Jeffrey Spitzer

Jeffrey Spitzer teaches Bible, Rabbinics, Jewish history and Jewish leadership, and is a house associate at the American Hebrew Academy, a Jewish boarding school in Greensboro, North Carolina. He previously was the chair of the Rabbinic Literature department at Gann Academy, a Jewish high school in Waltham, Massachusetts, and has taught in numerous adult Jewish education programs.

Articles by Jeffrey Spitzer

Taxing Times

The economic history of the Jews in Palestine in late antiquity

The Rabbis and the Common Folk

The evolving relationship between the rabbinic sages and the Jews on the street.

Josephus Flavius

Josephus Flavius both participated in and wrote the history of the Jewish interaction with Rome.

Pe’ah: The Corners of Our Fields

Rabbinic commentators interpreted the law of leaving the corners of one's field for those in need in light of their own concerns about the poor.

Surrendering to the Romans

The remarkable parallels in the stories of Josephus' and Rabban Yohanan ben Zakkai's surrenders to the Romans reveal more about Jewish memory than Jewish history.

The Synagogue and the Study House

These two institutions reflect the dynamism and the tensions in late antique Jewish society.

Babylonian Exile

The Temple's destruction, the transfer of leadership to Babylon, and the Persian return to Israel reflect the larger political conflicts of the ancient world.

“Whose Leaves Do Not Wither”

In Jewish sources, the leaf is a metaphor for the fragility and durability of life.

Rejecting the Vegetarian Label

I don't eat meat, but I'm no vegetarian.

Providing What is Lacking

Jewish texts on social justice describe the tension between providing what is needed and providing what is affordable.