Lichter Series

The Annual Jacob and Jennie L. Lichter Lecture Series in Judaic Studies

At the beginning of each academic year, the department of Judaic Studies invites the entire community to attend the Jennie L. and Jacob Lichter Lecture Series, made possible by the Jacob and Jennie L. Lichter Fund of the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati. The Lichter Lecture Series, endowed in 1981, is the department's major event of the academic year. Each year the lectures focus on a different theme, and three leading scholars or intellectuals are invited to address it from different angles.

Since the 1980s, the annual Lichter Lecture Series in Judaic Studies has enabled us to bring to UC close to a hundred of the best and the brightest in the various fields of Jewish thought and learning. These lecturers include: Yehuda Amichai, Yahuda Bauer, David Biale, Norman Golb, Paula Hyman, Amos Oz, Rabbi Dr. W. Gunther Plaut, Jonathan D. Sarna, Lawrence H. Schiffman, Sasson Somekh, Norman A. Stillman, James Tabor, Rabbi Mordecai Waxman, Jack Wertheimer, A.B. Yehoshua and Ronald W. Zweig.

Some of the themes of past Lichter Lecture Series have included: 'Eco-Judaism: New Jewish Approaches to the Environment'; 'Foodaism:  Do Jews Make Food or Does Food Make Jews?'; 'The Politics of Freedom'; 'Portraits of Israel: Society and Culture'; 'Jewish Women in a changing Society'; 'Heritage of Spanish Jews'; 'Holocaust and Rebirth'; 'From Spain to America: The Legacy of Spanish Jewry, 1492-1992'; 'Voices of Hebrew Literature'; 'Antisemitism: Modern Realities and Contemporary'; 'American Judaism: Present and Future'; 'Religion in American Society'; 'Biblical Archeology'; 'The Jews of France' ; 'Dead Sea Scrolls'; 'The Menorah'; 'Jews and War in the 20th Century'; 'Maimonides Medicine and Ethics'; and 'Jews and Muslims'; 'Jewish Neighborhood, Jewish City'; 'The Eichmann Trial: Fifty Years Later'; and "Are the Dead Sea Scrolls Dead?."

2019-2020 Lecture

Hatred and Hope

We are living in a precarious time in American history. Increasing incidences of hate have touched many different communities and threaten the pillars of our democracy. If hate is understood better, then approaches to combat it can increasingly become testable theories, and then analyzed and improved. The result can have real-world impact, including creating models for changes in society, government, culture and our individual and communal lives. Jews, Muslims and African- Americans each have traditions that seek to improve the world in which they live. From Jewish tikkun olam and Islamic islah to Martin Luther King’s deep commitment to the repair and healing of the world each of our traditions have something to offer to this fractured world. This year’s Lichter Lecture series will discuss the Intersection of Islamophobia, Anti-Semitism and White Nationalism/Supremacy and the impact of these hateful phenomena on our communities. Breakout sessions will follow the panel and will address practical steps. Leaders from among these three communities will be invited to attend and offer their experience. The lessons learned and plans which emerge will help educators, researchers, advocates and others better analyze and combat hatred in its various manifestations, and construct communities based on principles of peace, human rights, and justice.

All Lichter events are free and open to the public. Refreshments are served after the event; dietary rules are observed.

We encourage reservations: Please contact Sokoni Hughes at : (513) 556-4109 or via email at

Parking : A limited number of prepaid parking tickets for senior citizens is available for the on-campus lectures. In order to secure a ticket, those interested should contact Sokoni Hughes at (513)556-4109 or

The Lichter Lecture Series in Judaic Studies is made possible by the Jacob and Jennie L. Lichter Fund of the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati.

The Judaic Studies department would also like to thank The Jewish Foundation & The Charles P. Taft Center. 

Lichter schedule
Date Speaker Title Location Time Directions
Thursday, October 4, 2018
Sarah Imhoff Associate Professor, Religious Studies, Borns Jewish Studies Program, Indiana University
“Are Jewish Men Manly? A Story of American Masculinity”
Taft Center, 1 Edwards, UC Uptown Campus
7:00 p.m. Directions to Taft Center  
Thursday, October 25, 2018
Michael L. Satlow Professor of Religious Studies and Judaic Studies Brown University

“Men, Women, and Shame among Jews in Antiquity”

Taft Center, 1 Edwards, UC Uptown Campus

7:00 p.m.

Directions to Taft Center  

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Rabbi Susan Goldberg Rabbinic Consultant for the T.V. series “Transparent;” Rabbi, Wilshire Boulevard Temple in Los Angeles
“In the Wilderness (Midbar): the Spiritual Journey of Transparent”
Mayerson JCC, 8485 Ridge Road, Cincinnati, OH 45236
7:00 p.m. Directions to Mayerson JCC