Association for Jewish StudiesWarren Hoffman

Warren Hoffman is the Executive Director of the Association for Jewish Studies. Previously, he was the Associate Director of the Center of Jewish Life and Learning at Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, and he also served over five years as the Senior Director of Programming at the Gershman Y where he innovated numerous new programs and was named the “next wave” of Jewish culture by the Jewish Exponent. In the world of theater, Warren was the literary manager and dramaturg for Philadelphia Theatre Company where he researched and developed multiple world premieres by writers including Terrence McNally, Chris Durang, and Bill Irwin. In New York, Hoffman was the Associate Artistic Director of Jewish Repertory Theatre and was a writer and reviewer for TalkinBroadway.com where he covered the Off-Broadway and cabaret scene. In addition to working in the theater community, Hoffman holds a Ph.D. in American Literature from the University of California-Santa Cruz. He earned rave reviews for his book The Passing Game: Queering Jewish American Culture published by Syracuse University Press. His most recent book is The Great White Way: Race and the Broadway Musical. Warren is also a playwright and his most recent play The Black Slot was produced in Chicago in 2016.

Lectures:

  • Jews, Whiteness, and the Broadway Musical
    Jewish Americans served as the main creators behind the growth of the Broadway musical in the U.S., but what does the Broadway musical have to say about issues of race, especially the racial identities of its Jewish creators? In this talk, we’ll look at four musicals: Show Boat, Oklahoma!, Annie Get Your Gun, and West Side Story to see how the musical art form engaged with the concept of race in different time periods, looking particularly at the question of “white racial identity” and the ways in which musicals themselves helped Jews assimilate into the white mainstream.
  • Queer Jewish American Culture Before Stonewall
    In this program, we’ll go on an interactive journey via theater, film, short story, and novel to look at the ways in which Judaism and LGBTQ sexualities intersected, in Yiddish and English, in America before the 1969 Stonewall Riots.