Jewish Approaches to Contemporary Social Issues

This course explores how Jewish sources can help inform our understanding of contemporary social issues by looking at biblical, rabbinic, medieval, and modern denominational views on such issues as: What are the Jewish views on war and peace?  What is the proper balance between the needs of the individual and the society in which we live? What does it mean to live in an interdependent society? What are the ideal characteristics and responsibilities of leaders? What are the most important actions that ordinary human beings can undertake? What is the Jewish approach to toleration of differences, recognition of minority viewpoints, and the conduct of respectful disagreement? What are the Jewish approaches to environmentalism, sustainability, diversity, and inclusion?

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