Jewish History

Jewish History

Why study Jewish History?
The collective history of the Jewish people is noted in the Torah as a commandment: "And this day (of exodus) shall be unto you for a memorial…" (Exodus 12;14). The directive to remember, given even before the exodus from Egypt, shows that remembrance is just as important as the event itself. 

In this context, the History of the Jewish people has created and shaped our nation, and throughout the generations formed our national collative story. Therefore, understanding our life as a nation in its own land depends on our recognition and awareness of our nation's past – its spiritual heritage, actions and vision, and knowing the nations we came in contact with and were influenced by.  

The historian's work tools, or "lab", are the literary resources of our ancestors. They help mankind understand his past and analyze his present. Critical examination and scientific processing of information are some of the most important skills we can posses in today's world. Text sensitivities, developed during the study of human history, enables researchers to notice details others might not. Students of human history develop the ability to read, decipher and analyze texts in order to acquire access to the past, and operate within a wide range of disciplines (psychology, sociology, economics, literature and others).
History focuses on the past, but endows us with the skills of coping with our present and future.  

Why study Jewish History at Bar-Ilan?
Bar-Ilan's Department of Jewish History was established the same year as Bar-Ilan (1955), and is currently the largest Department of its kind in the world dedicated to the study of Jewish History. The Department offers BA, MA and PhD study tracks, and advocate a multidisciplinary teaching approach.

Our faculty includes world renowned experts and scientists, whose papers have been published in leading professional publications all over the world. Each of our faculty members maintains a close relationship with each of their students, guiding them throughout their studies in the Department, in order to help them achieve their full academic and scientific potential. 

Because of our course offering
The Department of Jewish History offers a variety of courses focusing on the chronicles of Jewish communities all over the world, from the days of the Bible, Mishnah and Talmud in Eretz Israel and the Jewish Diaspora, through the history of Judaism in the Middle Ages in Europe and the world of Islam, the expulsion of the Jews from Spain, to the history of the Hassidim, American Jewry in the New Age, Asian and African Jewries, the holocaust, Zionism, and more.  

Because of the variety of our study tracks
The Department of Jewish History offers its students a choice from a variety of study tracks, enabling each student to design their own curriculum. The tracks offered are extended, major, structured double major and minor. BA students can choose a direct study track for an MA degree (the extended track), so that within 4 years they acquire both a BA and an MA. Studies at the department focus on 3 eras: Ancient Times, the Middle Ages and the New Age.

For more information about Bar-Ilan's Department of Jewish History, refer to the Department's website.





Last modified: 18/10/2015