Jewish Studies

As a broadly interdisciplinary field, Jewish studies is a particularly appropriate area of study within a liberal arts education. The history, philosophy, culture, religion and literature of Judaism and Jewish communities across the globe form a complex, yet intellectually coherent, field of concentration.

Familiarity with the Jewish tradition is required for any significant understanding of Eurasian, North African and Middle Eastern history and politics, of Christianity and Islam, of modern western philosophy and theology, and of European and American literature and culture. The Jewish tradition of reflective and persistent questioning of the most enduring human issues offers unique challenges to Earlham students, whatever their major fields and cultural or religious backgrounds.

A tradition of reflective and persistent questioning

Earlham offers students multiple ways to engage with and learn about Jewish traditions.

Practice in community

The Jewish Student Union is a student-led religious life group on campus that offers students the ability to practice the Jewish faith in community with others.

Learn more about religious life groups

Live in a theme house

Apply to live in Beit Kehillah (Jewish Cultural Center), one of the College’s theme houses. Residents sponsor weekly Shabbat dinners, maintain a library of resources on Jewish life and faith, and provide special events on holidays and other occasions.

Learn more about College Houses

Our faculty

Earlham’s Jewish Studies program draws on faculty insight from across the curriculum, providing students with perspectives from history, philosophy, politics, literature, gender studies and other fields.

Program information

Students of Jewish studies develop a deep understanding of religious and cultural diversity, and this understanding often contributes to their careers. They are working in Jewish community organizations, studying in rabbinical programs and Christian divinity schools or concentrating on related subjects as they pursue doctorates in history, politics, religion, languages and literature.

As a liberal arts college, Earlham offers multiple disciplinary and interdisciplinary majors and minors in which students cultivate deep and specific knowledge and experience. Equally important, the College expects every student to develop broad, general skills and proficiencies across the curriculum.

As part of their general education, students complete six credits in each academic division of the College: humanities, natural sciences, social sciences, and visual and performing arts. In addition, students meet requirements for first-year courses, analytical reasoning, perspectives on diversity and wellness.

Learn more about general education at Earlham.

To earn a minor in Jewish studies, you need to complete 15 hours of course work in Jewish studies.

View a full list of courses and their descriptions.

Students who have recently completed minors in Jewish studies majored in a variety of disciplines including English, religion, psychology, history, computer science, philosophy, politics, and music. If you are interested in pursuing profound questions about history, literature, culture, politics and religion, the Jewish Studies minor can help you engage meaningfully and critically across disciplines and texts to deepen your understanding of world history and culture, specifically as it relates to Judaism and Jews.

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