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TIJS Graduate Fellowships

Fellowship Opportunities for Ph.D. Work in Jewish Studies

The Tam Institute for Jewish Studies (TIJS) at Emory University offers several top-off fellowships to support Ph.D. students pursuing Jewish studies topics in any of the James T. Laney Graduate School’s programs, including the Graduate Division of Religion and the departments of history, comparative literature, and anthropology. These fellowships supplement the generous departmental fellowships and tuition waivers awarded to all accepted Ph.D. students. No separate application is required; departments and programs will nominate appropriate candidates who are offered admission.

Emory Ph.D. students working in Jewish studies–related fields can expect:

  • Training in disciplinary-based departments with support from a nationally prominent Jewish studies program

  • Close contact with distinguished faculty in your home department and access to twenty Jewish studies scholars across the University

  • The resources of a major research institution, including significant Judaica library holdings and manuscript collections

  • Teaching assistantships, research associateships, and opportunities to teach your own courses, both in your home department and in Jewish studies

  • Generous support for language training, study abroad, and summer research

To apply to Emory Ph.D. programs, complete the James T. Laney Graduate School application.

For further details on Ph.D. programs in history, religion, and other Emory departments that work with TIJS, explore the links on the TIJS Graduate Studies website or contact Malory Mibab at or 404.722.6646.

Fall 2015 Fellows

Group 2015

DavisKeenan Wills Davis is a doctoral student in the Graduate Division of Religion with a focus on bioethics and Jewish studies. As an undergraduate, he studied neuroscience and Jewish studies (interdisciplinary) at the University of Virginia, graduating with highest distinction. He then served as a corps member of Teach For America and for three years taught high school chemistry, physics, biology, and math. Last year, Davis completed an MA in bioethics through Emory University’s Center for Ethics with a thesis analyzing the impact of biotechnology on human dignity. His primary interests are virtue ethics, moral psychology, and the relationship between humans, nature, and technology.

FochtCaralie Focht is a first year PhD student in the Hebrew Bible program. She earned a Bachelor of Social Work from James Madison University and a Master of Divinity from Vanderbilt Divinity School. Focht’s current research interests include trauma in the Hebrew Bible and Jewish hermeneutics, and she hopes to connect her research to current religious practices through the Religious Practices and Practical Theology concentration.

FochtRichard Purcell is a PhD student in the Hebrew Bible program within Emory’s Graduate Division of Religion. He earned a BA in Biblical Studies from Brewton-Parker College and an MAR in Biblical Studies from Yale Divinity School. Purcell is interested in the expression of various ideologies within the Hebrew Bible, particularly in ideals of gender, geography, religion, politics, and other aspects of world view, as well as the intersection of effective rhetoric and ideology within formative texts. He hopes to explore how such ideological places of discourse are employed as rhetorical strategies in the creation, maintenance, and subversion of different ancient communities. He is also interested in modern literary theory and how such theory may aid in illuminating a text’s possible ideological position(s) and rhetorical place(s) in ancient communities.

Fall 2014 Fellows

Group 2014

BrittinghamMatthew Brittingham graduated with a bachelor's degree in Religious Studies from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (2012) and recently completed an M.A. in Jewish Studies at Indiana University-Bloomington (2014). At Emory, he will be studying American Jewish religious cultures with an emphasis on Jewish engagement in modern science and biblical criticism. Aside from these areas, Matt has interests in religion and media, Yiddish, and Jews in American sport.

StrakhovaAnastasiia Strakhova is a Ph.D. student in History at Emory University interested in Jewish emigration from the Late Russian Empire to America and transatlantic cultural exchanges, which followed the resettlement creating strong transnational bonds between Jewish communities on both sides of the ocean. Coming originally from Ukraine, she received her B.A. Degree (with Distinction) from International Solomon University. She continued her education at Central European University in Budapest, Hungary, earning an M.A. in Comparative History (with Distinction). Pursuing a Jewish Studies specialization, Anastasiia devoted her Master’s thesis to the image of America portrayed on the pages of Voskhod [The Sunrise], one of the most influential Jewish journals published in Saint Petersburg during 1881-1906. For her dissertation project Anastasiia plans to look at the representations of America in other Yiddish and Russian-language Jewish periodicals published in the Imperial capital during the reign of Tsars Alexander III and Nicholas II. Apart from the university degrees, Anastasiia also has a Certificate of accomplishment of The One Year Jewish Studies Program at Paideia – The European Institute for Jewish studies in Stockholm, Sweden.

