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Exile and Home: Tales of Traveling Rabbis, 3-Part series with Gila Fine

Hosted By: Orange County Community Scholar Program (CSP)

Why does a great rabbi return to the town that had banished him? Who is the immigrant rabbi cruelly humiliated by his new havruta? And what happens when a man from Babylon marries a woman from Israel? The Talmud is riddled with travel narratives, stories of rabbis who leave their former lives behind and set out into the unknown, disoriented in unfamiliar territory, disparaged by unfriendly locals. This course looks at four such narratives, exploring the trials and tribulations of the traveling rabbis and the lessons they must learn before they can arrive at their destination. (If you remember, the first series the Gila taught for CSP was also about travel stories in the Talmud; this is a continuation of that series, but with an emphasis on difficult and trying stories, which Gila selected because of their relevance to the difficult situation at hand.)

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Gila Fine

Gila Fine is a lecturer of rabbinic literature at the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies, exploring the tales of the Talmud through philosophy, literary criticism, psychoanalysis, and pop culture. She serves on the faculties of the Nachshon Project, Amudim Seminary, the Tikvah Scholars Program, the London School of Jewish Studies, the Community Scholar Program, and WebYeshiva, and has taught thousands of students at conferences, campuses, and communities across the Jewish world. As editor-in-chief of Maggid Books, Gila worked closely with such leading scholars as Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz and Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, publishing over 100 titles of contemporary Jewish thought, including several bestsellers and eight National Jewish Book Award winners. She is also the former editor of Azure: Ideas for the Jewish Nation. Her work has been featured in the BBC, Haaretz, The Jerusalem Post, The Jerusalem Report, Tradition Journal, Jewish News, and The Jewish Chronicle (which selected her as one of the ten most influential Brits in Israel). Haaretz has called her “a young woman on her way to becoming one of the more outstanding Jewish thinkers of the next generation.
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