Dr. Eva Frojmovic Gives Lectures at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion

Thursday, January 1, 2004

Dr. Eva Frojmovic, Director of the Center of Judaic Studies Department at the University of Leeds, England will present The Gustave A. and Mamie W. Efroymson Memorial lectures Wednesday February 25 through Sunday February 29, 2004 at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR) located at 3101 Clifton Avenue. These lectures include a manuscript workshop, a Food for Thought lunch and lecture, a Taft Museum lecture on “Artistic Expressions of Faith,” and a concluding lecture at HUC-JIR. All lectures are free and open to the public and take place in Mayerson Hall Auditorium.

Dr. Frojomovic received her undergraduate degrees from the University of Freiburg in archeology and art history and her M.A. and Ph.D. in art history from the University of Munich. She has been a fellow at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., the Bibliotheca Hertziana in Rome, and the Warburg Institute in London. Since 1996 she has been the director of the Centre for Jewish Studies at the University of Leeds in Great Britain. Her publications cover a variety of themes in the history of Hebrew books and iconography: Hebraica and Judaica from the Cecil Roth Collection (1997), essays and talks on illustrated mohel books and circumcision liturgies, woodcuts in the earliest printed Haggadah, and images of the Sanctuary in Hebrew Bible manuscripts. Most recently, she was a contributor to and editor of Imaging the Self, Imaging the Other: Representations of Jews in Medieval Visual Culture (2002).

“Pride and Polemics: Exploring the Self-Image of Medieval Jews Through Their Illuminated Manuscripts,” the featured Food For Thought lecture, will be given at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, February 25. Just as Jewish art, film, and literature today offer a rich selection of images that tell much about how people see themselves and others in the world so too the illuminated images of medieval Jewish books communicate the very specific identity concerns of those who made and used them. A hot lunch will begin at noon, and is available for $8. For this Food For Thought, there is no charge for the lecture or special dessert reception.

“Illuminated Manuscripts in the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion Klau Library Rare Book Collection: A Session with Original Works,” will be an interactive session based on the rich holdings of the manuscript collection at HUC-JIR. The session, taking place Thursday February 26 at 11:45 to 1:00 p.m., will look at the Hebrew book, before the age of printing, as a physical object of Jewish cultures in Europe and the Mediterranean.

“Women of Valor? Images of Jewish Heroines” given at 7:30 p.m. at the Mayerson Auditorium will focus on medieval images of biblical heroines and will ask challenging questions about the representations of women in medieval Jewish culture. This Artistic Expressions of Faith Lecture Series is sponsored in cooperation with the Taft Museum of Art, Cincinnati Art Museum, Skirball Museum Cincinnati at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, the Islamic Center of Greater Cincinnati, and the Edward B. Brueggeman Center for Dialogue at Xavier University. A pre-lecture, presented by Rabbi Kenneth E. Ehrlich, on “Women in the Torah,” will begin at 7:00.

“Illuminating Jewish Books in the Middle Ages: Jewish-Christian Conflict or Collaboration?” given on Sunday, February 29 at 4:00 p.m., traces the beginnings of Jewish-German visual culture in the 13th century in the light of Jewish Christian dynamics. Scholars today generally agree that the production of a medieval illuminated Jewish book was a collaborative effort involving Jewish scribes and Christian illuminators. 

Founded in Cincinnati in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is the oldest institution of higher Jewish education in the Western Hemisphere and the academic and professional leadership development center of the Reform Movement. The College-Institute trains rabbis, cantors, religious school educators, and Jewish communal workers at its four campuses in Cincinnati, New York, Los Angeles and Jerusalem. In addition to training professional leadership to serve the Jewish community, HUC-JIR’s School of Graduate Studies awards Masters and Doctoral degrees to men and women of all faiths.

The Gustave A. and Mamie W. Efroymson Memorial Lectures have been made possible through a generous endowment by the Efroymson family of Indianapolis, Indiana. The community is cordially invited to attend. Free parking is available for all the lectures. Mayerson Hall is handicapped accessible. More information on the Efroymson Lectures can be found by downloading the brochure (67KB), available in PDF format. For reservations call Marcia Cruse (513) 221-1875 ext. 353 or e-mail her at mcruse@huc.edu.


Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's leading institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding. www.huc.edu