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April 9, 2002

Third Annual Myron M. Weinstein Memorial Lecture on the Hebraic Book Will Be Held at the Library of Congress on May 7

Topic is "Isaac De Lattes' Sermons and the Impact of Printing on Italian Jewish Piety"

Bernard Dov Cooperman, who holds the Louis L. Kaplan Chair in Jewish History at the University of Maryland, College Park, will deliver the third annual Myron M. Weinstein Memorial Lecture on the Hebraic Book at the Library of Congress on Tuesday, May 7, at 6:30 p.m. The lecture will be held in LJ 119, first floor of the Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First Street S.E. No tickets are required.

The history of Italian Jewry during the late Renaissance is one of Professor Cooperman's major academic interests, and his talk "Isaac De Lattes' Sermons and the Impact of Printing on Italian Jewish Piety" will draw on printed and manuscript works of the era to illuminate the spiritual and social revolution that accompanied ghettoization. Dr. Cooperman sees the 16th century as an age of transition, when immigration, changing policies of the Roman Catholic Church, and the popularization of kabbalah (Jewish mysticism) all combined to reshape the Jewish community and its culture. His recent publications include In Iberia and Beyond: Hispanic Jews Between Cultures (1998), Rememberings: The World of a Russian-Jewish Woman in the Nineteenth Century (2000), and The Jews of Italy: Memory and Identity (2000).

The Myron M. Weinstein Memorial Lecture features scholarly presentations on Hebrew manuscripts and printed books, as well as on documentary and textual materials in other Hebraic languages, such as Yiddish and Ladino. The scope of the lectures reflects the wide-ranging and eclectic interests of Myron Weinstein (1927-1998), who served his entire 29-year career at the Library of Congress in the Hebraic Section. He served as chief of the section from 1980 until his retirement in 1984. In 1991, following his retirement, he edited the commentary volume of the facsimile edition of "The Washington Haggadah," a 15th-century illuminated Hebrew manuscript housed in the Library's Hebraic Section. The lecture series is made possible by a grant from the family of Myron M. Weinstein.

The Hebraic Section, now part of the African and Middle Eastern Division of the Library of Congress, began operation in 1914; it concentrates on Jewish culture, Israel, the Hebrew language, biblical studies, and the ancient Near East. A guide to the Library's Hebraic and Judaic collections was published in 2001 as one of a three-volume set of softcover, highly illustrated descriptive guides to the collections of the African and Middle Eastern Division. The set is available from the Library's Sales Shop for $37. Call (888) 682-3557 for credit card orders.

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PR 02-048
04/09/02
ISSN 0731-3527

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