By Zoom: Downtown Discussion Group

November 30, 2020, 12:15 pm - 1:30 pm

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For the 2020-21 discussion season, we will be reading and sharing thoughts on Leora Batnitzky’s How Judaism Became a Religion.

“Is Judaism a religion, a culture, a nationality-or a mixture of all these?  In How Judaism Became a Religion, Leora Batnitzky boldly argues that this question more than any other has driven modern Jewish thought.  This wide ranging and lucid introduction tells the story of how Judaism came to be defined as a religion in the modern period—and why Jewish thinkers have fought as well as championed this idea.”

For the time being, the group will continue to meet virtually. Please sign up to lead discussion sessions and speak about a chapter! We need discussion leaders for all but the November 2 session. To sign up, please email Jeannelle D’Isa

November 2-Chapter 1-Modern Judaism and the Invention of Religion – Leader:  Rabbi Zemel

November 16-Chapter 2- Religion as History:Religious Reform and the Invention of Modern Orthodoxy – Ed Grossman

November 30– Chapter 3- Religion as Reason and the Separation of Religion from Politics – Leader:  Skip Halpern

December 14-Chapter 4- Religion as Experience: The German Jewish Renaissance – Leader:  Francie Schwartz

January 11, 2021-Chapter 5- Jewish Religion after the Holocaust – Leader:  Catherine Lynch

January 25– Chapter 6- The Irrelevance of Religion and the emergence of the Jewish Individual – Leader:  Leslie Sewell

February 8-Chapter 7- The Transformation of Tradition and the Invention of Jewish Culture – Leader:  Beth Jacob

February 22– Chapter 8- The Rejection of Jewish Religion and the Birth of Jewish Nationalism – Leader:  Alan Carpian

March 8– Chapter 9- Jewish Religion in the United States – Leader:  Mimi Wolf

March 22-Conclusion

April 5 – TBD Discussion Session

April 19

May 3

May 17