Hebrew (HEBR)

HEBR 051 Elementary Modern Hebrew I

An introduction to the skills of reading, writing, and conversing in modern Hebrew. This course assumes no previous knowledge of Hebrew. A grade of B- or higher is needed to proceed to HEBR 052, Elementary Modern Hebrew II.

For BA Students: Language Course

One-term course offered either term

Also Offered As: HEBR 651, JWST 051

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 052 Elementary Modern Hebrew II

A continuation of HEBR 051, First Year Modern Hebrew, which assumes basic skills of reading and speaking and the use of the present tense. Open to all students who have completed one semester of Hebrew at Penn with a grade of B- or above and new students with equivalent competency.

For BA Students: Language Course

One-term course offered either term

Also Offered As: HEBR 652, JWST 052

Prerequisite: HEBR 051 or permission of instructor

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 053 Intermediate Modern Hebrew III

Development of the skills of reading, writing, and conversing in modern Hebrew on an intermediate level. Open to all students who have completed two semesters of Hebrew at Penn with a grade of B- or above and new students with equivalent competency.

For BA Students: Language Course

One-term course offered either term

Also Offered As: HEBR 653, JWST 053

Prerequisites: HEBR 052 or permission of the instructor.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 054 Intermediate Modern Hebrew IV

This course constitutes the final semester of Intermediate Modern Hebrew. Hence, one of the main goals of the course is to prepare the students for the proficiency exam in Hebrew. Emphasis will be placed on grammar skills and ability to read literary texts. Open to all students who have completed three semesters of Hebrew at Penn with a grade of B- or above and new students with equivalent competency.

For BA Students: Last Language Course

One-term course offered either term

Also Offered As: HEBR 654, JWST 054

Prerequisite: HEBR 053 or permission of instructor

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 059 Advanced Modern Hebrew: Reading and Composition

After four semesters of language study, it's time to enter the vibrant world of contemporary Israeli culture. In this course students read some of the best plays, poems, short stories, and journalism published in Israel today. They also watch and analyze some of Israel's most popular films, TV programs, and videos. Themes include Jewish-Arab relations, the founding of the State, family ties and intergenerational conflict, war and society, and the recent dynamic changes in Israel society. HEBR 054 or permission of instructor. Since the content of this course may change from year to year, students may take it more than once (but only once for credit).

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Engel

One-term course offered either term

Also Offered As: HEBR 552, JWST 059

Prerequisite: HEBR 054 or permission of instructor

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 151 Elementary Biblical Hebrew I

This course is an introduction to Biblical Hebrew. It assumes no prior knowledge, but students who can begin to acquire a reading knowledge of the Hebrew alphabet before class starts will find it extremely helpful. The course is the 1st of a 4-semester sequence whose purpose is to prepare students to take courses in Bible that demand a familiarity with the original language of the text.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Carasik

Course usually offered in fall term

Also Offered As: HEBR 451, JWST 171, JWST 471

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 152 Elementary Biblical Hebrew II

A continued introduction to the grammar of Biblical Hebrew, focusing on the verbal system, with an emphasis on developing language skills in handling Biblical texts. A suitable entry point for students who have had some Modern Hebrew.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Carasik

Course usually offered in spring term

Also Offered As: HEBR 452, JWST 172, JWST 472

Prerequisites: Successful completion of HEBR 151 or permission of the instructor.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 153 Intermediate Biblical Hebrew I

This course will focus on using the grammar and vocabulary learned at the introductory level to enable students to read Biblical texts independently and take advanced Bible exegesis courses. We will also work on getting comfortable with the standard dictionaries, concordances, and grammars used by scholars of the Bible. We will concentrate on prose this semester, closely reading Ruth, Jonah, and other prose selections. We will begin to translate from English into Biblical Hebrew, and there will also be a unit on the punctuation marks used in the Bible. This is a suitable entry point for students who already have strong Hebrew skills.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Carasik

Course usually offered in fall term

Also Offered As: HEBR 453, JWST 173, JWST 473

Prerequisites: Successful completion of HEBR 152 or permission of the instructor. This course is the prerequisite for HEBR 154 (no one is "permitted" into that semester; you must take the previous semester course).

