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November Events

Michael Chabon and Adam Rovner headshot
Sun, Nov. 2
6:30 PM
CJS faculty Adam Rovner leads JAAMM Fest conversation with Michael Chabon, Pulitzer-Prize winning author

Michael Chabon is an American author and one of the most celebrated writers of his generation. Chabon’s first novel, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh, was published when he was 25 and catapulted him to literary celebrity. Chabon has said the "unapologetic Jewish stance" in his writing is only possible because he is what he called a "post-Rothian" writer, not breaking ground the way Roth or others Jewish writers of prior generations had to do. "I benefit from the struggles of my parents and grandparents. They did all the hard work," Chabon said.

Michael Chabon lecture and conversation is part of JCC's annual JAAMM Fest.

Sun, Nov 2
6:30 PM
Adults $18 / $15 Students & Seniors
Elaine Wolf Theater
MACC at the JCC
350 S. Dahlia St.
Denver, CO 80246

Purchase Tickets

Kurtzer head shot
Wed, Nov. 5,
10:15 AM - 12:45 PM
Past, Present, and Future of Jewish Memory:
Reconsidering Holocaust Memory
Seminar and Panel Conversation with Dr. Yehuda Kurtzer

How does a community connect memory & heritage with living in the present & constructing a vibrant purposeful future?
What are the implications for Holocaust memory, memoir & memorialization?

Dr. Kurtzer, JAAMM Fest Scholar in Residence, will explore these questions with DU and CU faculty:

  • Lydia Gil Keff (DU, Judaic Studies, Languages & Literatures) 
  • Sarah Pessin (DU, Judaic Studies, Philosophy)
  • Adam Rovner (DU, Judaic Studies, English)
  • Elias Sacks (CU Boulder, Jewish Studies, Religious Studies)

Wed, Nov. 5
10:15 AM-12:45 PM
Adults $18 / Free Students
Anderson Academic Commons
Special Event Room #290, (Main Floor)
University of Denver
2150 E. Evans Avenue
Denver, CO 80208

Purchase Tickets

Dr. Kurzter’s other events as part of JAAMM Fest 2014:

About Dr. Kurtzer:
President of the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America, Dr. Kurtzer earned his doctorate in Jewish Studies from Harvard and his MA in Religion from Brown. He is an alumnus of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship and the Bronfman Youth Fellowship. Dr. Kurtzer’s book, Shuva: The Future of the Jewish Past, is a work of constructive theology offering new thinking on how contemporary Jews can and should relate to the past while living profoundly in the present.

About the JAAMM Fest Scholar In Residence:
The JAAMM Fest Scholar in Residence is sponsored by the Denver Jewish Learning Collaborative comprised of the Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Denver, the Department of Jewish Life & Learning at the Robert E. Loup Jewish Community Center, and Kabbalah Experience. Co-sponsors for this year's program include Beth Evergreen, B'nai Havurah, CAJE, Jewish Family Service of Colorado, Judaism Your Way, Rocky Mountain Rabbinical Council, Rodef Shalom, Temple Emanuel and Temple Sinai.

Zion book Cover
Sun, Nov. 9
6:00 PM
Book launch of CJS faculty Dr. Adam Rovner's In the Shadow of Zion: Promised Lands before Israel

Join us for the launch and celebration of Dr. Rovner’s new book, In the Shadow of Zion: Promised Lands before Israel, which recounts the mostly forgotten history of the Jewish Territorialist Movement and its champions.

Sun, Nov. 9
6:00 PM
Adults $10 / $8 Students & Seniors
Phillips Social Hall
MACC at the JCC
350 S. Dahlia St.
Denver, CO 80246

Purchase Tickets


IN THE SHADOW OF ZION brings to life the amazing true stories of six exotic visions of a Jewish national home outside the biblical land of Israel. Israel's successful establishment has long obscured the fact that eminent Jewish figures, including Zionism's prophet, Theodor Herzl, seriously considered settling enclaves beyond the Middle East. Christians and Jews, authors and adventurers, politicians and playwrights, and rabbis and revolutionaries all worked to carve out autonomous Jewish territories across the globe in remote and often hostile locations, including Angola, Kenya, Madagascar, Suriname and Tasmania. The would-be founding fathers of these imaginary Zions dispatched scientific expeditions to these far-flung regions and filed reports on the dream states they planned to create. But only Israel emerged from dream to reality.

IN THE SHADOW OF ZION explores this remarkable shadow history of Jewish nationalism, making this an important book for understanding the trajectory of Zionism and the contemporary Middle East. A gripping narrative drawn from the author's own travels and from his meticulous research in archives the world over, IN THE SHADOW OF ZION recovers the mostly forgotten stories of these promised lands and of the fascinating figures who championed them. These individuals included the man credited with reviving Hebrew as a spoken language, a lovelorn Christian adventurer, two famed African explorers, a Yiddish-speaking member of Lenin's first Soviet cabinet, and a cast of author-activists hailing from America, England, and Germany. Provocative, thoroughly researched, and written to appeal to a broad audience, IN THE SHADOW OF ZION offers a timely perspective on Jewish power and powerlessness.

Dr. Adam Rovner is Associate Professor of English and Jewish Literature at the University of Denver. His articles, essays, translations and interviews have appeared in numerous scholarly journals and general interest publications. Rovner's short documentary on Jewish territorialism, No Land Without Heaven, has been screened at exhibitions in New York, Paris, and Tel Aviv.

third spacing image
Sun, Nov. 16
1:15 PM
Rocky Mountain Jewish Historical Society Annual Meeting & Performance by Theatre Or of Kindertransport by Diane Samuels

After Kristallnacht, the Kindertransport rescue mission transported 10,000 children, most of whom were Jewish, to safety in England. The majority never saw their parents again. The play, Kindertransport, is the poignant story of a child of the transport who wants to bury her past, and her relationship with her daughter, who needs to understand her mother’s story in order to forge her own identity.

Light refreshments and a short Rocky Mountain Jewish Historical Society Annual Meeting will precede the play.

Sun, Nov. 16
1:15 PM RMJHS Annual Meeting
2:00 PM Kindertransport performance start time
Premier Sponsor tickets $35 / $20 General tickets
The Pluss Theater
MACC at the JCC
350 S. Dahlia St.
Denver, CO 80246

Purchase Tickets by calling 303-871-3016
Download the PDF for this event.

third spacing image
Thurs, Nov. 20
4:00 PM
Thursdays - An Experiment in Transdisciplinarity
The Center for Judaic Studies and the DU/Iliff Joint PhD Program in the Study of Religion[JDP] will co-sponsor a year long experiment in thirdspacing called Third Thursdays. Faculty and graduate students from the JDP will gather at 4 PM every third Thursday of the month at the Holocaust Memorial Social Action Site to practice the transdisciplinary encounter imagined by Soja's thirdspace. Each month, light refreshments will be provided and we will suggest a simple theme or idea to stimulate open conversation and engagement.

If you have questions, please contact Michael Hemenway at


Past Events
Check out event photos on Flickr