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2012 Conferences and Events

Hosting special events and conferences for the entire campus community allows the Glazer Institute to reach a wider audience and to attract a diverse and distinguished assembly of speakers to discuss some of the most challenging topics of the day. Discussing controversial issues in a respectful atmosphere has allowed audience members not only to better understand the facets of the topic, but also to learn from the example of panelists who respect differences while remaining faithful to their own traditions and ideals. 

Fall 2012 Events

Dr. Marvin Sweeney,
Professor of Hebrew Bible, Claremont School of Theology,
October 11, Kresge Reading Room, Convocation Event
"Jewish Biblical Theology"

Marvin Sweeney - Pepperdine University

Click to watch lecture

Dr. Monica Osborne
Visiting Assistant Professor of Jewish Studies
October 17, Kresge Reading Room
"After Representation: On Catastrophe, Literature, and the Midrashic Impulse"

Monica Osborne - Pepperdine University

Museum of the Holocaust
Educational Tour, October 17, with Zenon Neumark, 
Holocaust Survivor's Testimony, 2:30pm
"Hiding in the Open: A Young Fugitive in Nazi-Occupied Poland"

Museum of Holocaust - Pepperdine University

Museum of Tolerance
Education Tour, October 21
"Holocaust in Literature and Film"

Museum of Tolerance - Pepperdine University

Dr. Ziony Zevit,
     American Jewish University, Distinguished Professor in Bible,                                  
  October 25, 4pm, Elkins Auditorium, Convocation Event
"Of what was Eve guilty"

Ziony Zevit - Pepperdine University

Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)
Education Tour, November 1,
"Hebrew Heroes in Renaissance Art"

Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) - Pepperdine University

Zion Ozeri
November 5, 4pm, PLC 125, Convocation Event
"Jewish Identity, Jewish Diversity through Photography"
November 6, 12pm, Fireside Room, Convocation Event
"The Language of Photography, Spring Board to a Social Action"

Zion Ozeri - Pepperdine University

Click to watch 1st lecture

Click to watch 2nd lecture

Dr. Jeffrey Siker
Loyola Marymount University
November 8, 4pm, Elkins Auditorium, Convocation Event

"The Gospel of John and the Jews"

Jeffrey Siker - Pepperdine University                                   
                                               Click to watch lecture

Dolphin Boy: A Film Screening and Discussion
November 14, 4pm, Elkins Theatre, Convocation Event

Dolphin Boy: A Film Screening and Discussion - Pepperdine University

Dr. Carol Newsom,
Emory University, Charles Howard Candler Professor of Old Testament, 
December 6, Elkins Auditorium, 
"Putting God on Trial:
Job as a Vehicle for Post World War II Experiences of Trauma"

                              Carol Newsom - Pepperdine University

                                               Click to watch lecture

Spring 2012 Events

Art Survives Exhibit

Payson Library
January 13 through February 17

The Glazer Institute, in the spring of 2012, was pleased to the exhibit "Art Survives: Expressions from the Holocaust" in the Payson Library Gallery. This exhibit showcases the work of five Holocaust survivors who created work during and following the Holocaust as a response to their experiences. The exhibition was inspired by Hilary Helstein's documentary film, "As Seen Through These Eyes," which will be shown on campus February 1, in partnership with Pepperdine's Center for Entertainment, Media, and Culture.

Art Survives Exhibit - Pepperdine University

Inspiring Truth: The Simon Hero Foundation
Kresge Reading Room, Payson Library
Tuesday, January 17, 2012 4:00pm

On Tuesday, January 17, at 4 pm, The Diane and Guilford Glazer Institute honored American heroes and Holocaust survivors Bernd and Judy Simon in a special ceremony at Pepperdine University's Payson Library. "Inspiring Truth: The Simon Hero Foundation" featured Bernd Simon telling his extraordinary life story, as well as a special viewing of the art exhibition "Art Survives: Expressions from the Holocaust." Bernd and July Simon survived the Holocaust and concentration camp internment before marrying and moving to the United States. Bernd then enlisted in the Army and flew on a B-24 crew over Europe during World War II. The Simon Hero Foundation has been created to tell their story through a groundbreaking new social media platform.