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 154 Intermediate Biblical Hebrew II

This course is a continuation of the fall semester's Intermediate Biblical Hebrew I. No one will be admitted into the course who has not taken the fall semester. It will continue to focus on using the grammar and vocabulary learned at the introductory level to enable students to read biblical texts independently and take advanced Bible exegesis courses. We will concentrate this semester on various selections of Biblical poetry, including Exodus 15 and Job 28. We will also continue to translate English prose into Biblical Hebrew.

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Carasik

Course usually offered in spring term

Also Offered As: HEBR 454, JWST 174, JWST 474

Prerequisites: Successful completion of HEBR 153.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 250 Studies in the Hebrew Bible

This course introduces students to the methods and resources used in the modern study of the Bible. To the extent possible, these methods will be illustrated as they apply to a single book of the Hebrew Bible that will serve as the main focus of the course. The course is designed for undergraduates who have previously studied the Bible in Hebrew either in high school or college. The course is designed for undergraduates who have previously studied the Bible in Hebrew either in high school or college. It presupposes fluency in reading and translating Bibical Hebrew and a working knowledge of Biblical Hebrew grammar.

Course usually offered in spring term

Also Offered As: COML 228, JWST 256, RELS 220

Prerequisites: Fluency in reading and translating Biblical Hebrew and a working knowledge of Biblical Hebrew grammar.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 258 Studies in Medieval Jewish Literature

This course will introduce students to the modern academic study of the different genres of medieval Jewish literature-- poetry, narrative, interpretation of the Bible, liturgy, historiography, philosophy, sermonic, mystical and pietistic writings. In addition to studying the primary texts, the course will also explore the historical, religious, and cultural contexts in which these texts were first produced and then studied, and the aspects of Jewish historical experience that these texts reflect. The specific topic of the course (e.g. Medieval Biblical Interpretation, Kabbalah) will vary from semester to semester. In some cases, the specific topic may also be the work of a specific author, like Maimonides. Primary sources will be read in their original Hebrew. While no previous experience in studying these texts is required, students should be able to read unpointed Hebrew texts. If there is a question as to whether the course is appropriate for you, please contact the professor.

Taught by: Fishman

One-term course offered either term

Also Offered As: FOLK 258, HEBR 558, JWST 258, RELS 228

Prerequisite: Reading knowledge of Hebrew

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

HEBR 259 Introduction to Modern Hebrew Literature

The objective of this course is to develop an artistic appreciation for literature through in-depth class discussions and text analysis. Readings comprised of Israeli poetry and short stories. Students examine how literary language expresses psychological and cultural realms. The covers topics such as: the image of the Israeli city, the conflict between individual dreams and national/Zionist goals, etc. Because the content of this course changes from year to year, students may take it for credit more than once.

For BA Students: Arts and Letters Sector

Taught by: Gold

Course usually offered in fall term

Also Offered As: COML 266, HEBR 559, JWST 259

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

Notes: This course is conducted in Hebrew and all readings are in Hebrew. Grading is based primarily on participation and students' literary understanding. (HEBR 054 or equivalent required)

HEBR 350 A Book of the Bible

In-depth textual study of a book of the Hebrew Bible studied in the light of modern scholarship (including archaeology and ancient Near Eastern literature) as well as ancient and medieval commentaries. The book varies each semester and the course may be repeated for credit. Prerequisite(s): Thorough command of Biblical Hebrew and prior experience studying the Bible in the original in high school, college, or a comparable setting. Language of instruction is in English.

Course usually offered in fall term

Also Offered As: HEBR 550, JWST 351, RELS 322

Prerequisites: Thorough command of Biblical Hebrew and prior experience studying the Bible in the original in high school, college, or a comparable setting. Language of instruction is in English.

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

Notes: The course is designed primarily for undergraduates who have previously studied the Bible in Hebrew either in high school or college. It presupposes fluency in reading Biblical Hebrew, including a working knowledge of Biblical Hebrew grammar.

HEBR 356 Talmudic Midrashic Literature

An introduction to the reading of classical Rabbinic literature. The topic will vary ranging from Talmudic to Siddur. Readings will be in Hebrew with supplemental English works.

