July 19, 2024
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Rabbi Dr. Kanarfogel Appointed to UNESCO Advisory Board

New York—Professor Ephraim Kanarfogel, the E. Billi Ivry University Professor of Jewish History, Literature and Law at Yeshiva University, has been appointed to an international academic advisory board that will advise the Rhineland region in Germany about designating the Jewish communities of Speyer, Worms and Mainz as a World Heritage site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization World Heritage Center.

The advisory board will document the creativity and cultural heritage of medieval Ashkenaz through their monuments, documents and existing culture.

Kanarfogel, described by the Prime Minister of Rheinland-Pfalz as “the leading authority in the world today on Jewish intellectual history during the High Middle Ages,” will join other important academics from Europe and Israel in this project. He has already had an initial meeting with his colleagues and is slated to participate in related academic conferences and events in both Europe and Israel.

“This is a striking and well-deserved tribute to Professor Kanarfogel’s stellar contribution to the study of medieval Ashkenazic rabbinic culture and a demonstration of the exceptional quality of YU’s faculty and offerings in Jewish studies at both the undergraduate and graduate levels,” said Dr. David Berger, the Ruth and I. Lewis Gordon Professor of Jewish History and dean of YU’s Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies.

For his part, Kanarfogel had a simple take on his prestigious appointment. “The main beneficiaries of this extraordinary designation will be the Jewish communities of Mainz, Worms and Speyer and their members, which makes my participation a mitzvah and enhances YU’s already outstanding reputation in Jewish studies in the process.”

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