The Legacy of Sepharad: New and Old Encounters between Spain and the Jews

For the Public
Monday, April 20, 2015
7:30 PM

Congregation Mikveh Israel
44 North 4th St
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Sepharad—the world of Spanish Jewry before the mass expulsion of 1492—possesses an ongoing allure among both Jews and Spaniards, as a long-lost golden age of rich cosmopolitanism, cultural prominence, and convivencia. Since the abolition of the Inquisition in the nineteenth century, Spain has made increasing efforts to recover and lay claim to the Sephardi legacy, through commemoration of historical figures, restoration of synagogues, and support of academic research in Sephardi studies. Most recently, in 2014, the Spanish government extended citizenship to descendants of expelled Sephardi Jews. This lecture will discuss the complexities of the modern reencounter between Jews and Spaniards after centuries of separation.



Michal Friedman

Carnegie Mellon University

Michal Friedman studies the intersections of Jewish and Iberian histories in the modern era and teaches in the Department of History at Carnegie Mellon University. Professor Friedman’s work at the Katz Center focused on the recovery and institutionalization of Sepharad in modern Spain.

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