Visiting Faculty

The Schusterman Center hosts visiting faculty, who hold appointments in various departments across the university.

Yehudah Mirsky, NEJS (2012-2015)

Yehudah Mirsky is associate professor of the practice of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies at Brandeis. He studied at Yeshivat Har Etzion and Yeshiva College and received rabbinic ordination in Jerusalem. He graduated from Yale Law School, where he was an editor of the law review, and completed his PhD in Religion at Harvard. He worked in Washington as an aide to then-Senators Bob Kerrey and Al Gore, and at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, and served in the Clinton Administration as special advisor in the US State Department's human rights bureau. He has written widely on politics, theology and culture for a number of publications including The New Republic and The Economist, and is on the editorial board of Eretz Acheret. After the attacks of September 11 he served as a volunteer chaplain for the Red Cross. He is currently a member of the board of Yerushalmim, the movement for a pluralist and livable Jerusalem. His biography, Rav Kook: Mystic in a Time of Revolution was published in 2014 by Yale University Press. At Brandeis he teaches courses on the nexus of religion, state and society in Israel.

Tuvia Friling, NEJS 2013-2014

Friling is a senior researcher and former head of the Ben-Gurion Research Institute, at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. He was the State Archivist of Israel from 2001-2004 and has held visiting research positions at Oxford University, the University of Maryland and the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington DC, amongst others. Currently Friling serves as head of the Ben-Gurion Institute Press. He has published dozens of articles in Israel and abroad on his fields of expertise: Zionist movement policy; Ben-Gurion’s leadership; The Yishuv and the Holocaust; The Revisionist movement – the right wing movements in the Yishuv and their connection to aid and rescue during the Holocaust. His monograph “The Story of a Capo in Auschwitz: History, Memory and Politics” is being published in 2014 as part of the Schusterman Series in Israel Studies. At Brandeis he is Visiting Professor in the Schusterman Center for Israel Studies and the Department of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies. He co-taught "Conflict and Controversies in Israeli History" with Professor Troen in the fall and offers "The Yishuv, the State of Israel and the Holocaust" in the spring semester.

Uri Bialer, History and NEJS (Fall 2011 and Spring 2014)

Bialer is emeritus professor of International Relations at the Hebrew University and Maurice B. Hexter Chair in International Relations – Middle Eastern Studies.  He is the former director of Yad Ben Zvi Institute for the Study of Eretz Israel, visiting fellow at St. Antony’s College Oxford, at the British Academy, at Harvard University, and visiting professor at the University of Chicago, at Monash University and at New York University. Publications include: Cross on the Star of David: The Christian World in Israel’s Foreign Policy 1948-67 (2005); Oil and the Arab-Israeli Conflict 1948-67 (1999); Between East and West: Israel's Foreign Policy Orientation 1948-56, Cambridge University Press (1990); and The Shadow of the Bomber: The Fear of Air Attack and British Politics 1932-1939 (1980). At Brandeis he is a Visiting Professor at the Schusterman Center for Israel Studies and the Department of History, teaching about Israeli foreign policy.

Michael Feige, Anthropology and NEJS (Fall 2011 - Spring 2012)

Dr. Feige is a sociologist and anthropologist that specializes in Israeli society, collective memory and political myth. He teaches at the Israel Studies program at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, where he gives the introductory course: 'Israeli Society: Sociological and anthropological aspects'. He is currently working with Prof. David Ohana on the commemoration of Ben-Gurion in Israel society. With Dr. Pnina Mutzafi-Haller he is co-editor of the academic journal 'Hagar: Studies in Culture, Politics, Identities'. At Brandeis he will teach a course on the politics of Israeli archaeology.

Sammy Smooha, Sociology (Fall 2010)

Sammy Smooha is professor of sociology and former dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Haifa, as well as former president of the Israeli Sociological Society. He spent the 2009-2010 academic year as a Senior Research Fellow at the United States Institute of Peace in Washington, D.C. and will be a visiting professor of Sociology at Brandeis for the fall 2010 semester. The Israel Prize laureate for Sociology in 2008, Smooha specializes in ethnic relations in the world and Israel. He has published widely on the internal divisions and conflicts in Israeli society, especially on the relations between Mizrahim and Ashkenazim and between Arab and Jewish citizens. His books include Israel: Pluralism and Conflict (1978); Arabs and Jews in Israel (1989, 1992); and The Fate of Ethnic Democracy in Post-Communist Europe (2005, co-editor). He is currently writing a book on how Israel treats its Arab minority compared to how Northern Ireland, Estonia, Slovakia and Macedonia treat their national minorities. At Brandeis he taught courses on Israeli society.

Maoz Azaryahu, Anthropology (Spring 2010)

Maoz Azaryahu is an associate professor in the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies at the University of Haifa. He has written extensively on urban landscapes, memory, and society, and has recently published Tel Aviv: Mythography of a City (2006). He has been a visiting professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder, Penn State University, and Lakehead University, Ontario, Canada. At Brandeis he taught a seminar on mythic Tel Aviv.

Yoram Bilu, Anthropology (Fall 2009)

Yoram Bilu holds a joint appointment at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in the Department of Psychology, where he is the Sylvia Bauman Professor, and in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology. A clinical psychologist turned anthropologist, he is interested in the interface of culture and psychology as reflected in mental health, folk-religion, and altered states of consciousness. He received the Bahat Prize for his book, The Saint Impresarios: Dreamers, Healers, and Holy Men in Israel’s Urban Periphery, Haifa University Press (2005). At Brandeis, he taught a seminar on the sanctification of space in contemporary Israel.

Benjamin Gidron, Heller School for Social Policy and Management & Hornstein Professional Jewish Leadership Program (2008-2009)

Benjamin Gidron is director of the Israeli Center for Third Sector Research and the School of Management at Ben Gurion University of the Negev. He teaches courses on human service organizations, non-profit organizations, and third sector organizations. He has recently won an award for Innovation in Third Sector research from Ben Gurion University. He is the author of many books and articles, including the recent Third Sector in Israel: Between Society and State (2004). Gidron received a BA from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, an MSW from the University of Pittsburg, and a PhD from the University of Maryland School of Social Work and Community Planning. At Brandeis, he taught courses on sustainable development and the third sector in society.