Tel Aviv Diary

On June 20 students worked on their final digital humanities projects–to be published here soon–and in the afternoon the group visited the ANU Museum of the Jewish People (formerly Beit Hatfutsot/The Diaspora Museum) on the campus of Tel Aviv University. The ANU Museum only fully reopened in the spring of 2021 after undergoing a continual decade long $100 million reconstruction. For the students’ old professor, Gene Simmons and Leonard Cohen’s guitars were highlights (Simmons donated the guitar from his final performance, and signed it “Rock on, Chaim [his name in Hebrew].” The students enjoyed the Seinfeld exhibit, despite too few of them having seen the show! The collection also includes many interactive exhibits and artifacts from Jewish ritual, cultural, and daily life.

The day wrapped up with class on the beach with Dr. Moshe Shashar, head of the nephrology and dialysis clinic at Laniado Hospital/Sanz Medical Center in Netanya, a hospital founded by Rabbi Yekusiel Yehudah Halberstam, the Hasidic rabbi known as the Klausenberger Rebbe. Dr. Shashar talked about the challenges and many interesting aspects of delivering health care in a government-funded hospital with a diverse patient population and staff, that sees itself as a religious institution. Earlier in the day, Dr. Shashar had brought two students with him to work in the morning, as one is doing their digital humanities project on the hospital.

Above: Items from the ANU Museum of the Jewish People.

Below: Laniado Hospital and class on the beach.

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