The Manfred R. Lehmann Memorial Master Workshop in the History of the Jewish Book

Sunday, May 11, 2014 - 9:00am - Monday, May 12, 2014 - 5:00pm
Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies, 420 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, Pa 19106


The Jewish Studies Program at the University of Pennsylvania, in conjunction with the University of Pennsylvania Libraries and the Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, are pleased to announce the fourteenth annual Manfred R. Lehmann Memorial Master Workshop to be held on May 11-12 (Sunday-Monday), 2014, at the Katz Center. The topic is The Jewish Book, Halakhah, and Minhag. This year’s workshop will be led by Professor Daniel Sperber, President of the Institute of  Advanced Torah Study at Bar-Ilan University and Professor Emeritus of Talmud. Professor Sperber is one of the world’s leading authorities on the intersection of Jewish booklore and halakhah. He is the author of numerous books on Rabbinic literature and the language and realia of the Greco-Roman World, and the multi-volume work Minhagei Yisrael, many of whose chapters deal with issues of halakhah, minhag, and booklore. 

This year’s workshop will be devoted to intersections between Jewish law and customs and the Jewish book. Topics to be covered include the Masorah (and problems of misunderstanding it due to its  transmission); the impact of material features of the book (like lacunae and misprintings) on halakhah; the role of  the emender; the corrective use of manuscripts and early printings for the decisor; iconography and its interpretation; and the use of illustrations and other paratexts as sources for the historical reconstruction of minhag and halakhah. Because the Workshop will involve textual study, participants should be able to read unpointed Hebrew texts. 

The workshop is open to professors and independent scholars, professional librarians in the field of Jewish and related studies, and graduate students in Jewish Studies. Attendance at previous workshops is not a prerequisite for admission.

For faculty and professionals, tuition is $250. In addition to attendance and all materials for the workshop, the tuition includes two or three nights in a hotel (double-occupancy) for the nights of May 10 and 11 (with the option of May 9), and all meals and refreshments (all kosher) during the course of the workshop. Graduate students may apply for a full scholarship to the workshop. To apply for the scholarship,  the graduate student should write us giving the details of his or her academic program and a brief statement explaining how the workshop will further his or her academic studies. S/he should also ask a faculty advisor to write us a letter of recommendation on the student's behalf.  

Attendance is limited. If you are interested in attending the workshop, please notify us immediately. Full payment must be received by March 1, 2014. Make checks payable to Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania. Registration form: registration LW2014.pdf

Please address all correspondence to:


Lehmann Workshop

c/o Jewish Studies Program

711 Williams Hall

255 S. 36th Street

Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305



The Manfred R. Lehmann Memorial Master Workshop in the History of the Jewish Book has been made possible by a generous contribution from the Manfred and Anne Lehmann Foundation along with grants from Mr. Albert Friedberg, the Lucius N. Littauer Foundation, Andrew H. Cohn, Esq. C'66, and the University of Pennsylvania Research Foundation.



Jewish Studies Program
711 Williams Hall, 255 S. 36th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305
215-898-6654 / 215-573-6026 fax /