Course not offered every year

Also Offered As: HEBR 656

Prerequisites: Two years of Hebrew or equivalent required.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 357 Classical Midrash & Aggadah

Readings in Rabbinic lore from classical Midrashic texts.

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Also Offered As: HEBR 657, JWST 352, JWST 552

Prerequisites: Students must be able to read an unpointed Hebrew text.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 358 Siddur and Piyyut

A study of the institution of Jewish prayer, its literature, and synagogu poetry. Texts will be read in Hebrew with supplementary English readings.

Course not offered every year

Also Offered As: HEBR 658, JWST 355

Prerequisite: HEBR 052 or equivalent

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 359 Seminar Modern Hebrew Literature

This course introduces students to selections from the best literary works written in Hebrew over the last hundred years in a relaxed seminar environment. The goal of the course is to develop skills in critical reading of literature in general, and to examine how Hebrew authors grapple with crucial questions of human existence and national identity. Topics include how writers speak of their own lives, how classical Hebrew texts live in contemporary Israel and how literature reflects conflicts between generations, ethnicities and belief systems. Because the content of this course changes from year to year, students may take it for credit more than once. Note: This course is conducted in Hebrew and all readings are in Hebrew Grading is based primarily on participation and students' literary understanding. (HEBR 054 or equivalent required).

For BA Students: Arts and Letters Sector

Taught by: Gold

Course usually offered in spring term

Also Offered As: CIMS 359, COLL 227, COML 359, HEBR 659, JWST 359

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

Notes: This course is conducted in Hebrew and all readings are in Hebrew Grading is based primarily on participation and students' literary understanding. (HEBR 054 or equivalent required).

HEBR 451 Elementary Biblical Hebrew I

This course is an introduction to Biblical Hebrew. It assumes no prior knowledge, but students who can begin to acquire a reading knowledge of the Hebrew alphabet before class starts will find it extremely helpful. The course is the 1st of a 4-semester sequence whose purpose is to prepare students to take courses in Bible that demand a familiarity with the original language of the text.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Carasik

Course usually offered in fall term

Also Offered As: HEBR 151, JWST 171, JWST 471

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 452 Elementary Biblical Hebrew II

A continued introduction to the grammar of Biblical Hebrew, focusing on the verbal system, with an emphasis on developing language skills in handling Biblical texts. A suitable entry point for students who have had some Modern Hebrew.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Carasik

Course usually offered in spring term

Also Offered As: HEBR 152, JWST 172, JWST 472

Prerequisites: Successful completion of HEBR 451 or permission of the instructor.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 453 Intermediate Biblical Hebrew I

This course will focus on using the grammar and vocabulary learned at the introductory level to enable students to read Biblical texts independently and take advanced Bible exegesis courses. We will also work on getting comfortable with the standard dictionaries, concordances, and grammars used by scholars of the Bible. We will concentrate on prose this semester, closely reading Ruth, Jonah, and other prose selections. We will begin to translate from English into Biblical Hebrew, and there will also be a unit on the punctuation marks used in the Bible. This is a suitable entry point for students who already have strong Hebrew skills.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Carasik

Course usually offered in fall term

Also Offered As: HEBR 153, JWST 173, JWST 473

Prerequisites: Successful completion of HEBR 452 or permission of the instructor. This course is the prerequisite for HEBR 454 (no one is "permitted" into that semester; you must take the previous semester course).

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 454 Intermediate Biblical Hebrew II

This course is a continuation of the fall semester's Intermediate Biblical Hebrew I. No one will be admitted into the course who has not taken the fall semester. It will continue to focus on using the grammar and vocabulary learned at the introductory level to enable students to read biblical texts independently and take advanced Bible exegesis courses. We will concentrate this semester on various selections of Biblical poetry, including Exodus 15 and Job 28. We will also continue to translate English prose into Biblical Hebrew.

