The intellectual and spiritual culture of the religious elite of
Sephardic/Oriental Jewry in Israels formative years is virtually a closed
book, from the perspective of academic research. To initiate a change of
the tide with regard to this virtually unknown realm, we have decided to
call an international research conference, entitled:
Sephardic/Mizrahi rabbis in Israel, 1948-1967:
Intellectual Creativity and Socio-Religious Leadership
The conference is sponsered by The Interdisciplinary Graduate Program
Contemporary Jewry, Bar Ilan University; The Institute for Research on
Zionism, Tel Aviv University; and The Shalom Hartman Institute, Jerusalem.
The conference is called for the 1st and 2nd of January, 2002. Topics
should be submitted to the undersigned by July 31, 2001. We look forward
to your participation in this ground-breaking conference. Please feel free
to contact us for any further information, explication or assistence.
Dr. Shalom Ratzabi
Dr. Zvi Zohar
Tel-Aviv University & Bar Ilan University &
Open University of Israel Shalom Hartman Institute
Suggested foci for research include, inter alia: Israeli Realities --
responses and attitudes of this rabbinical elite towards issues such as:
Contemporary religious and cultural trends; The securalism of mainstream
Israeli society; The ingathering of exiles; Democracy and political
institutions; The Israeli legal system; The status and role of women ;
Social justice, social inequalities; Non-Jewish minorities in Israel;
Education ; Ultra-Orthodoxy (haredim) and Haredi life and institutions.
Religious Zionism and Religious-Zionist life and institutions;
Preservation of ethnic-religious variety vrs. religious unification;
Security matters and Army service.
Halakha, Kabbala and Jewish Thought including issues such as: Kabbalic
thought and writings; Halakhic thought and writings; Attitudes towards
folk beliefs and practices; Theology and religious thought; The value and
significance of general culture; Religious validation of (and/or:
rejection of) Israels existence.
To facilitate the initiation of research in this uncharted field, we
compiled a preliminary partial list of relevant hahamim: Chief rabbi
BenZion Uziel; Chief rabbi Yitzhak Nissim; Rabbi Ovadiah Hedaya; Rabbi
Eliyahu Pardes; Rabbi Yitzhak AbiHatseirah; Rabbi Joseph Kappah; Rabbi
Ezra Batzri; Rabbi Nissim Binyamin Ohana; Rabbi Amram AbuRabia; Rabbi
David Shlush; Rabbi BenZion Abba Shaul; Rabbi Moshe Malka; Rabbi Matzliah
Mazuz; Rabbi Moshe HaCohen; Rabbi Ezra Atiyya; Rabbi Mishael Dahan; Rabbi
Shaul AbenDanan; Rabbi Rahamim Hai Hawitah HaCohen; Rabbi Tzedaka Hutzin;
Rabbi Hayyim David HaLevi; Rabbi Ovadiah Joseph; Rabbi Aharon Shweika; et.