Hebrew Cultures and Theory: Culture and Myth
The question of myth is one of the most loaded one in Jewish studies.
The founding fathers of Jewish studies, such as Franz Rosenzweig, Gershom Scholem, Martin Buber, and Moshe Idel have all commented on the subject. More recently, a number of scholars have endeavored to explore the emergence of modern Jewish cultures, and Israeli-Zionist cultures in particular, through the perspective of myth. Among these one may find David Ohana, Yael Zrubavel, and Ruth Karton Bloom.
In this workshop we will explore the role of myths in contemporary Jewish studies. Recently scholars have focused on identifying (and “deconstructing”) contemporary myths. Our main concerns, however, is more metalogical, that is, how do we define myths, in what terms do we think of their function in culture, how do we construct their history, etc.
The goal of this workshop is to bring together young Israeli and American scholars. Together, in a series of discussions, we will seek to chart the boundaries of the scholarly discourse and the potential it holds for discussion questions that arise from the loaded interaction between secularization, religion and nationalism.