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Carasik

Course usually offered in spring term

Also Offered As: HEBR 154, JWST 174, JWST 474

Prerequisites: Successful completion of HEBR 453.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 455 Post-Baccalaureate Hebrew Texts

Course not offered every year

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 486 Rabbinic Writers on Rabbinic Culture

This course traces reflections on rabbinic culture produced within Jewish legal literature of the classic rabbinic period - - Midrash, Mishna, and Talmud - - and in later juridical genres - - Talmudic commentary, codes and responses. Attention will be paid to the mechanics of different genres, the role of the underlying proof text, the inclusion or exclusion of variant opinions, the presence of non-legal information, the balance between precedent and innovation. Reading knowledge of Hebrew is required.

Taught by: Fishman

Course not offered every year

Also Offered As: JWST 426, RELS 426

Prerequisite: Reading knowledge of Hebrew

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

HEBR 550 A Book of the Bible

In-depth textual study of a book of the Hebrew Bible studied in the light of modern scholarship (including archaeology and ancient Near Eastern literature) as well as ancient and medieval commentaries. The book varies each semester and the course may be repeated for credit. Prerequisite(s): Thorough command of Biblical Hebrew and prior experience studying the Bible in the original in high school, college, or a comparable setting. Language of instruction is in English.

Course usually offered in fall term

Also Offered As: HEBR 350, JWST 351, RELS 322

Prerequisites: Thorough command of Biblical Hebrew and prior experience studying the Bible in the original in high school, college, or a comparable setting. Language of instruction is in English.

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

Notes: The course is designed primarily for undergraduates who have previously studied the Bible in Hebrew either in high school or college. It presupposes fluency in reading Biblical Hebrew, including a working knowledge of Biblical Hebrew grammar.

HEBR 552 Advanced Modern Hebrew: Reading and Composition

After four semesters of language study, it's time to enter the vibrant world of contemporary Israeli culture. In this course students read some of the best plays, poems, short stories, and journalism published in Israel today. They also watch and analyze some of Israel's most popular films, TV programs, and videos. Themes include Jewish-Arab relations, the founding of the State, family ties and intergenerational conflict, war and society, and the recent dynamic changes in Israel society. HEBR 054 or permission of instructor. Since the content of this course may change from year to year, students may take it more than once (but only once for credit).

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Engel

One-term course offered either term

Also Offered As: HEBR 059, JWST 059

Prerequisite: HEBR 054 or permission of instructor

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 557 Studies in Rabbinic Literature: Law and Judaism

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Also Offered As: NELC 557

Prerequisites: Knowledge of Hebrew.

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

HEBR 558 Studies in Medieval Jewish Literature

This course will introduce students to the modern academic study of the different genres of medieval Jewish literature-- poetry, narrative, interpretation of the Bible, liturgy, historiography, philosophy, sermonic, mystical and pietistic writings. In addition to studying the primary texts, the course will also explore the historical, religious, and cultural contexts in which these texts were first produced and then studied, and the aspects of Jewish historical experience that these texts reflect. The specific topic of the course (eg. Medieval Biblical Interpretation, Kabbalah) will vary from semester to semester. In some cases, the specific topic may also be the work of a specific author, like Maimonides. Primary sources will be read in their original Hebrew. While no previous experience in studying these texts is required, students should be able to read unpointed Hebrew texts. If there is a question as to whether the course is appropriate for you, please contact the professor.

Taught by: Fishman

One-term course offered either term

Also Offered As: FOLK 258, HEBR 258, JWST 258, RELS 228

Prerequisites: Undergraduates need permission from the instructor.

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

HEBR 559 Introduction to Modern Hebrew Literature

The objective of this course is to develop an artistic appreciation for literature through in-depth class discussions and text analysis. Readings comprised of Israeli poetry and short stories. Students examine how literary language expresses psychological and cultural realms. The covers topics such as: the image of the Israeli city, the conflict between individual dreams and national/Zionist goals, etc. Because the content of this course changes from year to year, students may take it for credit more than once. Note: This course is conducted in Hebrew and all readings are in Hebrew. Grading is based primarily on participation and students' literary understanding. (HEBR 054 or equivalent required) The content of this course changes from year to year, thus students may take it for credit more than once.

Taught by: Gold

Course usually offered in fall term

Also Offered As: COLL 227, COML 266, HEBR 259, JWST 259

Prerequisites: HEBR 059 or equivalent.

