Arabic as a Jewish Language
Judaism was definitively formed under the influence of Arabic. There would be no Maimonides, no L’kha Dodi or Adon Olam without Arabic. Our understanding of the Hebrew language itself is Arabic-infused. “Arabic as a Jewish Language” will equip students with the ability to read Arabic and encounter students with the basics of Arabic grammar. The course stands alone and will also lay the foundation for further Arabic study. “Arabic as a Jewish Language” will engage with the Arabic-Jewish world of the High Middle Ages, from Andalus in the west to Cairo in the east and beyond.
Rabbi Michael Davis was born in the United Kingdom into an Orthodox family. He grew up in Israel in the National Religious education stream, including in Yeshivat Hesder. He earned his BA in Musicology at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and continued with advanced studies at various academic institutions. He has spoken at universities and other institutions across North America. His work has been displayed at the Art Institute in Chicago. His activism was praised by Archbishop Desmond Tutu. During the course of his synagogue career Rabbi Davis has worked in Conservative, Reform and Renewal congregations. He has been closely associated with groups within the Reconstructionist movement. Rabbi Cantor Davis served as an examiner for cantorial ordination at Hebrew Union College. Rabbi Davis was a professor at Hebrew Seminary in Skokie, IL, for 13 years.
Classes are accredited for rabbinic ordination credit through Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, Philadelphia, PA.
- NEW! Winter Class
- January 9–March 12, 2024
- 7:00 pm Central
This is an introductory language class. Graduates of the course will be able to read Arabic and begin to engage in the world of Arabic-Hebrew cognates and grammatical influences. Time on homework is expected at a ratio to class time of 2:1 in order to guarantee success.
Cost: $700 for rabbinical students; $250 for auditing students.
Registration: To register for the class, use the Contact form.
For more information, see Arabic as a Jewish Language FAQ.
Synagogue Partner: Congregation Bene Shalom