Great Jewish Books Summer Program

June 20, 2021 Free
(Courtesy photo)
(Courtesy photo)

At the Great Jewish Books Summer Program, rising high school juniors and seniors come to the Yiddish Book Center in Amherst to read selections from important works of modern Jewish literature and consider how they speak to the opportunities and challenges we face today. Under the guidance of college professors, they consider how the rich legacy of modern Jewish literature can inform us in the 21st century.

Although the program’s focus is on reading, this is not school in any conventional sense: Great Jewish Books is a lively program full of social, cultural and recreational opportunities—and no grades—for students who read for the love of reading and who are eager to discover the treasures of the Jewish canon.

Every admitted participant receives a scholarship for the full cost of tuition, room, board, books and special events.

New this year, the program begins with five weeks of virtual classes and activities and culminates in a week in-person at the Yiddish Book Center, where students immerse themselves in a lively world of Jewish culture and live in dorms on the nearby campus of Hampshire College.

Great Jewish Books students:

  • Read and discuss important works of modern literature by writers such as Franz Kafka, Sholem Aleichem, Grace Paley, Philip Roth and Isaac Babel.
  • Learn from college faculty, as well as prominent visiting writers (including, in past years, novelists Allegra Goodman and Jami Attenberg, poet and critic Adam Kirsch and graphic novelist and scholar Ilan Stavans).
  • Develop skills for literary analysis and self-expression that will prepare them for college.
  • Meet other teenagers from across North America who love to read and who care about literature and Jewish culture.
  • Get a taste of college life, seeing what it’s like to live and learn on the campus of Hampshire College.
  • Discover how modern literature connects them to ancient traditions and contemporary ideas.

Sophomores and juniors are eligible to apply. For more information and to apply, click here.

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Fact Sheet
From Sunday, June 20, 2021 at 8:00 am
Until Friday, July 30, 2021 at 8:00 pm
* Registration closes on March 1st

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