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Susannah Heschel, “Ethical Challenges of Scholarship”

Susannah Heschel, the Oregon Humanities Center 2015 Tzedek Professor in the Humanities, will speak on the “Ethical Challenges of Scholarship” on Wednesday, January 28th at 7:30 p.m.

“Scholarship,” Heschel maintains, “is an ethical endeavor…It is first and foremost about the pursuit of truth.” Yet, she insists, our choices of topics and the material we present, our evaluations and interpretations, and the conclusions we draw are infused with the politics and cultural commitments of our era, and they reflect our moral judgments. In her Eugene lecture Heschel will examine some of the ethical challenges scholars face using three case studies: 1) the 19th-century development of Christian scholarship on Judaism and Jewish scholarship on Christianity; 2) the politicization of scholarship in universities in Nazi Germany in the 1930s; and 3) contemporary debates over the presentation of the Israel-Palestine conflict within the fields of Middle East Studies and Israel Studies. Her conclusion will emphasize the importance of the Humanities as a guide to dealing with the thicket of ethical quandaries facing scholars in a wide range of fields.

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