Colloquium to Focus on ‘Israel Under Netanyahu’

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pictured in a TV camera viewfinder. (MICHAL CIZEK/AFP/GettyImages)

Scholars from the around the globe are finalizing their plans to present research on the state of Israel under Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the 14th Lavy Colloquium, a periodic conference held at Johns Hopkins University.

The colloquium is dedicated to presenting research papers on various aspects of Jewish civilization, and each iteration is organized a different theme. Past themes have ranged from “Yiddish After the Catastrophe, 1934 to Present” to “Herem: The Sources, Practice and Representation of Ex-Communications and Bans in Rabbinic Culture.”

The colloquium hasn’t focused on Israel since 2010, but to Robert Freedman, this is the perfect time to return to the topic.

“Periodically, since Israel is very much part of the Jewish experience, we’ve got to look at modern Israel as part of the Lavy process,” Freedman said.

Freedman, who organized this year’s conference, is a distinguished scholar of American and Middle East foreign policy. Given that Netanyahu is set to pass David Ben-Gurion in terms of total time served as prime minister, Freedman said, “it’s time to assess his record.”

Netanyahu’s performance in matters of economics and foreign and domestic policy will be up for discussion by the 12 professors invited to this year’s colloquium.

The colloquium began in 2005 with a donation from Norman and Marion H. Lavy. Mr. Lavy, an alumnus of the university, died in 2009.

The colloquium will be held on Sunday, Oct. 7. It is free and open to the public, but reservations are required. For more information, visit

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