Skip to main content
Expand AU Menu

Center for Israel Studies | Courses & Minor

Questions?

Center for Israel Studies
202-885-3780
cutler@american.edu
Battelle Tompkins, Room T39

Center for Israel Studies
4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20016

2016-2017 Courses

Courses listed may apply to a minor in Israel Studies
AU Registrar Class Schedule.

 

Spring 2017

Israel Between 1967-1973 (3)
(HIST 344.001)
M/TH 4:05 PM-5:20 PM
Yoav Gelber, Israel Institute Visiting Professor
This course discusses the transformation of Israel between the wars of 1967 (Six-Day War) and 1973 (Yom Kippur War): The new spaces, the change from an underdog to a conqueror in the eyes of the world, the excitement of Jews abroad, the elation of the public, the hubris of the army leaders, the fears of the political leaders, the dilemmas of what to do with the occupied territories and their inhabitants, and the illusion of being a regional power that collapsed on October 6th, 1973. Meets with ISR-396.001.


Israeli Society Through Immigration (3)
(HIST 344.002)
M/TH 11:20 AM-12:35 PM
Yoav Gelber, Israel Institute Visiting Professor
This course follows the building of Israeli society through immigration and absorption since the late 19th century until the recent wave of immigration from the Soviet Union and Ethiopia in the late 20th century. Discussions focus on the tensions and controversies that accompanied these processes as well as the similarities and dissimilarities between Israel and other immigrant societies. Meets with ISR-396.002.

 

Arab-Israeli Relations (3)
(SISU 319.001)
TU 8:10-11:00 AM
Boaz Atzili, Associate Professor, School of International Service

A survey of Arab-Israeli relations from their origins to the present. Includes an account of Zionism and Palestinian nationalism, the history of the British Mandate, the Arab-Israeli wars, the involvement of external powers, and the quest for peace. The emphasis is on conflict resolution. Prerequisites: SISU-206 and SISU-210 (may be waived from some non-SIS students in Israel Studies). Counts towards Arab Studies major and minor.

 

Israeli Foreign Policy, 1948-Present (3)
(SISU 330.006)
W 2:30-5:20 PM
Dan Arbell, Scholar-in-Residence in Israel Studies
This course will review the history and evolution of Israel's foreign policy (FP), will examine the principles that have governed FP, and will analyze FP challenges facing Israel globally, regionally, and bilaterally. The course will further analyze major trends and developments in Israel's relations with its neighbors as well as with the international community, at large, and how Israeli diplomacy adapts to advance Israel's strategic goals. Prerequisite: SISU-206 and SISU-230 (may be waived for some non-SIS students in Israel Studies).

 

Negotiating Arab-Israeli Peace (Senior Capstone) (3)
(SISU-415.001)
F 11:20 AM-2:10 PM
Guy Ziv, Assistant Professor, School of International Service
This senior capstone provides students with a deeper understanding of the "final status" issues that have confounded the Israeli-Palestinian peace process: borders, Jerusalem, refugees, settlements, and security. Students focus on the contested narratives, the relevant political actors, and the key international, regional, and internal events that have shaped the dispute, and analyze previous rounds of negotiations. Students, then, partake in a simulation in which they attempt to constructively address the sticking points in Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking. Prerequisites: International Studies major and at least 75 credits.

 

Modern Jewish Civilization (3)
(HIST-245.001)
M/TH 9:45-11:00 AM
Lauren Strauss, Scholar-in-Residence, Department of History
This course surveys Jewish responses to the challenges of modernity. Examines the creation of new Jewish communities in America and Israel, shifts in Jewish political status, and innovations in Jewish religious and intellectual history such as Zionism and Hasidism.


Voices of Modern Jewish Literature (3)
(JWST-210.001)
M/TH 12:55-2:10 PM

Lauren Strauss, Scholar-in-Residence, Department of History
This course explores a variety of literary works analyzing the historical experience of modern Jewish communities in Europe, the U.S., and Israel, emphasizing how migration, racism, industrialization, and political change affected these Jews and their Judaism.


