Current Scholars-in-Residence


The HBI scholar-in-residence program offers distinguished scholars, writers and communal professionals the opportunity to produce significant work in the area of Jewish studies and gender issues while being freed from their regular institutional responsibilities. HBI scholars-in-residence receive a monthly stipend (for up to 5 months), office space at the Brandeis University Women’s Studies Research Center, and the opportunity to network and exchange ideas with HBI staff and faculty at Brandeis and surrounding institutions. Scholars-in-residence contribute to the life of the HBI by immersing in the institute’s weekly activities, participating in HBI conferences and programs, and delivering a public lecture.

Current Scholars-in-Residence

Spring 2013

Rahel WasserfallRahel Wasserfall

Rahel Wasserfall is the Director of Evaluation and Training at CEDAR (Communities Engaging with Difference and Religion) and Resident Scholar at the Women’s Studies Research Center at Brandeis University (WSRC). She has broad experiences in the evaluation of educational programs in complex multilingual and cross cultural settings. Her work in the world of evaluation focuses on the pragmatic approach to knowledge that continually queries: “knowledge for whom and for which purposes”. Previous assignments include: Director of Evaluation and Liaison to Schools of The Center for the Advancement of Hebrew Teaching and Learning Inc (HATC); Senior Research Associate with Education Matters, Inc and the Mandel Center for Jewish Education at Brandeis. At CEDAR, she has conducted the yearly evaluation and is part of the leadership team. In the past year, she has moved into training and leading new program developments and evaluations internationally. She is an anthropologist with a PhD from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, who has wide experience in three different continents. She has published in the area of the anthropology of gender, pluralism and qualitative methods. She is the editor of Women and Water: Menstruation in Jewish Life and Law (UPNE, 1999). She is currently working on a book: Eating Together with Difference based on her 10 years of evaluating the CEDAR network. She is also a committed yoga practitioner and teacher, having completed teacher training in the Iyengar tradition.

Janice Silverman RebiboJanice Silverman Rebibo

Janice Silverman Rebibo, a Massachusetts native and native English speaker, is a widely published Hebrew poet. Five books of her original Hebrew poetry and her translations from Hebrew are in print in Israel and the United States. Zara Betzion, her collected Hebrew poetry, received awards from the Office of the President of Israel and others. My Beautiful Ballooning Heart, her collected English poetry, was published in 2013, and a new English chapbook, How Many Edens, is slated for 2014. The title poem of My Beautiful Ballooning Heart was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She is an accomplished editor in both languages. She holds a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in Jewish Studies from Hebrew College and completed a two-year writing program led by a number of Israel’s legendary editors and poets at Beit Ariela in Tel Aviv. Her expanded Master’s thesis on intertextuality is titled, “Why Quote God? Three Modern Israeli Poets Allude to Sacred Texts”. She has led university and community literary seminars and writing workshops and possesses deep knowledge of criticism in both languages.  Professionally, Janice has served as Coordinator, Executive Director and Senior Program Officer of educational non-profits in Israel and the US.  In these capacities, she has worked closely with hundreds of teachers in Israel and North America. She is currently SPO and Technology Director of Hebrew at the Center in Newton, MA, part of the Institute for the Advancement of Hebrew at Middlebury College.  She brings to the current project her textual and linguistic insight along with her knowledge of school settings and the teacher’s career path and culture.

Ornat TurinOrnat Turin

Ornat Turin is the head of the media education department at Gordon College of Education in Haifa, Israel.  She teaches courses such as media literacy in a globalized world, teaching - the realistic versus the cinematic experience, and education in a multicultural society. Dr. Turin has completed her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in sociology at Haifa University. Her M.A. thesis investigated the experience of reading romance novels in Israel. She completed her Ph.D. at Tel Aviv University on the subject of the gendered aspects of teacher's images in Israeli media. Her book, "The Portrayal of Teachers in Israeli Media,” published in December, 2013.  Dr. Turin is a social activist and a member of the managing committee of the non-profit organization, Israeli Social TV and of "Women to Women", a feminist grass roots organization.  At HBI, she will research common ways of portraying female teachers in movies and television through their didactic, stressed, slow and nasalized intonation. The study aims to examine to what extent this stereotype reflects a true representation of reality.

Brygida GasztoldBrygida Gasztold

Dr. Brygida Gasztold is a Fulbright Scholar at the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute. She holds an MA degree and a doctorate degree from Gdańsk University, Poland, and a diploma of postgraduate studies in British Studies from Ruskin College, Oxford, UK and Warsaw University, Poland. She is assistant professor at the Technical University of Koszalin, Poland. Her academic and teaching interests include American literature, American Jewish literature, Canadian Jewish literature, as well as the problems of immigration, women and gender, and ethnic identities in modern American literature. She has published To the Limits of Experience: Jerzy Kosiński’s Literary Quest for Self-Identity (2008), Negotiating Home and Identity in Early 20th Century Jewish-American Narratives (2011) and essays on immigrant literature and ethnicity. As a scholar-in residence at the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute, Dr. Gasztold will be working on her post-doctoral project about the representations of female characters in recent American Jewish narratives. Her research focuses on the gendered stereotypes, such as the Ghetto Mother, the Ghetto Girl, the Jewish Mother, the Jewish American Princess, as well as contemporary images of American Jewish women. She examines two aspects of their literary representations: religion/spirituality and the body.

Irina RebrovaIrina Rebrova

Irina Rebrova is a Ph.D candidate in the Center for Research of Anti-Semitism at Technical University, Berlin, Germany. The working title of her thesis is “Memory about the Holocaust in Soviet and Post-Soviet Russian Discourses on World War II, (the Case of North Caucasus).

She is also an assistant professor at the department of history, political science and social communications at Kuban State Technological University, Krasnodar, Russia. From 2004 to 2012, she taught courses such as Russian history, the History of the Kuban Region, and Theory and Practice of Mass Communications. She completed her candidate dissertation paper in history at North-West Academy of State Affairs in St. Petersburg, Russia in June 2005. Her thesis discussed the historical and psychological aspects of written memoirs on World War II. Upon completion of her degree she has received a qualification relevant to two areas: Russian History and Historiography, Sources and Methods of History science. She has also received M.A. degree in gender studies (“Gender. Society. Culture”) ,  a program of European University in Vilnius in 2008.

Since 2006, she has studied oral history and social memory of World War II. Rebrova has conducted several research projects on everyday life behind the front line, experience of women at war, children and war, and social memory of war period.  She is author of more than 50 articles, one collective monograph on oral history and collective memory on World War II and two edited volumes of articles on social memory.

Past Scholars-in-Residence