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Shoah and Faith: Reflections from the Rebbe of the Warsaw Ghetto

5th March @ 13:00

Woolf Institute, Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 0UB


The Woolf Institute is delighted to welcome Rabbi Dr Zvi Leshem who will be giving a lecture in the Weston Room at the Woolf Institute on 5 March 2018, 1-2pm. The title of the lecture is 'Shoah and Faith: Reflections from the Rebbe of the Warsaw Ghetto'.

Rabbi Leshem is Director of the Gershom Scholem Collection for Research in Kabbalah and Hasidism at the National Library in Jerusalem.

Rabbi Leshem was born and raised in the United States. His father is a Holocaust survivor. He received a BA in European and Jewish History from Columbia University and a BA in Talmud and Rabbinic Literature from the Jewish Theological Seminary. In 1979 he made Aliyah with his wife Julie and began many years of Yeshiva study, receiving Rabbinic ordination from the Chief Rabbinate of Israel in 1988.

He served for several decades in senior positions in Torah education in Israel as well as a community rabbi. He received his MA in Jewish History and Philosophy from Touro College in Jerusalem in 2002 for his thesis on The Piaseczner Rebbe's pre-Holocaust writings and in 2007 completed his doctorate; "Between Messianism and Prophecy: Hasidism according to the Piaseczner Rebbe" under Professor Moshe Halamish at Bar-Ilan University.

Rabbi Leshem's scholarly publications focus on the mystical techniques of the Piaseczner Rebbe, Rebbe Nahman of Breslov, Hasidic education, the philosophy of Rav Shagar and Gershom Scholem. He is also the author of a collection of original homilies entitled "Redemptions: Contemporary Chassidic Essays on the Parsha and the Festivals" (2006).

Since 2011, he has served as the director of the Gershom Scholem Collection at the National Library of Israel where he also serves as Judaica reference librarian.

How to book

This is an open event. There will be refreshments.

For further information, please contact Lea Taragin-Zeller at

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