"Pepperdine is embracing the Simon's story, which embodies the sort of moral courage our school aspires to," says Dean of Libraries Mark Roosa. "And The Simon Hero Foundation's innovative platform is an exciting new tool that inspires learning and action in communities." The Foundation created in their name tells the story of Bernd and Judy Simon through an advanced "social education platform," accessible online and powered by Marquee Productions. The Simon Foundation goal is to create and distribute customized 3D social education platforms for use in museums, schools, and universities worldwide, providing users with the tools to learn, discover, socialize, and educate, in the hope of inspiring truth, compassion, involvement and action in communities.

Lani Netter, founder of The Simon Hero Foundation, says "We are excited to support the Art Survives program through the eyes of true "global heroes" Bernd and Judy Simon by using both traditional and socialized new media."

Inspiring Truth: The Simon Hero Foundation - Pepperdine University

"As Seen Through These Eyes" Screening
Elkins Auditorium
Wednesday, February 1, 2012 7:00pm

As Maya Angelou narrates this powerful documentary, she reveals the story of a brave group of people who fought Hitler with the only weapons they had: charcoal, pencil stubs, shreds of paper and memories etched into their minds. These artists took their fate into their own hands to make a compelling statement about the human spirit, enduring unimaginable odds. In a film that the New York Times calls "compelling," director Hillary Helstein presents As Seen Through These Eyes, a story of how art holds the power to heal and sustain in the face of inhumanity. Centering on the work of Holocaust survivors, the film expands on the Art Survives exhibit in Payson Library through February 17. The film will be screened in partnership with Pepperdine's Center for Entertainment, Media, and Culture and University Libraries and will conclude with a conversation with Hilary Helstein.

"As Seen Through These Eyes" Screening - Pepperdine University

We Are What We Eat: Interfaith Conversations about Religious Dietary Laws and Prohibitions
Hahn Fireside Room, Tyler Campus Center
Thursday, February 16, 2012 7:00pm

In the second installment of the Glazer Institute's series on religion and food, Pepperdine will welcome representatives of each of the three Abrahamic faiths to hold an academic and personal discussion on religious dietary laws. In addition to Dr. Christopher Doran from the Religion Division, the Glazer Institute will welcome Dr. Jody Myers and Dr. Mustafa Ruzgar to the first gathering of experts in religious dietary laws at Pepperdine. Delving into kosher and halal laws, speakers will also discuss Christian traditions on the heritage of food laws and differing perspectives towards them.

Surveying Sacred Space: An Interdisciplinary, Interfaith Symposium
Pepperdine University, Malibu

Day 1: Friday, Feb. 17, 2012, 1:30pm-5:30pm, Hahn Fireside Room
Day 2: Saturday, Feb. 18, 2012, 9:00am-3:45pm, CCB 140

On Friday, Feb. 17 and Saturday, Feb. 18, seven specialist scholars of sacred space from universities across the country will engage and collaborate with Pepperdine faculty members and students from different divisions in an interdisciplinary symposium on space, place, and religious meaning in the Abrahamic and other traditions. These visiting scholars will give presentations on a range of topics, including gendered spaces in Judaism, the role of church architecture in modern American faith, and ritual practices in Asia—to name but a few. Approaching from a variety of different disciplines, Pepperdine faculty members will present on such subjects as: the negotiation of Jewish ritual space in Los Angeles; holy places and political geography in 21st-century Israel; and Muslim spaces of the later Ottoman Empire. A group of Pepperdine undergraduates will also present their research or participate in debates on issues of historical and contemporary relevance in the study of ritual space. This unique gathering of Pepperdine faculty members and students with specialist visiting scholars will provide a productive forum for examining theories, research methods, current events, and sites of communal tension and collaboration. In addition, the symposium will permit the audience to participate in discussions about the nature of relations in, and among, communities of faith and about the ways that these encounters inform, or are shaped by, sacred space.

The Event is open to the public and co-sponsored by the International Studies and Languages Division, the Office of the Provost, the Center for Faith and Learning, and the Office of Intercultural Affairs. The event would not be possible without their generous support. 

Surveying Sacred Space: An Interdisciplinary, Interfaith Symposium - Pepperdine University


The Competing Claims of Law & Religion: Who Should Influence Whom?

