On the Margins
ON THE MARGINS: CONVERSOS AND THE QUESTION OF JEWISH BELONGING THROUGHOUT HISTORY
Part of our spring learning series, The Space In Between: Thresholds and Borders in Jewish Life and Thought
Monday, March 20, 2023
1:00–2:00 p.m. ET
With Dr. Jonathan Ray, Samuel Eig Associate Professor of Jewish Studies, Georgetown University, and JTS Alumnus
Jewish law provides relatively clear standards for who is, and who is not, a member of Jewish society. But popular Jewish acceptance—or rejection—of certain people as “Jews” has often run counter to these legal definitions. From medieval Spain to the Ottoman Empire to modern-day America and the State of Israel, conversion out of, or into, the Jewish community has raised tensions over who is (and isn’t) considered Jewish. We will discuss the question of Jewish belonging throughout history by looking at groups of converts and the liminal space they inhabited on the margins of the Jewish world.
If you have previously registered for another session in this series, your registration admits you to all sessions in the series, and you may attend as many as you’d like.
Note: The Zoom link for this session will be in the confirmation email that you will receive after you register.
ABOUT THE SERIES
The Space In Between: Thresholds and Borders in Jewish Life and Thought
We are living in an undefined time: our daily existence is no longer dominated by the pandemic, yet neither have we settled into a new normal. This sense of being in transition—neither here nor there—can feel destabilizing; but is the time in between really temporary, or are we always living in between moments, identities, and phases of life?
In this series, JTS scholars will delve into the idea of liminality—the time or space in between—which we encounter often in Jewish ritual, identity, law, and life. Join us to consider what these many manifestations of “in-between-ness” can teach us about ourselves and about Judaism, and to explore how we might find strength and meaning in an orientation not of “either/or” but of “both/and.”