Fall 2013 Fellows

Group 2013

AbdugafurovRahimjon Abdugafurov is a student in the doctoral program of Islamic Civilizations Studies in the Department of Middle Eastern and South Asian Studies at Emory, where he studies fatwas, Islamic legal opinions, about Christians and Jews, aiming to contribute to a better understanding of Muslim relations with Christians and Jews. Rahimjon holds a five-year higher education diploma in Oriental Studies and Arabic Philology from Namangan State University, Namangan, Uzbekistan; a Master’s in Education from Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN; and an M.A. in International Studies from the University of Wyoming, where he studied Muslim views about Christians and Jews in Uzbekistan. Rahimjon comes from the Republic of Uzbekistan, a former Soviet republic in Central Asia.

Cornell Collin Cornell is Ph.D. student in the Hebrew Bible program of the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory University. He earned a Master of Divinity degree from Princeton Theological Seminary and a B.A. in biblical studies from Columbia International University. He plans to research the legal and cultic materials of the Pentateuch, their narrative integration, their ancient near eastern analogues, their function in postexilic communities, their ideologies of the social body, and their visions of divine presence. He is interested more broadly in Semitic philology, ritual studies, and biblical theology, and he also intends to make a special study of pedagogy for introductory Bible courses.

HoelleLisa Hoelle is a Ph.D. student in the Jewish Religious Cultures program of the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory, studying contemporary American Jewish identity. She is currently interested in how conceptions of American Jewish identity inform and shape intra-community ethical practices. She has outside interests in education, ritual, and virtue ethics. Lisa earned a B.A. (summa cum laude) in philosophy and international studies from Illinois Wesleyan University, an M.A. in philosophy at the University of Minnesota, and a graduate certificate in Jewish studies at the Graduate Theological Union. She has also conducted research at the Kierkegaard Centre in Copenhagen and worked as the Ritual and Religious Education Coordinator for a synagogue in San Francisco, and the European Culture and History Program Coordinator at the Danish Institute for Study Abroad.

PannkukJustin Pannkuk is a Ph.D. student in the Hebrew Bible program in the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory University. Before coming to Emory, he earned a B.A. (summa cum laude) in religion from Northwestern College in Iowa, and a Master of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary. He was a Fulbright Fellow in Old Testament at the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Germany, where he focused on the relationship between the Aramaic texts from the Dead Sea and the Book of Jubilees. His current research interests center on the early Jewish apocalyptic movement, its literature and worldview, and how its theological complex provided ancient Jewish communities with a conceptual framework within which they could make sense of their present experience. He is interested in tracing the development and religious function of a number of important themes in apocalyptic literature, such as the concern for the problem and origins of evil and its management within pious communities, conceptions of time and the relationship between protology and eschatology, and the theological construction of moral anthropology.

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Fall 2012 Fellow

KleinerJohannes Kleiner is a Ph.D. student in the Hebrew Bible program of the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory University. He earned Master's degrees in theology both from the University of Münster, Germany, where he was a fellow of the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation, and the Franciscan School of Theology, Berkeley. His research focuses on the relationship of ancient Near Eastern people to animals as well as natural phenomena and nature's representation in the Hebrew Bible. He is excited to explore early Jewish interpretations of non-human actors in biblical texts, as well as to embark on the scavenger hunt to find Jewish forerunners to the modern environmental movement.

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Fall 2011 Fellows

Group 2011

CrawfordCarrie Crawford entered the Ph.D. program in history at Emory after earning a B.A. in history from Mercer University and an M.A. in global, international, and comparative history from Georgetown University. Her research explores the often unstable and fluid nature of immigrant racial classification, investigating this phenomena both as a process imposed from outside and one constructed from within.  In particular, she is interested in how Jewish immigrants to the Southern United States negotiated racial identities in a region that was obsessed with the maintenance of a white/black racial binary.  By paying close attention to change over time, she plans to explore the degree to which Jews complicated the national narrative of race during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.  Related interests include anthropology of religion, immigration law, and sociology of collective violence.

DriverCory Driver came to the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory with a B.S. in economics from Purdue University and an M.A. in near eastern languages and cultures from Ohio State University. His research focuses on memory creation of the "other" in formerly mixed ethno-religious communities of Morocco. His experience in ethnography of religion includes more than two years in Morocco with the Muslim Imizghen and an academic year in Israel speaking with Moroccan-Israelis to understand their self conceptions as part of communities which formerly existed together.

KimJi-Yun Kim is a Ph.D. student in the Hebrew Bible program of the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory. She holds a Master of Theology degree from the Candler School of Theology at Emory, where she received the Felix Robertson Hill Scholarship, and a Master of Divinity degree from Methodist Theological University in Seoul, Korea, where she received the Honored New Entrance Scholarship as well as the Best Thesis Award from the Korea Association of Accredited Theological Schools. Before that she earned B.A. and M.A. degrees in French language and literature from Yonsei University in Seoul. Her research interests lie in the study of legal texts in biblical and postbiblical literature.

