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Unit of study_

JCTC3602: Contemporary Jewish Identities

Contemporary Jewish identity is commonly refracted through the prism of two seminal historical events: the Holocaust, and the establishment of the State of Israel. However, at the dawn of the 21st century, closer examination reveals that Jewish identity is today an increasingly diverse and ever changing entity. This unit will probe and explore the reasons for this heterogeneity, identifying and interrogating the intersections between the religious, cultural and political currents shaping today's Jewish identities in diverse communal and state settings.


Academic unit Hebrew, Biblical and Jewish Studies
Unit code JCTC3602
Unit name Contemporary Jewish Identities
Session, year
Semester 1, 2021
Attendance mode Normal day
Location Remote
Credit points 6

Enrolment rules

12 credit points at 2000 level in Jewish Civilisation, Thought and Culture or European Studies or History or Government or Modern Hebrew or Biblical Studies and Classical Hebrew
Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff and contact details

Coordinator Avril Alba,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Participation Participation
10% - n/a
Outcomes assessed: LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO1
Assignment Research proposal/annotated bibliography
Short answer/essay
25% Week 05
Due date: 31 Mar 2021 at 23:00

Closing date: 10 Apr 2021
1,000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO1
Assignment Research essay
Long answer/essay
50% Week 11
Due date: 19 May 2021 at 23:00

Closing date: 29 May 2021
3,000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO1
Assignment Discussion board activity
Short answer
15% Week 13
Due date: 02 Jun 2021 at 23:00

Closing date: 02 Jun 2021
500 words (2X250-word discussion posts)
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6

Detailed information for each assessment can be found in the document entitled ‘Assessments’ in the ‘Administration’ module on the Canvas site for this unit.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a High distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a Distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range


High distinction

85 - 100



75 - 84



65 - 74



50 - 64



0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

For more information see

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

Special consideration

If you experience short-term circumstances beyond your control, such as illness, injury or misadventure or if you have essential commitments which impact your preparation or performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 Introductory lecture Lecture (2 hr)  
Week 02 The Religious Landscape: Judaism or Judaisms? Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 03 Lines of commonality, lines of division: ethnicity and cultural pluralism Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 04 Post Holocaust Jewish identities Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 05 Post Holocaust German Jewish identities Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 06 Contemporary American Jewish identities Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 07 Israeli and Jewish identities Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 08 Jewcy Jews: Jewish ‘Pop’ culture today Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 09 Contemporary North African Jewish identities Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 10 Contemporary Egyptian Jewish identities Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 11 Contemporary South African Jewish identities Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 12 Contemporary Australian Jewish identities Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 13 Gen 17 Australia and summary and discussion Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  

Attendance and class requirements

  • Attendance: According to Faculty Board Resolutions, students in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences are expected to attend 90% of their classes. If you attend less than 50% of classes, regardless of the reasons, you may be referred to the Examiner’s Board. The Examiner’s Board will decide whether you should pass or fail the unit of study if your attendance falls below this threshold.
  • Lecture recording: Most lectures (in recording-equipped venues) will be recorded and may be made available to students on the LMS. However, you should not rely on lecture recording to substitute your classroom learning experience.
  • Preparation: Students should commit to spend approximately three hours’ preparation time (reading, studying, homework, essays, etc.) for every hour of scheduled instruction.

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Required readings

All required readings for this unit are located in eReserve on the Canvas site for this unit, in addition to readings, which have been placed in the weekly modules. Please ensure you check both locations and have read all ‘Required Reading’ from the Reading List on Canvas and all readings from the weekly Canvas module. It is an expectation that this will be completed prior to each weekly lecture and tutorial – as tutorials will be based on disucssion of both the lecture and reading material and key questions surrounding both.

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University’s graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. demonstrate an advanced understanding of the complexity of Jewish identities in diverse contemporary contexts
  • LO2. explain the significance of religious, political and cultural factors with regard to contemporary Jewish identities
  • LO3. identify central themes in current scholarly debates pertaining to contemporary Jewish life
  • LO4. critically evaluate ongoing debates about the relationship between religious and political power in contemporary Jewish communities
  • LO5. identify and understand the role of variables such as gender, sexual orientation, religious affiliation and collective identity in the development of contemporary Jewish identities and communities
  • LO6. analyze the intersection between Jewish and non-Jewish identities communities in relation to the broad, overarching themes and concerns of the unit.

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities
No changes have been made since this unit was last offered


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