162 episodes

The College Commons Podcast, passionate perspectives from Judaism's leading thinkers, is produced by Hebrew Union College, America's first Jewish institution of higher learning.

College Commons HUC-JIR

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 4.7 • 21 Ratings

The College Commons Podcast, passionate perspectives from Judaism's leading thinkers, is produced by Hebrew Union College, America's first Jewish institution of higher learning.

    The Orthodox Embrace of Legal Pluralism in Israel

    The Orthodox Embrace of Legal Pluralism in Israel

    Professor Alexander Kaye reminds us that Orthodoxy does not necessarily seek a monopoly on the power of state.

    Alexander Kaye is the Karl, Harry, and Helen Stoll Assistant Professor of Israel Studies at Brandeis University, and is the author of "The Invention of Jewish Theocracy: The Struggle for Legal Authority in Modern Israel" (Oxford University Press, 2020). His research deals in the history of Jewish thought, with a special focus on political thought, the history of law and theories of Jewish modernity. He is also an expert in Israel Studies, and his research in the history of Israel focuses on the relationship between law, religion and politics, and in particular in the history of religious Zionism.

    • 37 min
    Senate 2022: The Game Is On & the Stakes Are High

    Senate 2022: The Game Is On & the Stakes Are High

    Blurb: Washington insider Ira Shapiro takes the Senate to task – and asks us to fix it.

    Ira Shapiro’s forty-five-year Washington career has focused on American politics and international trade. Shapiro served twelve years in senior staff positions in the U.S. Senate, working for a series of distinguished senators: Jacob Javits, Gaylord Nelson, Abraham Ribicoff, Thomas Eagleton, Robert Byrd, and Jay Rockefeller. He served in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative during the Clinton administration, first as general counsel and then chief negotiator with Japan and Canada, with the rank of ambassador.

    In his two previous highly regarded books on the U.S. Senate, Ira Shapiro chronicled the institution from its apogee in the 1970s through its decline in the decades since. Now, in his new book -- The Betrayal: How Mitch McConnell and the Senate Republicans Abandoned America (Rowman & Littlefield; May 17, 2022), Shapiro turns his gaze to how the Senate responded to the challenges posed by the Trump administration and its prospects under President Biden.

    • 23 min
    Radical Jewish Ethics Meets the Real World

    Radical Jewish Ethics Meets the Real World

    Professor Annabel Herzog dives into a unique Jewish philosopher's approach to ethics and politics.

    Annabel Herzog is a Professor of Political Theory at the School of Political Science, and Director of the M.A. Program in Cultural Studies, at the University of Haifa.

    Her work has focussed on 20th-century philosophers, such as Hannah Arendt, Emmanuel Levinas, Albert Camus and Jacques Derrida; on Philosophy and Literature; on Contemporary Jewish Philosophy; on Memory and Trauma, on Ethics and Politics.

    Her book: Levinas's Politics: Justice, Mercy, Universality (University of Pennsylvania Press: 2000 won of the 2021 Jordan Schnitzer Book Award in Philosophy and Jewish Thought.

    • 31 min
    A Tale of Travelers’ Checks, High Finance, and Antisemitism

    A Tale of Travelers’ Checks, High Finance, and Antisemitism

    An early-modern myth of Jewish credit frames age-old antisemitic tropes.

    Francesca Trivellato is Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Early Modern European History at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, NJ. She is the author, most recently, of The Promise and Peril of Credit: What a Forgotten Legend about Jews and Finance Tells us about the Making of European Commercial Society (Princeton University Press, 2019), which won the 2020 Jacques Barzun Book Prize in Cultural History and the 2021 Jordan Schnitzer Book Award in medieval and early modern Jewish History and Culture.

    • 22 min
    Warm and Welcoming? Institutionalized Biases and Barriers to Inclusion

    Warm and Welcoming? Institutionalized Biases and Barriers to Inclusion

    How the Jewish community can become truly diverse and inclusive in the 21st Century.

    Warren Hoffman is the executive director of the Association for Jewish Studies, the largest academic Jewish studies membership organization in the world. He has spent his career working in Jewish communal agencies, including JCCs and Federations, to bring change, innovation, and new ideas to legacy organizations. He holds a PhD in American literature from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Hoffman is the author of two books: The Passing Game: Queering Jewish American Culture and The Great White Way: Race and the Broadway Musical.

    Miriam Steinberg-Egeth has been a leader in the Philadelphia Jewish community since 2006, providing interdenominational and intergenerational opportunities for Jews of all backgrounds to connect with communal experiences that work for them. Her roles have included director of the Center City Kehillah, administrator for the Board of Rabbis of Greater Philadelphia, and director of Hillel of Greater Philadelphia's Jewish Graduate Student Network. She is currently the Strategic Manager at Hadar and is also the writer of a weekly advice column, "Miriam's Advice Well."

    • 29 min
    Not Your Grandparents’ Archives (Well, Actually, They Are)

    Not Your Grandparents’ Archives (Well, Actually, They Are)

    Dr. Jason Lustig uncovers epic struggles over archives, the repositories of our stories and identity.

    Dr. Jason Lustig is a Lecturer and Israel Institute Teaching Fellow at the Schusterman Center for Jewish Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. His first book, A Time to Gather: Archives and the Control of Jewish Culture (Oxford University Press, 2021), traces the twentieth-century struggle over who might “own” Jewish history, especially after the Nazi looting of Jewish archives. Dr. Lustig is also the host and creator of the Jewish History Matters Podcast, which is online at JewishHistory.FM. He received his Ph.D. at the UCLA Department of History, and has also been a Harry Starr Fellow in Judaica at Harvard University’s Center for Jewish Studies and a Gerald Westheimer Early Career Fellow at the Leo Baeck Institute.

    • 27 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
21 Ratings

21 Ratings

Punkmouse ,

Intellectually stimulating AND heart warming

If you enjoy in-depth interviews of interest to the Jewish community that both stimulate the mind AND warm the heart, this is the podcast for you. Love it!

Ravgah ,

Give the guest some space

The host means well but simply can’t let the show be about the guest. He dominates the conversation. I felt sorry for the guest who could hardly get a word in; or at least he should be allowed to respond in full. The best host knows about tzimtzum. Less is more.

nicknamethatisnttaken! ,

Very interesting topics and discussion; too much cross-talk

Excellent, stimulating topics, host and guests. I think the podcast could be improved if it was talking over the guests by host - in podcast i.e. an audio format, it is difficult to hear what both people are saying at once.

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