Jewish Studies Major

Goals for the Jewish Studies Major

Developing an understanding of the breadth and diversity of Jewish civilization through interdisciplinary learning in the arts, humanities, and social sciences

Jewish Studies Major

For the nine-course major in Jewish Studies, students must take courses pertaining both to the ancient and modern worlds and show proficiency in a Jewish language (equivalent to at least two semesters at the second-year level). 

Required courses: Majors must take JWST 102/REL 102, Introduction to Jewish Studies, by the end of their junior year, as well as two 300-level courses. 

Concentration: Students are expected to concentrate in some area or aspect of Jewish Studies (such as religion, European Jewish history, American Jewish studies, Sephardic studies, or comparative literary studies) by taking four courses above the 100 level, including at least one 300-level course. Majors devise their own concentrations in consultation with the director of the Jewish Studies program and another faculty member with expertise in a relevant area. 

Language proficiency: Students are expected to show proficiency (equivalent to at least two semesters at the intermediate level) in a language relevant to their concentration. Most typically the language counted will be a Jewish one (Hebrew, Yiddish, or Ladino), but in certain cases, non-Jewish languages (such as Arabic, French, Spanish, or German) may be accepted, where relevant to the student’s concentration, in consultation with the student’s major advisor. Up to two language courses at the intermediate level can count toward the Jewish Studies major. 

Courses outside of Wellesley: Up to three relevant courses taken outside of Wellesley—at Brandeis or other institutions in greater Boston, during study abroad, or in accredited summer programs—may be counted toward the major. 

Honors: The only route to honors in the major is writing a thesis and passing an oral examination. To be admitted to the thesis program, a student must have a grade point average of at least 3.5 in all work in the major field above the 100 level; the program may petition on her behalf if her GPA in the major is between 3.0 and 3.5. See Academic Distinctions.

 

Courses for Credit Toward the Jewish Studies Major

AMST 241 / SOC 241

A Nation in Therapy

1.0

AMST 251 / SOC 251

Racial Regimes in the United States and Beyond

1.0

AMST 258 / ENG 258

Gotham: New York in Literature & Art

1.0

CLCV 240 / REL 240

Romans, Jews, and Christians in the Roman Empire

1.0

ECON 311

Economics of Immigration

1.0

ENG 272

The 19th Century Novel

1.0

FREN 232 Occupation and Resistance: The French Memory and Experience of World War II

1.0

HIST 201 The Rise of the West? Europe 1789-2003

1.0

HIST 213 Conquest and Crusade in the Medieval Mediterranean

1.0

HIST 242 After Fascism: Germany since 1945

1.0

HIST 243 Gender and Sexuality in 20th Century Europe

1.0

HIST 245 The Social History of American Capitalism from Revolution to Empire

1.0

HIST 254 World War II United States 1.0
HIST 284 The Middle East in Modern History 1.0
HIST 285 / REL 266 Ottoman State and Society (1300-1923) 1.0
HIST 302 Seminar: World War II as Memory and Myth 1.0
HIST 364 / MES 364 Seminar: Film and Narratives of Social Change in the Modern Middle East and North Africa 1.0
HIST 366 / MES 366 Seminar: 'Greater Syria' under Ottoman and European Colonial Rule, c. 1850-1950 1.0
HIST 369 / MES 369 Histories of “Ethnic” and “Religious” Violence 1.0
MES 264 / REL 264 Religious and Ethnic Minorities in the Ottoman Empire

1.0

MES 265 / REL 265 Religion, Politics, and Culture in Modern Turkey

1.0

MES 358 / PEAC 358 / POL2 359 Palestinian Israeli Peace Prospects

1.0

MER 248 / SPAN 248 Cordoba: City and Myth

1.0

MUS 300 Music and the Holocaust

1.0

REL 105 Study of the New Testament

1.0

REL 111Y First Year Seminar: Jesus of Nazareth: Fact, Faith, Fiction, and Film

1.0

REL 242 Archaeology of the Biblical World 1.0
REL 243 Women in the Biblical World

1.0

REL 244 Jerusalem: The Holy City

1.0

REL 342 Archaeology of the Biblical World

1.0

REL 345 Seminar: Enslavement and the Bible

1.0

SPAN 252 The Making of Spain: Christians, Jews, and Moslems

1.0

THST 200 That's What She Said: Trailblazing Women of American Comedy

1.0