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

Notes: The class will be conducted in Hebrew and the texts read in the original.dents There will be 3-4 short papers and a final exam.

HEBR 583 Studies in Medieval Jewish Culture

Primary sources include readings from ancient, medieval and early modern Jewish texts. Students must be able to read unvocalized Hebrew. Open to undergraduates only with instructor's permission.

Taught by: Fishman

Course usually offered in fall term

Also Offered As: HIST 523, JWST 523, RELS 523

Prerequisites: Reading knowledge of Hebrew.

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

HEBR 651 Elementary Modern Hebrew I

An introduction to the skills of reading, writing, and conversing in Modern Hebrew. This course assumes no previous knowledge of Hebrew.

For BA Students: Language Course

One-term course offered either term

Also Offered As: HEBR 051, JWST 051

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 652 Elementary Modern Hebrew II

A continuation of HEBR 051, First Year Modern Hebrew, which assumes basic skills of reading and speaking and the use of the present tense. Open to all students who have completed one semester of Hebrew at Penn with a grade of B- or above and new students with equivalent competency.

For BA Students: Language Course

Also Offered As: HEBR 052, JWST 052

Prerequisite: HEBR 651 or permission of instructor

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 653 Intermediate Modern Hebrew III

Development of the skills of reading, writing, and conversing in Modern Hebrew on an intermediate level. Open to all students who have completed two semesters of Hebrew at Penn with a grade of B- or above and new students with equivalent competency.

For BA Students: Language Course

One-term course offered either term

Also Offered As: HEBR 053, JWST 053

Prerequisites: HEBR 652 or permission of the instructor.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 654 Intermediate Modern Hebrew IV

This course constitutes the final semester of Intermediate Modern Hebrew. Hence, one of the main goals of the course is to prepare the students for the proficiency exam in Hebrew. Emphasis will be placed on grammar skills and ability to read literary texts. Open to all students who have completed three semesters of Hebrew at Penn with a grade of B- or above and new students with equivalent competency.

For BA Students: Last Language Course

One-term course offered either term

Also Offered As: HEBR 054, JWST 054

Prerequisite: HEBR 653 or permission of instructor

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 656 Talmudic Midrashic Literature

An introduction to the reading of classical Rabbinic literature. The topic will vary ranging from Talmudic to Siddur. Readings will be in Hebrew with supplemental English works.

Course not offered every year

Also Offered As: HEBR 356

Prerequisites: Two years of Hebrew or equivalent required.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 657 Classical Midrash & Aggadah

Readings in Rabbinic lore from classical Midrashic texts.

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Also Offered As: HEBR 357, JWST 352, JWST 552

Prerequisites: Students must be able to read an unpointed Hebrew text.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 658 Siddur & Piyyut

A study of the institution of Jewish prayer, its literature, and synagogue poetry. Texts will be read in Hebrew with supplementary English readings.

Also Offered As: HEBR 358, JWST 355, JWST 655

Prerequisite: HEBR 054 or equivalent

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

HEBR 659 Seminar Modern Hebrew Literature

This course introduces students to selections from the best literary works written in Hebrew over the last hundred years in a relaxed seminar environment. The goal of the course is to develop skills in critical reading of literature in general, and to examine how Hebrew authors grapple with crucial questions of human existence and national identity. Topics include how writers speak of their own lives, how classical Hebrew texts live in contemporary Israel and how literature reflects conflicts between generations, ethnicities and belief systems. Because the content of this course changes from year to year, students may take it for credit more than once.

Taught by: Gold

Course not offered every year

Also Offered As: CIMS 359, COLL 227, COML 359, HEBR 359, JWST 359

Prerequisites: HEBR 059 or HEBR 259 or permission of the instructor. This class is conducted in Hebrew and the texts are read in the original. The syllabus serves solely as an outline. The amount of material we cover depends on the pace of the class. Additionally, the packet contains significantly more material than will be studied in class to compensate for the difficulty of obtaining Hebrew texts in America. The content of this course changes from year to year and therefore students may take it for credit more than once.

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

Notes: The content of this course changes from year to year; and, therefore, students may take it for credit more than once.