Temple UniversityRebecca T. Alpert

Rebecca T. Alpert is Professor of Religion and Senior Associate Dean in the College of Liberal Arts at Temple University. She attended Barnard College before receiving her Ph.D. in religion at Temple University and her rabbinical training at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in Wyncote, Pennsylvania. After spending the early part of her career in academic administration, Alpert joined the faculty at Temple University in 1997 in the department of Religion and the Women’s Studies program. She is the co-author of Exploring Judaism: A Reconstructionist Approach, author of Like Bread on the Seder Plate: Jewish Lesbians and the Transformation of Tradition and Whose Torah? A Concise Guide to Progressive Judaism. Her recent scholarship examines religion and sports. Out of Left Field: Jews and Black Baseball, was published by Oxford University Press in June 2011. Religion and Sport: An Introduction and Case Studies, was published by Columbia University Press in 2015. She is currently co-editing an anthology, Gods, Games, and Globalization (with Arthur Remillard) to be published by Mercer University Press in 2019. Alpert received the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Teaching Award (2013) and Temple University’s highest honor, the Great Teacher Award (2016).


  • Jews and Black Baseball
    Jews played significant roles in the Negro Leagues as owners, journalists, and even players. This talk, based on my book Out of Left Field: Jews in Black Baseball, will explain what it meant for Jews to have contributed to that historic institution.
  • Jews and Sports
    Although often called “the people of the book” Jews have also played pivotal roles in sports history. This talk will tell the story behind the stereotype of Jewish antipathy toward sports and physicality. We will also discuss the historic contributions Jews have made to sports internationally.