1492: Columbus, the Jews, and the Messiah in Spain

1492: Columbus, the Jews, and the Messiah in Spain:
Public lecture with Matt Goldish, 2017 Bender Scholar, at CU Boulder


The Program in Jewish Studies at the University of Colorado Boulder is pleased to welcome Professor Matt Goldish as the 2017 Annual Sondra and Howard Bender Visiting Scholar. Professor Goldish will be in residence March 15 – 16, 2017.

Professor Goldish’s public lecture, 1492: Columbus, the Jews, and the Messiah in Spain, will take place Thursday, March 16, 7:00-8:30 p.m. in Old Main Theater, 1600 Pleasant Street, on the CU Boulder campus. RSVPs are appreciated since space is limited. Please email CUJewishStudies@colorado.edu or call 303-492-7143.

In this public lecture, Professor Goldish will focus on three enormous events that occurred in Spain during 1492: the end of the centuries-long war to stop Muslim rule in the Iberian Peninsula; the voyage of Christopher Columbus; and the expulsion of the Jews. These events are intimately connected, and their intersections run directly through Spanish expectations about the messiah. Is it possible that we did not learn everything there is to know about Columbus in school? Find out from a Columbus (Ohio) resident!

Dr. Matt Goldish

Matt Goldish is a Professor of History and Jewish Studies at Ohio State University and holds the Melton Chair in Jewish History. His research interests focus on the Western Sephardi Diaspora and the Portuguese conversos of Amsterdam, London, and Hamburg. His book, The Sabbatean Prophets, deals with the role of prophecy in the great messianic movement of Sabbatai Zevi, which swept the Jewish world in 1665-1666. Additionally, he works on the seventeenth century, and his monograph, Judaism in the Theology of Sir Isaac Newton, revolves around the impact of Jewish ideas and literature on European intellectuals at the dawn of the Enlightenment. He is also the author of Jewish Questions: Response on Sephardic Life in the Early Modern Period.

In addition to his public lecture, Professor Goldish will present a graduate student and faculty colloquium and serve as a guest lecturer in a Jewish Studies course.

Professor Goldish is the Program in Jewish Studies’ fifth annual Sondra and Howard Bender Visiting Scholar. His visit celebrates the Sondra and Howard Bender Visiting Scholars Endowed Fund, honoring the lives of Howard and Sondra Bender, devoted parents of four children and eleven grandchildren, including CU graduates. Active members of the community in Washington, D.C. and Bethesda, MD, Howard and Sondra served on multiple boards and held leadership positions in many non-profit organizations. They were extraordinary builders of buildings, Jewish life, and education, as well as passionate devotees of family and horse breeding. The Bender Foundation has generously endowed the Sondra and Howard Bender Visiting Scholars Fund to honor the lives of Sondra and Howard, who cherished Jewish culture, celebrated education, and lived life to the fullest.

About Meghan Perea

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