David M. Stern

[image of Prof. Stern]
Moritz and Josephine Berg Professor of Classical Hebrew Literature
Contact Information
Office Address: 
710 Williams Hall
Email Address: 

Ph.D., 1980, Harvard University
B.A., 1972, Columbia College

Research and Teaching Interests: 
  • classical Jewish literature and religion
  • the history of the Jewish book
Selected Publications: 

Parables in Midrash: Narrative and Exegesis in Rabbinic Literature (Harvard University Press).

Rabbinic Fantasies: Imaginative Narratives from Classical Hebrew Literature (Yale University Press).

Midrash and Theory: Ancient Jewish Exegesis and Contemporary Literary Studies (Northwestern University Press).

His essays and reviews on modern Jewish literature and culture have appeared in The New Republic, Commentary, The New York Times Book Review and Tikkun. He was also a founding editor of Prooftexts: A Journal of Jewish Literary History.

Work in Progress: 

He is currently working on a book entitled The Jewish Library: Four Jewish Classics and the Jewish Experience, which traces the history of the physical forms of the Talmud, the Rabbinic Bible, the Prayerbook, and the Passover Haggadah, and the ways in which those forms have shaped the meaning and significance of these classic Jewish books.

Recent Courses: 

NELC 252: Themes in Jewish Tradition
NELC 156: Great Books of Judaism
HEBR 257: Studies in Rabbinic Literature
HEBR 258: Studies in Medieval Hebrew Literature
HEBR 357: Classical Midrash & Aggadah
HEBR 358: Siddur and Piyyut
NELC 356: Ancient Interpretation of the Bible