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Storm Still Blowin’: Critical Jewish Studies Now

Tuesday, May 24, 2022 at 10:00am to 7:00pm

A. D. White House, Guerlac Room
29 East Ave, Ithaca, NY 14850, USA

Register by May 13 to attend. Space is limited.

This workshop is a unique two-day international workshop being held on the occasion of the thirtieth anniversary of the publication of Jonathan Boyarin’s "Storm from Paradise: The Politics of Jewish Memory." In that book, Professor Boyarin notes the evident reality in which the “storm [is] still blowing” and Benjamin’s “Angel of History” not only resists the still unfolding global crisis, but also marks a proximity to a redemptive, utopian potentiality: “Part of the import of Benjamin’s image is the lesson that we are always once again being driven out; in some sense we have always just lost paradise, hence we are always close to it.” This sense that “something precious is eternally being lost” points to a fugitive alternative politics that is even more relevant today than it was thirty years ago.

The workshop will reflect on three decades of intersecting threads of critical scholarship in postcolonial studies, critical race theory, feminist studies, experimental approaches to the poetics and politics of literary form in academic writing, and the critique of secularism, and collaboratively project these critical possibilities into the future. Storm from Paradise was one of the earliest introductions of these intersecting critical paradigms to the field of Jewish Studies, and we look forward to revisiting and expanding on these questions 30 years later. 

Register by May 13 to attend. Space is limited.

Participants will receive pre-circulated works in progress by Jonathan Boyarin, Daniel Boyarin, J. Kameron Carter, Joyce Dalsheim, Nancy Ko, Elad Lapidot, Laura Levitt, Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin, Naomi Seidman, Noah Tamarkin, Raef Zreik, Itamar Haritan, and Re’ee Hagay. 

Co-sponsored by the Jewish Studies Program, Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies, Department of Anthropology, Department of Near Eastern Studies, Society for the Humanities, Department of History, Department of Literatures in English, Department of German Studies, Institute for German Cultural Studies, Africana Studies and Research Center, and Institute for Comparative Modernities.   

Please adhere to Cornell University’s COVID-19 guidelines. Stay informed at

Workshop schedule:

Monday, May 23

10:30-11:00 Reception

11:00-12:20 Session I

  • Opening remarks
  • “Between Exile and Diaspora: Two Dimensions of Jewish Counter-Histories” Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin, Ben-Gurion University and the Van Leer Institute

12:20-1:20 Lunch Buffet

1:30-4:20 Session II

  • “Palestinian Question as Jewish Question?” Raef Zreik, Tel Aviv University and the Van Leer Institute

  • “The Angel of OTD History” Naomi Seidman, University of Toronto

  • “The Diaspora Politics of Memory: What the Storm Provides” Daniel Boyarin, University of California, Berkeley

4:45-5:35 Session III

  • “When Benjamin Met Mackey: A Fugitive Angelology” J. Kameron Carter, Indiana University, Bloomington

  • “Follow the Sponges: Towards an Environmental History of Jewish Memory and Racial Capitalism in the Global Mediterranean” Nancy Ko, Columbia University

6:35 Dinner at A.D. White Dinning Room

Tuesday, May 24

10:00 Gathering

10:15-12:05 Session IV

  • “Anonymous Remains: Between The Arcades Project and the Cairo Geniza” Re'ee Hagay, Cornell University

  • “Angelus Altnovus: Critique of Postcolonial Zionism” Elad Lapidot, Bern University, Switzerland

12:05-12:55 Lunch Buffet

12:55-2:45 Session V

  • “Memory and Double-Consciousness” Itamar Haritan, Cornell University

  • “Household Tales or Unheimliche Mayses” Joyce Dalsheim, University of North Carolina, Charlotte

3:10-5:30 Session VI

  • “Angels and Lost Overcoats: Letting Go of Certitude with Christa Wolf” Laura Levitt, Temple University

  • “Other Angels/Planetary Conversions” Jonathan Boyarin, Cornell University

6:00-7:00 Reception

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Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies, Jewish Studies Program, Near Eastern Studies


anthro, africal, cashum, engdep, CUHistory, IGCS

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Open To

Cornell faculty and graduate students

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