Joan S. Friedman

Joan Friedman

Associate Professor - Middle Eastern & North African Studies, History, Religious Studies

Office: Kauke 006
Phone: 330-263-2448
Email: jfriedman@wooster.edu
Website

Degrees

  • B.A., Pennsylvania 1974
  • M.A.H.L., Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion 1977
  • M.Phil., Columbia 1986
  • Ph.D., Columbia 2003

Courses Taught

  • The Hebrew Bible
  • Judaism
  • Biblical Hebrew I & II
  • Jews, Judaism, and Jew Haters in the Modern World
  • History of the Jews
  • The Holocaust
  • Israel/Palestine: Histories in Conflict

Awards and Professional Memberships

  • National Jewish Book Award Finalist, "Guidance, Not Governance": Rabbi Solomon B. Freehof and Reform Responsa, Hebrew Union College Press, 2013
  • Chair, Central Conference of American Rabbis Responsa Committee
  • Member of the Association for Jewish Studies, American Historical Association, Jewish Law Association, the Central Conference of American Rabbis, and the Women’s Rabbinic Network

Publications

  • “When Authority Is a Form of Dissent: Postwar Guides to Reform Ritual Observance.” In Authority and Dissent in Jewish Life, 30th annual proceedings of the Klutznick-Harris Symposium on Jewish Life, ed. Leonard J. Greenspoon. Omaha: Creighton University Press, 2020, 147-165.
  • “‘The Pilgrim Rabbis’: Reform Rabbis Behaving Badly in a Lost Satire.” American Jewish Archives Journal vol. 70, nos. 1-2 (2018): 69-116.

In addition, as chair of the CCAR Responsa Committee since 2019, she is the primary author of decisions in Jewish law that guide Reform Judaism in North America. Those decisions are available at https://www.ccarnet.org/rabbinic-voice/reform-responsa/.

Research Interests

American Judaism, Jewish law, American Jewish popular culture