Sponsored by The Jewish Center Princeton
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UNRAVELING THE COMPLEXITIES OF THE ISRAELI LEGAL SYSTEM:
SEEKING AN EQUILIBRIUM BETWEEN HALACHA AND SECULARISM
ZOOM LECTURE WITH QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
ALEXANDER KAYE, PH.D.
The tension between secular politics and religious fundamentalism is a problem shared by many modern states. This is certainly true of the State of Israel, where the religious-secular schism provokes conflict at every level of politics and society. Driving this schism is the idea of the halakhic state, the demand by many religious Jews that Israel should be governed by the law of the Torah as interpreted by Orthodox rabbis. Understanding this idea is a priority for anyone with an interest in its future.
In his presentation, Dr. Kaye will trace the foundations and evolution that have led to the current complex Israeli legal system. He will provide case histories showing the path and rationale for legal decisions in several areas, including marriage, women’s rights, and personal identity.
Alexander Kaye, Ph.D., is a leading authority in the history of Jewish thought, with a special focus on political thought, the history of law and theories of Jewish modernity. His research in the history of Israel focuses on the relationship between law, religion, and politics, in particular, the history of religious Zionism. His latest book, The Invention of Jewish Theocracy (Oxford University Press, 2020), traces the origins of the idea, to track its development, and to explain its crucial importance in Israel's past and present. Dr. Kaye is the Karl, Harry, and Helen Stoll Assistant Professor of Israel Studies at Brandeis University. Dr. Kaye’s book will be available for sale at a discount to attendees.
This is the first in a series of IDIC presentations focusing on facets of contemporary Israeli law, understanding the Legal System in Israel and Its Impact on Israeli Society. We will examine the interaction of religious law, civil law, military law, and international law, and specific outcomes of those interactions.
The Israel Dialogue Initiative Committee of The Jewish Center is charged with providing congregants with programming that examines in depth those aspects of Israel and Israeli society that are sometimes controversial or confounding to American Jews and seldom broached in other TJC programming.
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Sponsor: The Jewish Center