Tamara Cohn Eskenazi, Ph.D.
Professor of Bible
Dr. Eskenazi is Professor of Bible, HUC-JIR in Los Angeles. Prior to joining HUC-JIR, she taught at the University of Denver and was also Director of its Institute for Interfaith Studies. Her research focuses on the reconstruction of Jewish life after exile in the sixth century B.C.E., on the role of women in the biblical world, and on the implications of the Bible for the Jewish community today. She is the Editor of the award-winning The Torah: A Women’s Commentary (2008) and recipient of a recent National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship (2011). Her 2011 book, JPS Bible Commentary: Ruth (with Tikva Frymer-Kensky), won a Jewish Book Award as well.
Areas of Expertise
- Women in the biblical world
- Reconstruction of Jewish life after the Babylonian exile
- The relevance of the Bible for today
- Ph.D., University of Denver and the Iliff School of Theology, (1986)
- Discovering Women’s Voices in the Torah
- Return and Reconstruction: Rebuilding Jewish Life after Exile (6th to 4th centuries BCE)
- Out from the Shadows: Women in the Bible
- Why Study Bible Today?
- The Bible and the Seasons of our Life
- JPS Bible Commentary: Ruth (with Tikva Frymer-Kensky) Jewish Publication Society, 2011.
- The Torah: A Women’s Commentary (with Andrea Weiss) (Union of Reform Judaism Press), 2008.
- “Revisiting Our Pasts and our Paths,” in Christ and the Jewish People Today: New Explorations of Theological Interrelationships , ed. P.Cunningham, J. Sievers, M.Boys, H. Henrix, and J. Svartvik, Eerdmans Publishing Co., 2011.
- “Revisiting the Composition of Ezra-Nehemiah: A Prolegomenon,” Foster Biblical Scholarship: Essays in Honor of Kent Harold Richard Richards, ed. F. R. Ames and C. W. Miller. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2010. Pp. 215-234.
- “Ezra,” “Nehemiah” “First Esdra,” New Oxford Annotated Bible. Fourth Edition. Oxford, 2010. Pp. 667-684, 685-707 1633-1655.
- “From Exile and Restoration to Exile and Reconstruction,” In Exile and Restoration Revisited: Essays on the Babylonian and Persian Period in Memory of Peter R. Ackroyd, ed. G. N. Knoppers, L. L. Grabbe, with D. Fulton. New York: T & T Clark. 2009, Pp. 78-93.
- “Unity and Disunity in Ezra-Nehemiah: Responses and Reflections,”Unity and Disunity in Ezra-Nehemiah: Redaction, rhetoric, and Reader, ed. M. J. Boda and P. L. Redditt, Sheffield: Sheffield Phoenix Press, 2008. Pp.315-328.
- “Sara Japhet’s contribution to Ezra-Nehemiah Studies” in Shai le-Sara Japhet: Studies in the Bible, its Exegesis and its Language, ed. M. Bar-Asher, D. Rom-Shiloni, E. Tov, and N. Wazana. Jerusalem: Bialik Institute, 2007. Pp. 37-58.
- “The Missions of Ezra and Nehemiah,”Judah and Judaism in the Persian Period, ed. O. Lipschits and M. Oeming. Eisenbruans, 2006, pp. 509-530.
- Levinas and Biblical Studies, ed. with, G. Phillips, D. Jobling. Brill, 2003/ Semeia. SBL, 2003.
- 'Introduction - Facing the Text As Other: Some Implications of Levinas's Work for Biblical Studies,' Levinas and Biblical Studies, ed. T. C. Eskenazi, G. Phillips, and D. Jobling. Brill, 2003/Semeia; SBL, 2003, pp. 1-16.
- 'Love Your Neighbor As an Other: Reflections on Levinas's Ethics and the Hebrew Bible,' Levinas and Biblical Studies, ed. T. C. Eskenazi, G. Phillips, and D. Jobling. Brill, 2003/Semeia; SBL, 2003, pp. 145-158.
- 'Song of Songs as an Answer to Clines Book of Job,' Reading from Right to Left: Essays on the Hebrew Bible in Honour of David J. A. Clines, ed. J. C. Exum and H. G. M. Williamson. Sheffield Academic Press, 2003, pp. 128-140.
- 'Nehemiah 9-10: Structure and Significance' Journal of Hebrew Studies, September, 2001.
- 'Women in Postexilic Judaism,' 'Foreign Women and the Women of Judah,' and 12 minor entries in Women in Scripture, ed. Carol Meyers. Houghton Mifflin 2000.
- 'Ezra-Nehemiah' and '1 Esdras,' The New Annotated Bible, Oxford, 2000.
- 'Ezra, The Book of.' Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible, ed. David Noel Freedman. Eerdmans, 2000, pp. 449-451.
- 'Out from the Shadows: Biblical Women in the Post-Exilic Era,' in J. C. Exum, ed. The Historical Books: A Sheffield Reader. The Biblical Seminar 40. Sheffield Academic Press, 1997, pp. 349-366 (reprinted also in The Feminist Companion to Samuel and Kings, ed. A. Brenner. Sheffield Academic Press, 1994, pp. 252-271.
- Ezra-Nehemiah. Anchor Bible Commentary. Doubleday
Honors and Professional Affiliations
- On Listening to Our Mothers: The Women of Reform Judaism Women's Commentary on Torah, Chronicle Issue 62 (2003). Available online: http://www.huc.edu/chronicle/62/
- National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship 2012-2013
- Recipient of Making a Difference: Essays in Honor of Tamara Cohn Eskenazi, ed. D.J.A. Clines, K.H. Richards, J.L. Wright (Sheffield Phoenix Press, 2012).
- National Jewish Book Award in Women’s Studies for JPS Commentary: Ruth (with Tikva Frymer-Kensky) (2012)
- National Endowment for the Humanities of “Out of the Shadows: Biblical Women in the Persian Period (Sixth to Fourth Centuries B.C.E.),” (2011)
- National Jewish Council Book of the Year Award for The Torah: A Women’s Commentary (with Andrea L. Weiss) (2008)
- American Society for the Study of Religion
- Society of Biblical Literature (former president, Pacific Coast Region)
- Society for the Study of Old Testament