GermanyStephen Germany is a Ph.D. candidate in the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory with a focus on the Hebrew Bible. Stephen received a Bachelor of Arts in religious studies, French, and Spanish from Oglethorpe University in Atlanta, and received a Master of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School. Between his undergraduate and graduate studies, he received a DAAD scholarship to pursue coursework in biblical studies in Germany. Stephen's current interests in the field of Hebrew Bible center on ritual in ancient Israel and conceptions of "temple" in biblical and Second-Temple Jewish texts.

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Fall 2010 Fellows

Group 2010

FarberZev Farber is a Ph.D. student in the Jewish Religious Cultures track of Emory's Graduate Division of Religion. He received his B.A. in psychology from Touro College in 1997, and his M.A. in ancient Israelite history from Hebrew University in 2002. Before returning to school for a Ph.D., he taught Talmud and Bible in a number of high schools in the US and Israel. In addition to his academic training, Zev received his rabbinic ordination and advanced ordination (dayanut) from YCT Rabbinical School in 2006 and 2010 respectively, and is currently a member of the board of directors of the International Rabbinic Fellowship. His main research interests are in ancient Israelite history and early Judaism.

KarlinMichael Karlin is a Ph.D. student in the American Religious Cultures course of study in the Graduate Division of Religion of Emory University.  His research interests include contemporary American Jewish practices, American Jewish history, and how these practices and histories reflect changes and continuities in broader American religious cultures.  Michael received his M.A. in Religious Studies from Georgia State University and is a Fellow of the Wexner Foundation, having completed the Wexner Heritage Program.

SnyderJosey Bridges Snyder was a Morehead scholar at the University of North Carolina, where she earned a B.A. in religious studies, and a Woodruff scholar at the Candler School of Theology, earning a Master of Divinity degree. Now a Ph.D. student in the Graduate Division of Religion's Hebrew Bible program at Emory, Josey is primarily interested in the history of biblical interpretation and reception. She is especially fascinated by rabbinic midrash and would like to consider possible connections between rabbinic midrash and modern writings by the same name.

StewartAnne Stewart is a Ph.D. student in Hebrew Bible in the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory. In 2005, she received a B.A. summa cum laude in religion and biblical literature from Smith College, where she worked closely with Professor Joel Kaminsky on questions of universalism, particularism, and election in the Hebrew Bible and Jewish tradition. She received her M.Div. from Princeton Theological Seminary in 2008. Stewart’s research interests include biblical theology, Israelite wisdom literature, and biblical poetry.

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Fall 2009 Fellows

Group 2009

SchulmanJason Schulman grew up in Englewood, NJ and attended the Ramaz Upper School in New York. He received his B.A. in History from Columbia University, studied abroad for a semester at the University of Melbourne (Australia), and spent a year at the Pardes Institute for Jewish Studies in Jerusalem. He is now pursuing a Ph.D. in history at Emory with a specialization in American Jewish history. He has worked as a political speech writer as well as a historical intern at the Institute of Southern Jewish Life in Jackson, Mississippi. He enjoys basketball, playing drums, and comic book movies.

SternNehemia Stern is a Ph.D. student in the Jewish Religious Cultures program of the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory. He received his B.A. with a double major in Judaic studies and anthropology, and his M.A. in cultural anthropology, both from Binghamton University. He is broadly interested in the anthropology of Jews and Judaism, the history of social theory, and modern Jewish thought. Nehemia’s dissertation topic will ethnographically explore issues relating to contemporary religious Zionism in Israel.

SvarchAriel Svarch is a Ph.D. student in Latin American history. He undertook his undergraduate studies in history and journalism at the Universidad Torcuato Di Tella, in Buenos Aires, Argentina. An atypical porteño, he excels neither at soccer nor at tango dancing. His main research interests deal with immigrant culture and sociability, particularly the Ashkenazi immigration to Latin America around the first decades of the twentieth century. Ariel is also unhealthily fond of Yiddishkeit.

TilfordNicole Tilford is a Ph.D. student in the Hebrew Bible program of the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory, with a focus on early Jewish Hermeneutics. She completed both her undergraduate degree in classical Greek and Latin and her Masters degree in religions of western antiquity at Florida State University. Throughout her studies, Nicole has been increasingly fascinated by early Jewish communities living between 200 B.C.E. and 200 C.E. and how they reflected upon and interpreted their ancestral traditions. Currently, this interest revolves around how specific biblical characters, such as Sarah or the Strange Woman of Proverbs, were interpreted and discussed by early Jews. Nicole is also interested in the conception of medicine and disease in the late Hellenistic and early Roman eras and how these early views of the human body influenced texts of this era.

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