University of Pennsylvania

Steven P. Weitzman, Daniel E. Koshland Professor in Jewish Culture and Religion Dr. Steven Weitzman is the Abraham M. Ellis Professor of Hebrew and Semitic Languages and Literatures at the University of Pennsylvania and the Ella Darivoff Director of the Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies.

Weitzman is a Harvard-trained scholar of biblical and Jewish Studies who aims to bring new questions to the study of early Jewish culture and literature. His publications include literary studies of biblical texts, anthropologically-informed studies of the Dead Sea Scrolls and other ancient texts, a biography of King Solomon that traces the multi-faceted history of the famous king’s story from biblical times to the present, a co-authored a history of the Jews soon to appear in its third edition; and a special issue of the journal Human Biology devoted to promoting an interdisciplinary approach to the study of Jewish genetics. His most recent book is The Origin of the Jews, which received a National Jewish Book Award in 2017 for its exploration of what we know and don’t know from fields like history, archaeology and genetics about the origin and ancestry of the Jews.

Prior to coming to Penn in 2014, Weitzman served as director of two Jewish Studies programs: the Borns Jewish Studies Program at Indiana University and the Taube Center for Jewish Studies at Stanford.

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  • The Origin of the Jews: From Genesis to the New Genetics
  • Genealogical Bewilderment: Science and Skepticism in the Search for Jewish Ancestors
  • The Search for Solomon’s Mines: A Misadventure Story