12ème Congrès de l’EAJS « Branching Out. Diversity of Jewish Studies »

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Jewish Studies is – and has been since Leopold Zunz’ Etwas über die rabbinische Literatur – a multi-disciplinary field that brings together scholars, topics, and methods from across many academic disciplines. Even the shortest definitions of Jewish Studies mention that it is concerned with the study of the history, culture and religion of Jews throughout time; more detailed descriptions also mention fields such as anthropology, archaeology, ethnic studies, languages, political science, sociology, women’s studies, and others. Diversity is a prerequisite for academic Jewish Studies which draw on a wide array of different sources and work on a multitude of dissimilar questions.

Jewish Studies scholars do not only use interdisciplinary methods, but are also involved in multi-disciplinary networks, cooperating and communicating with colleagues from a wide variety of fields and geographical centers. At the same time, research into Jewish history, culture, languages and the like is not limited to Jewish Studies departments, creating yet wider networks and greater diversity.

The twelfth EAJS congress “Branching Out. Diversity of Jewish Studies”, taking place in Frankfurt/Main (Germany) on July 16th – 20th 2023, will showcase and celebrate that diversity which is such an integral part of Jewish Studies: it is reflected in research topics ranging from the Bible and ancient history to contemporary Jewish Thought and culture, in a multitude of different sources from all over the world, in methods and approaches from Archaeology to Digital Humanities, and the vast array of interdisciplinary networks and research approaches.

We envision the subject of diversity also to be realized via the participants of the congress: from all different fields of Jewish Studies, from all over the world, from all ages and genders, from all academic levels, graduate student to senior scholar, but all united in the shared interest in Jewish Studies.

In this inclusive sense, we welcome all colleagues working in Jewish Studies to participate in this exciting conference in Frankfurt!


Scholars of Jewish Studies from Europe and beyond are invited to propose papers and sessions. The maximum duration of a paper is twenty minutes with additional ten minutes reserved for discussion.

Please download the relevant form and fill in all fields. In order to choose your section, please refer to the list and description of the sections below. Then send the pdf file to submit.paper@eajs-2023.eu, under the header “Proposal. »

Graduate students who wish to present their work within the framework of the regular call for papers need to add a letter of recommendation from their supervisor to their proposal. The letter has to be included in the same mail, together with the proposal.

Sessions may include either four speakers or three speakers and a responder. If you wish to propose another format (round table, etc.), please use the sessions form, fill in the rationale for the session and add a description of the planned format in the session.

We expect sessions to honor the title of the congress and reflect the diversity of Jewish Studies scholars by considering the possibilities of gender diversity, and by including scholars from different universities and at least one early career researcher. Sessions that do not reflect diversity will be at a significant disadvantage in the review process.

Proposals for papers and sessions will be accepted until December 31st 2022, 24:00h (GMT +1). All proposals received until this date will be reviewed by specialists in the respective field of Jewish Studies. Decisions will be communicated in February 2023. Papers and sessions will be included in the program only if (all) speakers have registered for the congress and paid their fees by March 31st 2023.

The Bible and its Reception
The section will contain panels on all aspects of the Bible and its reception in Judaism, including but not limited to the study of the biblical text, the transmission of the Bible, Jewish exegesis throughout the ages, etc.

Second Temple Judaism

The boundaries of this section are temporal, the topics, such as Temple, priesthood, diaspora, Samaritans, apocryphal and pseudepigraphical literature, are diverse.

Rabbinic Literature and its Reception

This section understands “rabbinic literature » in the widest possible sense and can include panels on Mishna, Tosefta, the Talmudim, early and late midrash, geonic literature, and the reception of this literature throughout the ages, etc.

Medieval Hebrew Literature

This section deals with both secular and religious literature, both prose and poetry, mainly in Hebrew.

Modern Jewish Literature

This section is open to discuss modern Jewish literature in all languages, focusing on the contribution of literature to Jewish culture and how Judaism is communicated to a Jewish and non-Jewish audience.

Hebrew Studies

In addition to papers on questions of Hebrew linguistics, this section welcomes papers on the history of Hebrew linguistics and on teaching Hebrew in the diaspora.

Jewish Languages

This section welcomes papers on all languages and dialects used exclusively or mainly by Jews, such as Yiddish, Judeo-Spanish, Judeo-Arabic, Jewish Aramaic dialects, Judeo-Italian, etc.

