Shaul's blog posts

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The Timeless and the Timely: Sacralizing Political Activism in the Campaign for Soviet Jewry

A lecture delivered on February 25, 2016 at the University of Michigan, the Frankel Institute for Judaic Studies.  

Posted by on February 25, 2016 in Lectures and Podcasts, ,


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Encounters and Journeys: Cultivating Jewish Peoplehood?

This December 2015 blogcast sponsored by the Consortium for Applied Studies in Jewish Education focuses on travel as a form of Jewish education, ethical engagement and community-building. Click here to view.

Posted by on December 19, 2015 in Media, , , , ,


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Seeing Jewish Studies Through Christian Students’ Writing

From the Brandeis University Mandel Center’s blog, “Learning about Learning”, Jan. 6, 2015: The Zohar may seem an unlikely text to use for the first session of a 100-level Introduction to Jewish Studies class. I chose to open with it, however, for three reasons…  Continue Reading »

Posted by on January 6, 2015 in Media, ,


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Reshaping the World Through Vision, Activism, Ideas and Initiative (Not Demography)

Wexner Foundation Blog, May 22, 2014 I have now seen several rounds of brouhaha over Jewish population surveys: 1990, 2001, and now Pew 2013. One would think that the conversation would advance each decade. This is social science after all; time marches on and we build our knowledge cumulatively, on the shoulders of giants as…

Posted by on May 22, 2014 in Media, ,


Diaspora, Indigenous and Minority Education

Historical Perspectives on Diaspora Homeland Tourism: ‘Israel Experience’ Education in the 1950s and 1960s

2013. In Diaspora, Indigenous and Minority Education 7(2): 99–113. Homeland tourism is a powerful medium of diasporic education. Yet efforts to understand the enterprise are hampered by neglect of the field’s history. This article contributes to the historiography of diaspora homeland tourism by examining the emergence American Jewish educational tours of Israel in the 1950s and…

Posted by on April 23, 2014 in Articles, Research, , , , , , ,


spiritedcommitment

Review of Spirited Commitment: The Samuel and Saidye Bronfman Family Foundation

Review of Roderick MacLeod and Eric John Abrahamson’s Spirited Commitment: The Samuel and Saidye Bronfman Family Foundation. (McGill–Queens University Press, 2010.)  2013. Journal of Modern Jewish Studies 12:2. Pp. 360-1 From the review: “Commissioned by the SSBFF on its fiftieth anniversary, this institutional history follows the Montreal-based foundation from its establishment in 1952 to its…

Posted by on April 23, 2014 in Research, Reviews, ,


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Religious Ambivalence in Jewish American Philanthropy

2013. In this chapter, I consider Jewish philanthropic federations, and their ambivalent relationship to Jewish religion from the 19th century to the present. I attempt to show that much of this ambivalence stems from the fact that these philanthropic institutions understand themselves not only to be agents of voluntary action for the public good but…

Posted by on April 23, 2014 in Articles, Chapters, Research, , , , , ,


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In Its Own Image: Independent Philanthropy and the Cultivation of Young Jewish Leadership

2011. This study examines Jewish American leadership development initiatives from the 1970s to the present day, focusing on the programs’ roots in the changing landscape of Jewish philanthropy and a shift in agenda-setting power from communally governed Jewish charitable federations to independent family foundations. Shaul Kelner 2011. “In Its Own Image: Independent Philanthropy and the…

Posted by on May 10, 2013 in Articles, Chapters, Research, , , , ,


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The Bureaucratization of Ritual Innovation: The Festive Cycle of the American Soviet Jewry Movement

2011. Jewish Cultural Studies 3:360-391. Since the 1960s, social movements have been key forces in the development of new religious rituals that are reshaping American Judaism. This article examines how the American movement to free Soviet Jews systematized and even bureaucratized the process of ritual innovation as it developed an annual calendar of activities pegged…

Posted by on December 12, 2011 in Articles, Research, , , ,


DynamicBelonging

Constructing Jewish Belonging through Mass Tourism: Self-Narration in Israel Experience Programs

2011. An exploration of how identity narratives are constructed on  Birthright Israel. Shaul Kelner. 2011. “Constructing Jewish Belonging through Mass Tourism: Self-Narration in Israel Experience Programs.” Chapter 9 in Harvey E. Goldberg, Steven M. Cohen and Ezra Kopelowitz, eds. Dynamic Belonging: Contemporary Jewish Collective Identities. New York: Berghahn Books. Pp. 171-187.

Posted by on December 10, 2011 in Articles, Chapters, Research, , , ,