Summer School on Jewish Studies in St. Petersburg 2012

(July 4-10, 2012, 93 participants)

On 4-11 of July in St. Petersburg, which is also known as the ‘cradle of academic Jewish studies’, within the walls of the oldest university in Russia in cooperation with the youngest department of the University, the Department of Jewish Culture, St. Petersburg State University, the two key events of the summer Summer School Jewish Studies and the XVII International Conference on Jewish Studies were held by Sefer Center.
The school was opened with the words of gratitude that Sefer Educational programs coordinator A. Shaevich expressed to the sponsors, who supported the program: AVI-CHAI Foundation and Genesis (as part of CAF). Addressing the audience, Sefer Center director V. Mochalova emphasized the symbolism and significance of the time and the place of the School on Jewish Studies, and shared a dream of opening Jewish Studies departments at universities all over the CIS. The creation of such department in St.Petersburg is an important step in the right direction. Head of the Department of Jewish Culture Professor I. Tantlevsky, developing the idea of the role of St. Petersburg in the development of academic Jewish studies, noted a unique database of sources, stored in the archives of the city, which is the largest in Russia. Chairman of the Academic Council of the Center Chase Hebrew University Professor Cyril Aslanov gave the speech in which he drew attention to the key role of philology, a gem of academic Jewish Studies, as he put it.
As part of the official opening the books published by the Sefer in 2011/2012 were presented.
The Summer school program included five lectures courses in five thematic torrents that have been given by the leading educators, university professors from St. Petersburg and Israel: D.Romashov, U.Gershovich, A.Nemirovskaya (Jewish Thought), S.Goldin, V.Kelner, V.Mochalova (History of the Jews of Eastern Europe), S.Parizhsky, V.Chernin and V.Dymshits (Jewish Literature), Z.Kopelman, S.Aslanov, I. Vasiliev (Contemporary Israeli culture), A.Ivanov, E.Hazdan and I.Mamonova (Jewish art).
Besides the regular lecture courses the school program included intellectual game "What? Where? When "(A. Vorobyov), master-classes in Epigraphy (V.Dymshits), Ethnography (M.Bruk), Jewish dance (Y.Bruk), Jewish Music Library (E. and E.Hazdan) and Information wars with the participance of Israel (I.Vasilev). In addition, especially for school students a number of excursions about Jewish St. Petersburg were held by L.Landa, V.Trifsik and V.Dymshits.
This summer 93 students from Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, Germany, Latvia and Israel took part in the school.