Bible 101

An introduction to the Hebrew Bible, its contents, and its role in Jewish civilization.


Is the Bible God's word?

Bible as Ancient Literature

How the Bible is similar to and different from other ancient Near Eastern literature.

Creating the Bible Canon

How the Bible became a closed corpus of literature.


External texts from the Second Temple period.


Talmud 101

An overview of the Mishnah, Talmud, and other literature of the "oral Torah."


Why this foundational text deserves to be appreciated in its own right -- and not just as a part of the Talmud.

Halakhic Texts 101

Since the Talmud, countless texts have been produced to analyze and codify Jewish law.

Sources and Development

Jewish law undergoes constant development.

Mishneh Torah

Maimonides' halakhic magnum opus.


Literature 101

Storytelling has always been an integral part of Jewish life.


Poetry permeates the High Holiday liturgy.

Elie Wiesel

Holocaust survivor, novelist, memoirist, and Nobel laureate.

125 Books

Charting the landscape of American Jewish literature--125 books at a time.

The New Wave

In the second half of the 20th century, Israeli writers became a voice of critique and protest.



The virtue of the famous Bible commentary by Rashi lies in its diversity.

Isaac Abravanel

A Bible commentator in medieval Spain.

Nehama Leibowitz

A 20th-century educator who changed the face of Bible study.


This Spanish Bible commentator earned a place alongside Rashi.

Commentaries on Rif

Alfasi's groundbreaking legal code invited criticism, defense, and supplementation.