Fall 2016

History of Israel (3)
(HIST 443.001)
M/TH 11:20 AM - 12:35 PM
Michael Brenner, Seymour and Lillian Abensohn Chair in Israel Studies
Traces the development of modern political Zionism in the nineteenth-century Europe; the historical background leading to the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948; and the history of Israel since then, including patterns of Jewish immigration and its relationship to the Arab World. Meets with HIST-643. Usually offered every fall.

 

Israel and Europe (3)
(HIST 496.001)
M 5:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Michael Brenner, Seymour and Lillian Abensohn Chair in Israel Studies
This course deals with the complex relationship between Israel and Europe. It starts with the European roots of Zionism and covers the Holocaust as one of the factors leading to the establishment of Israel. It leads up to present-day relations between Israel and the EU and includes visits to several European embassies with related events. Meets with HIST-696.001 and HIST-696.002.

 

Negotiating Arab-Israeli Peace (Senior Capstone) (3)
(SISU 415.001)
M 2:30 PM - 5:20 PM
Guy Ziv, Assistant Professor, School of International Service
This senior capstone provides students with a deeper understanding of the problems that have confounded the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, in particular the "final status" issues: borders, Jerusalem, refugees, and security. Students focus on the contested narratives; the relevant political actors; and the key international, regional, and internal events that have shaped the dispute. As well, previous rounds of negotiations are reviewed in order to analyze what went wrong. Students then partake in a simulation in which they attempt to constructively address peacemaking. Prerequisite: International Studies major and at least 75 credits.

 

Politics and Public Policy in Israel (3)
(GOVT-432.002
F 11:20 AM - 2:10 PM
Dan Arbell, Scholar in Residence, Israel Studies
Israel's parliamentary democracy is a mosaic in which ethnic, class, religious, national and migration considerations play a dynamic part in the intricacies of the political system. This course provides an overview of the geopolitical history of Israel and the Arab-Israel conflict for the pre-state era until the present, and also an introduction to the principles that guide Israel's political system and the cleavages in Israeli society which greatly affect developments and trends in politics and policy. Prerequisites: GOVT-130 or GOVT-231 or GOVT-232, and a minimum of 2.5 GPA.

 

U.S. Israel Relations (3)
(SISU-330.002)
TH 11:20 AM - 2:10 PM
Guy Ziv, Assistant Professor, School of International Service
This course explores the evolution of U.S. relations with Israel, from the establishment of the Jewish state in 1948 to the present day. Along the way, it examines key milestones in U.S.-Israel relations, beginning with President Truman's controversial decision to buck the U.S. foreign policy establishment and formally recognize the state of Israel; the wartime American airlift in 1973; the U.S. role in Arab-Israeli peacemaking, from Secretary of State Henry Kissinger's shuttle diplomacy to the two Camp David summits and beyond; and the U.S. role in providing military, economic, and diplomatic aid to the Jewish state. The course analyzes how a combination of sentimental, political, and strategic factors have led to the formation of a wholly unique bilateral relationship; characterized at once by both tight bonds and inherent tensions. Prerequisite: SISU-206 and SISU-230.

 

Back to top


Israel Studies Minor

AU's undergraduate minor in Israel Studies is one of the premier programs of its kind in the United States. Its focus is on Israel's history, unique political democracy, multicultural society, economic development, immigrant absorption, and international contributions in the arts, business, technology, sciences, and letters. Courses are offered in numerous areas including sociology, Jewish studies, history, and the School of International Service. Another feature of the minor is its seamless connection with study abroad in Israel. AU students are encouraged to study in Israel and receive credits toward the Israel Studies minor. The Center for Israel Studies complements the minor by hosting conferences and events to further educate individuals about Israel and Israel's contributions to the world.

For additional information, please see the Israel Studies Minor Requirements. You may also contact Dr. Michael Brenner, Abensohn Chair of Israel Studies, 202-885-2752, mbrenner@american.edu; or Laura Cutler, Managing Director, 202-885-3780, cutler@american.edu.