Back to course catalogue

The Politics of Purim:
The Story You Never Knew

The events of Purim, famously chronicled in Megillat Esther with familiar heroes like Mordechai and Esther and villains like Haman (and, possibly, Achashverosh), tell two distinct but related tales: We encounter a story of the potential annihilation of the Jewish people and a redemptive turn of events; we are also given a powerful primer for political wisdom, intrigue, and statesmanship. This parent-child seminar will examine the political teachings of Megillat Esther, with an eye towards questions of Jewish survival in exile, the ideal form(s) of government, the arts of political leadership and statecraft, and the very significance of political effort and activity. By the time our seminar is complete, we hope to have developed a much deeper understanding of the relationship between the simple, surface reading of the Megillah and the underlying concepts and teachings of this earthy and human-focused holiday.

In this class, parents and their children will study togetherexploring critical texts on Jewish thought, history, and traditionsand create a shared language that allows for a rich learning experience.

Student applicants for this class will be asked to identify their adult learning partner during the application process. Students may elect to learn with a parent, grandparent, mentor or another important person in their lives.

Generously supported by Diane Troderman