School of Law
February 23-25, 2012

The conference at the School of Law, led by the Herbert and Elinor Nootbaar Institute on Law, Religion, and Ethics and cosponsored by the Glazer Institute, will address a host of sub-questions all at the forefront of contemporary debates over the respective roles of law and religion. Among them:

• What constitutional restraints, if any, should be placed on the influence of religion on law?
• What constitutional restraints, if any, should be placed on the influence of law on religion?
• If religious faiths do not assert influence on law, will they be dominated by religious or secular traditions that are willing to do so?
• If religious faiths do not assert influence on law, will injustice reign?
• If religious faiths do assert influence on law, will injustice reign?
• Should the goal be autonomy within religious communities, or will that undermine the creation of an integrated and just society?

In many parts of the world, questions like this will engender not only controversy, but also outright hostility and aggression. At this conference, we look forward to a spirited, engaged, and thoughtful conversation that will explore numerous aspects of all of them.

Faculty Book Discussion Group, Sue Fishkoff's Kosher Nation
March 15-29, 2012

The Glazer Institute invites faculty members from all disciplines to a discussion surrounding Sue Fishkoff's Kosher Nation. The book centers around the spirituality of food and the motivations for the sudden surge of interest in eating kosher, or kashrut, certified food. Citing environmental, spiritual, and health-related reasons, Fishkoff elaborates upon why more than 80% of people buying kosher food today aren't Jewish. Combining this phenomenon with a career in journalism, Fishkoff delves into the business and the morality of kashrut foods. Faculty members will have an opportunity to discuss, from both Christian and Jewish perspectives, whether the act of eating should be considered a spiritual action and why. The group will meet once a week over lunch for three weeks, and will be joined for the last meeting by Sue Fishkoff.

Revenge, Responsibility, and Reconciliation:  Memories of a Grandchild of the Holocaust
Kresge Reading Room, Payson Library
Wednesday, March 7, 2012 12:00 pm

Understanding the Religious Factor in Israeli Politics
Kresge Reading Room, Payson Library
Wednesday, March 7, 2012 4:00 pm

The Diane and Guilford Glazer Institute for Jewish Studies is pleased to welcome Professor Ken D. Wald, Distinguished Professor of Political Science the University of Florida, for two lectures in Payson Library on Wednesday, March 7th.  An expert on religion and politics and Israeli politics, Professor Wald is the author of Religion and Politics in the United States, The Politics of Cultural Differences: Social Change and Voter Mobilization Strategies in the Post-New Deal Period, and The Politics of Gay Rights, among others.   He has been a Fulbright Professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a visiting scholar at the University of Strathyclyde (Glasgow), Haifa University (Israel), Harvard University, and the Centennial Center for Political Science & Public Affairs in Washington, DC. Together with David C. Leege, he coedits the Cambridge Studies in Social Theory, Religion and Politics for Cambridge University Press.  At the University of Florida, he served as Chair (1989-1994) and Graduate Coordinator (1987-1989) of the Department of Political Science. From 1999 through 2004, he served as director of the Center for Jewish Studies.

From 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. on March 7th, Professor Wald will speak in the Kresge Reading Room at Payson Library on the topic “Revenge, Responsibility, and Reconciliation:  Memories of a Grandchild of the Holocaust.”  Later that day, from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. in the same room, Professor Wald will offer his thoughts on “Understanding the Religious Factor in Israeli Politics.”

Borders of Faith
A Series of Events on the Role of Religion in American Foreign Policy
Payson Library and Stauffer Chapel
March 20-22

No more significant issue may be affecting America today – and be less examined in the American consciousness – than how the shared faiths of America impact our foreign policy. Borders of Faith will draw upon the established strengths of Pepperdine University by bringing together leaders of the Christian, Muslim, and Jewish faiths to explore the ways these faiths impact national relationships in the Middle and Near East. It will unfold over the third week of March, 2012, with a keynote speech, panel discussions, and a concluding presentation.

This effort will be a partnership between the Pepperdine University Libraries, the Diane and Guilford Glazer Institute for Jewish Studies, and the Herbert and Elinor Nootbaar Institute for Law, Religion, and Ethics at the School of Law. This project is part of Pepperdine's work as a member institution of the Blair Institute's Faith and Globalization Initiative through the Office of the Provost.

