Judaic Studies Lectureship welcomes Dr. Hollenberg

The College of Idaho is set to welcome Dr. David Hollenberg as the first guest of the 2016-17 Craig H. Neilsen Foundation Lectureship in Judaic Studies series. Hollenberg will give a public lecture titled “Scholars under Siege: Zaydi Scholasticism, Manuscript Culture, and the Forgotten War in Yemen,” at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 3, in the Kathryn Albertson International Center (KAIC), room 107. Refreshments will follow.

Hollenberg also will hold a 2:40 p.m. seminar in MHAC 206 on “Israelites, Jews, and Pre-Islamic Monotheists in Fatimid-Ismaili Sources.”

An associate professor of Arabic and Islamic studies at the University of Oregon, Hollenberg is the founder of the Yemen Manuscripts Digitization Initiative ( YMDI is devoted to preserving the manuscripts of Yemen, the largest number of unexplored Arabic manuscripts in the world. Under Hollenberg’s direction, YMDI received a $330,000 grant to digitize and disseminate 267 of the manuscripts, which are currently at risk of being destroyed by war.

Hollenberg’s research interests include medieval Ismailism, modern Yemeni Zaydi scholasticism, and manuscript culture. His recent publications include The Yemeni Manuscript Tradition and Beyond the Qur'an; Ismaili ta'wil and the Secrets of the Prophets.

The Craig H. Neilsen Foundation Lectureship in Judaic Studies brings dignitaries, scholars and public figures to campus to speak about Jewish religion, interfaith dialogue, culture, history, arts and current events. It is part of the College’s Howard Berger-Ray Neilsen Chair in Judaic Studies, which was created to promote greater understanding of Jewish traditions, culture and philosophy in Idaho and the West. The lecture with Dr. Hollenberg is being put on in collaboration with the Department of History and the Arabic-Hebrew Club.

The College of Idaho has a 125-year-old legacy of excellence. The C of I is known for its outstanding academic programs, winning athletics tradition and history of producing successful graduates, including seven Rhodes Scholars, three governors, four NFL players and countless business leaders and innovators. Its distinctive PEAK Curriculum challenges students to attain competency in the four knowledge peaks of humanities, natural sciences, social sciences and a professional field—empowering them to earn a major and three minors in four years. The College’s close-knit, residential campus is located in Caldwell, where its proximity both to Boise and to the world-class outdoor activities of southwest Idaho’s mountains and rivers offers unique opportunities for learning beyond the classroom.  For more information, visit