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The annual Revel Shabbaton in Washington Heights offers a great opportunity to socialize with classmates, fellow students, and faculty. This year’s Shabbaton will be on Shabbat Vayakhel-Pekude/Parah, March 13–14, 2015.

Highlights include a Friday night dinner catered by Carlos and Gabby’s, Oneg featuring a student-led text exchange “The Profound, the Wacky and the Controversial,” and Shabbat lunch home hospitality meals, and shiurim by our guest faculty, Dr. Mordechai Cohen, Professor of Bible and Associate Dean, and Dr. Daniel Rynhold, Associate Professor of Jewish Philosophy and Director of the PhD Program.

Attendance is free. Open to all current Revel students, alumni (space limited), and prospective students (space limited), and their significant others.

Reservations are required.

Please click here to RSVP, propose a primary text for the Friday night oneg, and to volunteer to host a Shabbat lunch meal in your apartment.sign up below.

Registration deadline: Sunday, March 8th.

Full Schedule:

  • Minha, Kabbalat Shabbat, and Maariv, at Shenk Shul, 560 W185th St.
  • Carlos and Gabby’s group dinner at Shenk Shul
  • Oneg following dinner at Shenk Shul (10:00 p.m):
    Student-led primary text exchange: “The Profound, the Wacky and the Controversial”
  • Shaharit at Mt. Sinai Jewish Center, 136 Bennet Ave. Guest sermon by Professor Cohen
  • Shabbat lunch home hospitality meals
  • Community Seudah Shlishit at Mt. Sinai Jewish Center, featuring a presentation by Professor Rynhold

For any questions, please contact Mayer Juni at


steven fineMany Jews have long believed that the menorah bearers of the Arch of Titus are Jews, an urban myth that is particularly well rooted in Israeli culture.  In this lecture, presented in honor of Israeli art historian Dr. Shulamith Laderman at the Schechter Institute (wife of YU alumnus, Rabbi Paul Laderman) in Jerusalem in May, 2014, Prof. Steven Fine explains the history of this counter-memory of the Arch. This research is a piece of his larger Arch of Titus Project, which includes the digital restoration of the polychromy of the Arch, a history of the menorah to be published by Harvard University Press, a history of the Arch of Titus and an exhibition at Yeshiva University Museum, — The Arch of Titus: From Jerusalem to Rome, and Back — (2017).


3 Images - Vilna Gaon

On Thursday, February 19, Dr. Raphael Shuchat will be giving a guest lecture, exploring the recurrent debate over the true image of the Vilna Gaon. 7pm in Furst Hall – Room 535. RSVP here.

Sponsored parking is available in the YU lot (E) on Amsterdam Avenue and West 183rd Street.

Dr. Shuchat teaches Jewish philosophy and thought at Bar-Ilan University. His research focuses on the thought of the Vilna Gaon and his followers, and the inter-relation between Judaism and science. He has published three books: The Vilna Gaon and His Beit Midrash (together with M. Hallamish and Y. Rivlin; Ramat Gan 2003), A World Hidden in Time: Redemption in the Writings of the Vilna Gaon (Ramat Gan 2008), which received the Ministry of Education’s prize for Judaic research, and Jewish Faith in a Changing World (Boston 2012). His fourth book, Studies in Lithuanian Kabbalah: from the Vilna Gaon to Rav Kook (with M. Hallamish), will be published this year by Bar-Ilan University.

This event is sponsored by the Esther Manischewitz Community Education Fund. Sponsorships are available to help support other special Revel events. Please contact Dean David Berger at or Paul Glasser at or 212.960.0852.


Leiman 2Despite the substantial research done on the Holocaust, there is much we will never be able to know about the European Jewish world it destroyed. Yet new discoveries are still possible—even seven decades later. On Wednesday, January 7, 2015, Prof. Shnayer Leiman presented new evidence of spiritual resistance by a group of women during the Holocaust and succeeded in identifying its two surviving members in a lecture delivered in memory of Mrs. Esther Manischewitz z”l at Congregation Bnai Yeshurun in Teaneck, NJ. The lecture marked the inauguration of the Esther Manischewitz Community Education Fund, which will enable the transmission of higher Jewish learning to the broader Jewish community.

A yellowed Lithuanian identity card dated February 1940 recently came to Prof. Leiman’s attention. This piece of paper, which granted its holder permission to live in Vilna, featured the letterhead of “Yeshivat Maharsha” from Ostrow and the surnames and initials of the two Rashei Yeshiva, Rabbis J. Berkowitz (Berkovicius) and D. J. Chazanowitz (Chazanovicius).