Ambassador Tony Hall, Keynote Speaker
Stauffer Chapel
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 4:00pm

Tony Hall served in the U.S. House of Representatives for more than 20 years, then was appointed Ambassador to the United Nations Agencies for Food Agriculture. He has subsequently worked on a Middle East peace initiative in collaboration with the Center for the Study of the President. He currently serves as the Director of the Alliance to End Hunger. As a keynote speaker for the Borders of Faith symposium, Ambassador Hall will discuss how religion has impacted his own career, and how the power of religion often transcends political boundaries.

An Interfaith Discussion on the Role of Religion in Politics
Kresge Reading Room, Payson Library
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 12:00pm

Leaders of Jewish, Christian, and Muslim communities will continue this discussion through a panel examining how Abrahamic faiths both interact with each other on an international level and affect American foreign policy. Throughout the Los Angeles area and around the world, religious leaders representing each of the Abrahamic religions continue to create meetings in which active laypeople, clergy and religious educators came together to discuss the obligation for peacemaking, conversing both within their own faith traditions and across faith lines.

"America, Faith and the Middle East" with Dr. Arieh Saposnik
Kresge Reading Room, Payson Library
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 4:00pm

America has played a pivotal role in the interactions between Israel and its neighbors, leading dialogue between a Jewish state and Muslim dominated countries. What role has faith within America played in these interactions? To address this issue, we have extended an invitation to Dr. Arieh Saposnik, the Gilbert Chair in Israel Studies at UCLA to chair a panel discussion on this topic. He received his Ph.D. in History and Jewish Studies from New York University, and after holding the Jess Schwartz Chair in Hebrew Culture at Arizona State University, joined the faculty at UCLA in 2009. His research focuses on the history of Zionism and Israel and on the varieties of Jewish nationalism. His book, Becoming Hebrew: The Creation of a Jewish National Culture in Ottoman Palestine was published in 2008. To respond to his talk, the Glazer Institute will welcome Dr. Chris Soper and Dr. James Coyle.

Arieh Saposnik - Pepperdine University

Borders of Faith in American Military Policy
Kresge Reading Room, Payson Library
Thursday, March 22, 2012 12:00pm

Continuing its discussion on religion and foreign policy, the Glazer Institute will partner again with University Libraries and the Nootbaar Institute to connect this topic to military policy. To discuss this issue, we will welcome Pepperdine University professors Dr. Dan Caldwell and Dr. David Simonowitz to discuss how American military policy in the Middle and Near East is impacted by the differing faiths it encounters. An additional panelist will be Iraq veteran and School of Public Policy professor Russel Burgos, offering a valued perspective from the ground on this issue.

Improving Interfaith Relations
Kresge Reading Room, Payson Library
Thursday, March 22, 2012 4:00pm

Moderated by the School of Law Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution on improving interfaith relations, this event will conclude the series by addressing informal efforts at joining religion with the political process in the Middle East and elsewhere. Representatives of the PACIS Project Professor Tim Pownall and Reverend Brian Cox will lead this panel by speaking on their work with the Straus Institute in faith-based reconciliation and Track II diplomacy.

Borders-of-faith Symposium - Pepperdine University

Kosher Nation with Sue Fishkoff
Thursday, March 29, 2012 12:00pm

Fireside Room, TAC

Continuing the Glazer Institute's series on Religion and Food, Pepperdine welcomes Sue Fishkoff, author of Kosher Nation to Malibu to participate in a discussion on the spirituality of food and the motivations for the sudden surge of interest in eating kosher, or kashrut, certified food. Citing environmental, spiritual, and health-related reasons, Fishkoff elaborates upon why more than 80% of people buying kosher food today aren't Jewish. She will be joined in the discussion by Dr. Christopher Doran, who will provide insight into this topic from a Christian perspective and elaborate upon why Christians need to be more conscious about what they eat.

Kosher Nation with Sue Fishkoff - Pepperdine University

Passover Seder
Alumni Park
Thursday, April 5, 2012 2:00pm

In coordination with Dr. Andrea Siegel's course on Western Civilization, the Glazer Institute invites students and members of the Pepperdine community to a Passover Seder on April 5th. Weather permitting, the Seder will take place at Alumni Park (in the event that is not possible, the event will be held in the Seaver cafeteria). Featuring presentations from students highlighting Passover traditions from around the world, attendees will also be able to participate in the Seder and eat a full meal prepared by students. This will conclude the Glazer Institute's series on Religion and Food.

Passover Seder - Pepperdine University