Swarthmore Professor Named 2006
Nathaniel Deutsch, associate professor of religion at Swarthmore College, has been named a 2006 Guggenheim Fellow. One of the most prestigious fellowships in the arts and sciences, the Guggenheim will support Deutsch's work on his book about the famed Jewish ethnographer S. Ansky.
Deutsch is one of 187 artists, scholars, and scientists selected by the Guggenheim Foundation for this year's awards from a pool of almost 3,000 applicants. The fellowships are awarded to applicants who have exceptional records of past achievement and are taking their work in especially promising future directions.
Deutsch will use his Guggenheim to continue his research and writing on the nature and ongoing transformation of modern Jewish culture, as well as the relationships between orality and literacy, and ethnography and history. He is currently working on a book titled The People's Torah: Ansky and the Invention of Jewish Ethnography.
A specialist in Judaism, Gnosticism, and early Christianity, Deutsch has taught in the Department of Religion at Swarthmore since 1995 and is the chair of the Humanities Division of the College and the Program in Interpretation Theory. He is the author of The Maiden of Ludmir: A Jewish Holy Woman and Her World (2003), Guardians of the Gate: Angelic Vice Regency in Late Antiquity (1999), The Gnostic Imagination: Gnosticism, Mandaeism, and Merkabah Mysticism (1995) and coeditor, with Associate Professor of Religion Yvonne Chireau, of Black Zion: African American Religious Encounters with Judaism (2000). He is also the co-founder of the Beit Midrash Center for the Study of Classical Jewish Texts at Swarthmore.