Mytelka Memorial Lecture – The Yiddish of the Islamic World? When did Jews adopt Arabic and how did this change Jewish Literature?

Oct 11, 2023, 4:30 pm6:00 pm



Event Description

The Program in Judaic Studies' hosting of this year's Mytelka Scholar, Ronny Vollandt, continues with this lecture on Wednesday, October 11.

Most of the Jews under Muslim rule in pre-modern times spoke and wrote Arabic. Jews gradually adopted Arabic for most forms of spoken and written communication and produced a vast branch of Jewish literature in Arabic, usually written in Hebrew letters. My lecture will examine how the transition from Hebrew and Aramaic to Arabic related to new ways of organizing knowledge in post-rabbinic Jewish literature, in which disciplines were subdivided and novel concepts of authorship were introduced through new textual practices. These changes had begun in the 9th century but developed mainly over the course of the 10th and the 11th centuries and have affected Jewish literature ever since.

Open to the public. Reception to follow.


More about Ronny Vollandt

Ronny Vollandt, Ph.D. (2011, University of Cambridge), is a Professor of Judaic Studies at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich. He teaches Rabbinics and Jewish intellectual heritage in the Near East. His research usually relies on manuscripts. That’s where, in his opinion, the fun begins.

He is also the director on the Munich Research Centre of Jewish-Arabic Cultures, which carries out several research projects in the field of Jewish Literature in Arabic.

Program in Judaic Studies
Margo Bresnen