Vilna Residence Permit_Leiman Lecture

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The Rabbi’s Daughter: New Evidence on Spiritual Resistance in the Holocaust

Join us Wednesday, January 7, 2015 at 7 p.m. in Congregation Bnai Yeshurun located at 641 W. Englewood Avenue in Teaneck, New Jersey for a special community lecture  by Professor Shnayer Leiman, commemorating the first yahrzeit of Mrs. Esther Manischewitz z”l.

Professor Leiman’s lecture will address the role of women in transmitting Torah teaching from one generation to the next, identifying an otherwise unknown young woman who heroically laid down her life for the cause of Torah. It will also deal with the recent discovery of a document whose significance for the history of Torah study before, during and after the Holocaust will be examined. Click to RSVP

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rsz_img_3979Halakhic texts were shown to “talk” social history at the special Revel lecture “Aspects of Thirteenth-Century Jewish Lay Piety” by Bar-Ilan University Professor Judah Galinsky on November 24. Galinsky, a Revel alumnus, focused on discussions in rabbinic texts that aimed to explain why otherwise observant Jewish men in medieval Ashkenaz did not don tefillin. This was especially problematic because the Talmud (b.Rosh ha-Shanah 17a) states that “a skull that does not don tefillin” will be consigned to Gehenna. Rabbenu Tam sought to remove his coreligionists in Ashkenaz from this classification by suggesting that they were well-intentioned and refrained from donning tefillin because they feared they would be unable to maintain the requisite levels of purity and holiness befitting the tefillin. Subsequent rabbis, including Joseph Bekhor Shor, added that those who did not don tefillin may have been motivated by a sense of religious modesty, and of not wanting to distinguish themselves by publicly observing a commandment neglected by others.

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The recently released movie “Noah” brought together top academic minds on Sunday, November 30, at the Yeshiva University Museum for a symposium titled “Modeling the Flood Story: Midrash and Movie,” presented by the Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies, Yeshiva College and YU Museum. The scholars analyzed popular Noah movies past and present in the context of the Torah’s account of Noah, interpretations of photo 7that account in Midrash [rabbinic biblical exegesis], and the flood story as deciphered in clay cuneiform tablets from Mesopotamia.

The 2014 movie, directed by Darren Aronofsky, and written by Aronofsky and Ari Handel, was criticized for deviating from the biblical story by Dr. Irving Finkel, curator and an authority of cuneiform on clay tablets from ancient Mesopotamia at the British Museum. In contrast, Dr. Devora Steinmetz, who serves on the leadership team for special programs at Drisha, said that the movie made her go back to the text.

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Noah's Ark

On Sunday, November 30th, 2014 from 2 – 5 PM, the Yeshiva University Museum, together with Yeshiva College and the Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies, will be hosting a symposium titled “Modeling the Flood Story: Midrash and Movie,” featuring interpretations of the Biblical flood account and a discussion of the 2014 film Noah. Reservations are required and tickets are available, free of charge, at

PART 1 The Biblical Flood Story, Background and Interpretation

The Mesopotamian Flood Story: Old Stories, New Discoveries
Dr. Irving Finkel 
(The British Museum)
Brave New World: The Biblical Flood Story in its Literary Context
Dr. Devora Steinmetz (Drisha Institute)
Rabbinic Interpretation of the Flood Story
Dr. Jeffrey Rubenstein (New York University)

PART 2 Noah (2014)

Biblical Films and Noah
Dr. Eric Goldman (Yeshiva University)
Noah as Midrash and Art
Rabbi Hayyim Angel (Yeshiva University)
, Dr. Devora Steinmetz, and Dr. Jeffrey Rubenstein 
in conversation with
 Dr. Eric Goldman

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Reif Q&AA feeling of camaraderie pervaded the fifth floor of Furst Hall on October 29 when Professor Stefan Reif delivered a talk at Revel about attitudes toward non-Jews in Genizah documents. Speaking without a microphone, Professor Reif interspersed his lecture with personal anecdotes and Yiddish sayings, and regaled the audience with stories of his time in Jew’s College, London. He made special note of his relationship with Hakham Solomon Gaon, who founded the YU Sephardic Studies Program, and in whose memory the lecture was dedicated. Not merely an academic analyzing dry Genizah texts, Reif is a deeply committed Jewish scholar who loves bringing the primary sources of our tradition to life.

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Galinsky CroppedOn Monday, November 24 at 7:00 P.M. in Furst Hall – Room 535, Revel will host a guest lecture by Dr. Judah Galinksy, a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Talmud and Rabbinic Literature at Bar-Ilan University, on “Aspects of Lay Piety in the Jewish Community During the 13th Century.” Response by Professor Ephraim Kanarfogel, Revel’s E. Billi Ivry University Professor of Jewish History, Literature and Law. Free parking is available to event attendees at YU Parking Lot (E) – 2497 Amsterdam Avenue, New York, NY, 10033.

Click to RSVP and join, share, and like our Facebook Event!

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