Shoshana Cohen Will Be Scholar-in-Residence at Keneseth Israel

Many members of the Louisville Jewish community who have lived here for more than five years remember Dave Kahn as a kind community leader who loved Judaism and education. When he reached his 100th birthday, he and his sons, Arnold and Ronald, decided the best way to celebrate was to give back. So they set up “The Dave and Reva Waldman Kahn Fund for Jewish Learning” to ensure comprehensive Jewish learning for both Keneseth Israel Congregation and the larger Louisville Jewish Community.

Unfortunately, Kahn passed away before the fund could be implemented, but his sons are actively planning of events supported by the fund. It is the Kahns’ desire to bring in high caliber speakers, rooted in Jewish tradition, who bring fresh perspectives that move us forward as a people.

This year, in cooperation with the Central District of United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, Keneseth Israel, with the support of the fund, will bring Shoshana Cohen to Louisville as a scholar-in-residence from November 15- November 17, for a series of lectures that will explore “Ancient Text, Contemporary Issues.”


Cohen, from the Conservative Yeshiva in Jerusalem, will present three sessions, all in different settings to accommodate various tastes and interests. Her areas of expertise are Tanakh, Midrash and gender. She presents a close reading of the Torah texts and uses those texts to look carefully at our own lives and practices from another perspective.

At the first session on Thursday, November 15, Cohen will address Women’s Bodies, Women’s Voices: From the Bible to Contemporary Israel. This discussion, for women only, will be at the home of Faye Weinberg at 7 p.m. Desserts and coffee will be served. Call Keneseth Israel, 459-2780, for reservations and directions.

At the second session on Friday, November 16, Cohen will cover Fighting and Loving for Torah: The Passions of Rabbi Yohanan and Reish Lakish. Join KI for hors d’oeuvres, Kabbalat Shabbat and a traditional Friday night dinner starting at 5:30 p.m. The cost of the program is $18 for members and $20 for non-members. Reservations must be made at the KI office by November 9.

In the final session on Saturday, November 17, Cohen will speak about Three Daily Prayers, Three Reasons to Pray (Avodah) during Shabbat morning services, which start at 9:30 a.m. A kiddush will follow.

Cohen is also co-founder of Yeshivat Talpiot, a new egalitarian Yeshiva for Israelis that is redefining religious identity and affiliation in Israel.

She has studied and held fellowships at the Shalom Hartman Institutes, where she also taught Talmud at the Midrashiya High School for Girls. Shoshana is a graduate student at Hebrew University in Ancient Jewish History, with a BA from Brandeis University in Judaic Studies. She is a graduate of the prestigious Advanced Talmud Institute at Matan in Jerusalem and was one of the founding faculty members of Yeshivat Hadar in New York, where she taught for two summers.

For more information or transportation assistance, please contact Keneseth Israel Congregation 459-2780 or kicon

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