Jacob Perlow Series


Admission is free and open to the public


The Invention of Judaism: Torah and Jewish Identity

Yitzhak Y Melamed Headshot

A lecture by John J. Collins, Holmes Professor of Old testament Criticism and Interpretation, Yale University with an Introduction by Gregory Spinner Teaching Professor, Religious Studies Department, Skidmore College

Tuesday, September 26
8 PM, Davis Auditorium, Palamountain Hall 

The Torah of Moses is widely considered normative for Judaism. This lecture reviews how it came to be so in the Second Temple period. It also shows how it could be interpreted in quite diverse ways.



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The Long Struggle for Israel-Palestine

Michael Della Rocca headshot

A lecture by Jeremy Pressman Associate Professor of Political Science and Director of Middle East Studies, University of Connecticut with an introduction by Feryaz Ocakli Assistant Professor of Political Science, Skidmore College

Monday, October 2
7:30 PM, Davis Auditorium, Palamountain Hall 

Because neither side in the battle for Israel-Palestine is going to disappear, ending the struggle for Israel-Palestine would require Israeli and Palestinian concessions. When we think about resolving the conflict the same old options are on the table, variants of the one-state and two-state solution. In this talk, we’ll consider the core questions: What are the differences between the variants?

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Reclaiming My Dignity: A Talk with a Palestinian Refugee and Human Rights Activist

Bassem Eid

A Lecture by Bassem Eid

Wednesday, October 18
7:30 PM, Gannett Auditorium, Palamountain Hall

Perspectives Lecture Series: Bassem Eid is a world-renowned Palestinian-Muslim human rights activist and political analyst who was born and lived in a Palestinian refugee camp. In this talk, he shares his opinions on some of the problems the Palestinian people face and discusses options for the future.


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 Recalling Jewish Calcutta

Jael Silliman 2017

A lecture by Jael Silliman Scholar, author, and curator of www.jewishcalcutta.in with an introduction by Yelena Biberman-Ocakli Assistant Professor of Political Science, Skidmore College

Wednesday, November 8
7:30 PM, Davis Auditorium, Palamountain Hall 

Dr. Silliman is the founder and curator of Digital Archive entitled “Recalling Jewish Calcutta” (www.jewishcalcutta.in).

Dr. Silliman is a world-renowned researcher dedicated to preserving the history of Kolkata, India’s Jewish heritage. Kolkata’s Jewish community came to India from Baghdad at the time of the British Raj. The Kolkata Jews have since left a few traces behind. Among them are three impressive and large synagogues, two schools, and a cemetery.

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 About the Jacob Perlow Series: A generous grant from the estate of Jacob Perlow - an immigrant to the United States in the 1920s, a successful business man deeply interested in religion and philosophy, and a man who was committed to furthering Jewish education - supports annual lectures and presentations to the College and Capital District community on issues broadly related to Jews and Judaism.