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What do we know about American Jewry? A Conversation on the 2020 Pew Research Survey of Jewish Americans


Dr. Ilana Horwitz, Fields-Rayant Chair in Contemporary Jewish Life at Tulane University, will be joined by sociological and education experts Dr. Ari Y. Kelman of Stanford University, Dr. Leonard Saxe of Brandeis University, and Dr. Becka A. Alper of the Pew Research Center for a discussion of the results of the 2020 Pew Research survey of Jewish Americans.

More on the panelists:

Dr. Ilana Horwitz is the incoming assistant professor in the Fields-Rayant Chair in Contemporary Jewish Life at the Grant Center at Tulane University. She is currently the education postdoctoral fellow at the Stanford Center on Longevity. Her current book project, God, Grades, and Graduation: Religion's Surprising Impact on Academic Success (Forthcoming with Oxford University Press), examines how adolescents' religious commitments shape their educational journeys.

Dr. Ari Y. Kelman is the Jim Joseph Professor of Education and Jewish Studies, and Director of the Education and Jewish Studies concentration at the Stanford Graduate School of Education. Professor Kelman's research focuses on the forms and practices of religious knowledge transmission. He holds a specific research interest in American Jewry. He is the author of Shout to the Lord: Making Worship Music in Evangelical America (NYU 2018) and Station Identification: A Cultural History of Yiddish Radio (California, 2009). He is also the co-editor (with Jon Levisohn) of Beyond Jewish Identity (2019: Academic Studies Press), the editor of Is Diss a System?: A Milt Gross Comic Reader (NYU, 2010), co-author of Sacred Strategies: Transforming Synagogues from Functional to Visionary (Alban Institute, 2011).

Dr. Leonard Saxe is Klutznick Professor of Contemporary Jewish Studies at Brandeis University where he directs the Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies and the Steinhardt Social Research Institute. He is a social psychologist and his current work focuses on the socio-demography of American Jewry, research on Jewish identity, and study of on issues of concern to the Jewish community including antisemitism, engagement with Israel, and the relationship of Jews to other religious and ethnic groups. Recently, he co-led a program of research on the impact of COVID-19 on the Jewish community. He is an author/co-author of nearly 400 publications, including books about Jewish summer camping and Birthright Israel. Prior to his focus on religion and the Jewish community, he led several major research programs on mental health issues and substance abuse. He has been a Science Fellow for the United States Congress and a Fulbright Professor at Haifa University, Israel. In 1989, he received the American Psychological Association’s award for Distinguished Contributions to Psychology in the Public Interest (early career). In 2012, he received the Association for the Scientific Study of Jewry’s Sklare Award, for his career contributions to the understanding of Jewish life.

Dr. Becka A. Alper is a senior researcher at Pew Research Center. She contributes to the Center’s domestic religion polls and is an expert on the views and demographic profile of U.S. Jews. Alper is an author of Pew Research Center reports such as “America’s Changing Religious Landscape,” “A Portrait of American Orthodox Jews,” "The Religious Typology," "What Americans Know about Religion," and "What Americans Know about the Holocaust." Before joining the Center, she was a postdoctoral research associate working on the Youth Activism Project at the University of Arizona. Alper received doctorate and master’s degrees in sociology from Purdue University.

Stuart and Suzanne Grant Center for the American Jewish Experience

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