Ancient Jewish History and Archaeology

Papers dealing with Jewish History from before the Second Temple period, as well as papers with a focus on an entanglement of Jewish History/Archaeology are addressed here.

Medieval Jewish History

In this section all papers on Medieval Jewish History in the broad sense, be it Sephardic, Ashkenazic, Byzantine or Mizraḥi, find their place here.

Early Modern Jewish History

The early modern period – roughly the three centuries between the expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492 and the Haskalah – was a period of intense cultural encounter, both between Jews from various cultural backgrounds and with Christians and Muslims. Papers in this section will address the wide array of historical, cultural, religious, economic, and social factors shaping the early modern Jewish experience and its cross-cultural connections.

Modern Jewish History

For this congress, we consider the Haskalah and the beginning of the “Nation State » in Europe to define the beginning of Modern Jewish History, which reaches to the present day and includesthe age of globalization and also covers topics such as Zionism, migrations and the like.

Shoah and Antisemitism

Papers in this section deal with the Shoah and its impact on Jewish life. Additionally, other manifestations of Antisemitism will be discussed.

Regional and National Jewish History

This section is the natural choice for organized panels that focus on a specific region, and is also open to individual proposals that deal with a specific Jewish community.

Jewish Frankfurt

Honoring the city in which the congress will take place, we invite proposals for papers that focus on any and all aspects of Jewish life and history connected to Frankfurt, including research into Jewish Frankfurt but also topics inspired by Frankfurt Jews and their experiences, such as “Jewish participation in democratic rule » (inspired by the Jewish members of the Paulskirche parliament), “Strengthening Jewish identity through teaching Jewish topics » (inspired by the Frankfurt Lehrhaus), or “Jewish philanthropy » (inspired by the Rothschild family).

Jewish Law

Halakhah in all its diverse literary forms and developments, from halakhic topics in classical rabbinic literature to Halakhah in our days, encompassing many cultural adaptations in time and place.

Jewish Thought

With a very wide conception of “Jewish Thought » that also includes questions like Musar (as dissemination of Ethics), we invite papers on all aspects of Jewish Thought from Antiquity to contemporary Jewish Thought.

Jewish Liturgy and Ritual

This section includes all aspects of the study of Jewish prayer and liturgy.

Jewish Mysticism and Magic

This section deals with Jewish Mysticism from all ages, from Hekhalot literature, through Haside Ashkenaz up to Kabbalah and the mystical components of Hasidism. Additionally, the topic of Magic, within and without Jewish Mysticism, is addressed.

Non-normative Judaisms

True to the subtitle “Diversity of Jewish Studies » this section invites proposals on all non-normative groups and movements that developed from Judaism, including but not limited to Samaritans, Qumran, early Christianity, Karaites, Sabbateans, Frankists, etc.

Jewish Folklore

This section includes Folklore, Ethnology, Anthropology throughout Jewish History of all times and places.

Manuscript Studies, History of the Jewish Book

This section covers codicology, paleography, the study of individual manuscripts, production and distribution of manuscripts and books, and any paper that is interested in the materiality of the written word.

Libraries, Archives, Information Management

Collections, their history, their management and all kinds of questions regarding information management that concern the world of Jewish Studies.

Jewish Museology

Jewish Museums and the exhibition of Jewish objects/Jewish topics in other museums, preservation of material Jewish culture, concepts of presenting Jewish culture and/or history to audiences (in Europe).

Jewish Art

The section brings together Jewish Art from all periods, with a focus on the visual arts and architecture. Sessions on medieval art will not take place at the same time as sessions in Manuscript Studies.

Jewish Performing Arts: Music, Theater, Film

The focus of this section is on papers concerning Jewish Performing Arts in various forms, without any boundaries of time and space.

Diversity/Gender Studies

All papers addressing Diversity/Gender studies in the widest sense are included in this section. Topics ranging from “Women in the Talmud » to “the feminine in Kabbalah », as well as discussions of diversity within  Jewish sources, etc.

Digital Jewish Studies

In addition to the workshop organized by the EAJS Digital Forum, we invite scholars to share their projects and experience in Digital Jewish Studies.


We encourage you to place your paper or session into one of the provided sections. Only if you are convinced that your paper/session fits into none of the categories but is an essential contribution to Jewish Studies choose “other » in the drop-down menu and provide a suggestion how you would define the section in the abstract.