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PopUp Exhibition | Zachary Bleemer with Aiko Gonzalez and Clayton Hale (URAP) on The Passover Haggadah: Digital Perspectives

Nov 2, 2016 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

How do Jewish communities in the global diaspora transform the Passover Haggadah to meet their local needs (visually, symbolically, and textually), and what information do these transformations provide about the common beliefs held by each community?

In order to answer these questions, Zachary Bleemer, a Graduate Student in Economics has been collaborating with the Digital Humanities-focused Undergraduate Research Apprentice Program (URAP) of The Magnes. Together with a team of undergraduate students, he digitized and textually organized 30 different editions of the Passover Haggadah from The Magnes Collection, published in the United States between 1840 and 2015. The Haggadah, read at the Passover Seder, represents the manifestation of a local Jewish community’s spiritual and communal practice. The digital copies created by the research team can be used to display substantial changes in visual content, as well in text choices, including the words used to translate the Hebrew and Aramaic of the original text into English, and across time and place. The presentation, which will include both original volumes and their digital counterparts, will center on a new Digital Humanities method that aims at quantifying and explicating a community’s beliefs through the analysis of text patterns.

Each week, UC Berkeley faculty and graduate students, visiting artists and other notable guests will present brief lectures focused on selected treasures from the The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life. One speaker and one object at the time, these “flash” exhibitions will include the opportunity to view the art and artifacts discussed intimately and up close.

Bring your own lunch, enjoy complimentary refreshments, and take part in an exciting learning program, free and open to the public. Close-up view of collections included.

The Magnes Auditorium

2121 Allston Way, Wednesdays Noon-1 pm

Presentation begin promptly at 12:15 pm


September 21; October 19, 26; November 2, 9, 16, 30

No lecture on November 23 (Thanksgiving).

Check The Magnescalendarand Facebook pagefor updates.



Nov 2, 2016
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Program Category:


The Magnes Collection of Jewish Life and Art
2121 Allston Way
Berkeley, CA 94720 United States
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