Oxford Jewish Thought

Lectures, essays, questions & articles

by Rabbi Eli Brackman

Biographical History of Jews of Oxford from the Medieval Period to the Modern Era


The recorded history of Jews of Oxford dates back to the Norman Conquest in 1066. In the Domesday book of 1086, the only Jew living in England is recorded as living in Oxfordshire. Subsequently, Oxford, as a seat of learning and academia, has been intimately connected to the history of the Jews of England from the medieval period until the modern era.

The following work is the first comprehensive biographical sketch of past Oxford Jewish personalities, who lived or visited Oxford, from the medieval period until today. It consists of around a hundred and seventy five people, including distinguished academics, great rabbis of the medieval period, leading financiers, as well as local residents, who played an important part in the… Read More »

Heidegger and Nazism - M.J. Inwood

I should begin by saying that Heidegger’s Nazism would be of little interest if he weren’t a significant philosopher. As a nazi he was very small fry. But his reputation as a philosopher is such that his supporters want to exonerate him and, at the very least dissociate his philosophy from his political behaviour, while his opponents are happy to say ‘We told you so, didn’t we?’ Nevertheless, I will mainly talk about his life, turning to his philosophy only when it seems relevant to his politics. He was born of poor Catholic peasants in Messkirch, a small town in the Black Forest, and because of his brilliance was educated by the Church with a view to the priesthood. He was always deeply attached to the rugged … Read More »

Hebrew Manuscripts at Christ Church College, Oxford

Christ Church Library].JPGCollection of Hebrew Manucripts at Christ Church College Library, University of Oxford 


We are pleased to present over thirty unique Hebrew manuscripts from the library of Christ Church College, Univeristy of Oxford, compiled, edited and presented by Rabbi Eli Brackman from the Adolf Naeubauer Catalogue of the Hebrew Manuscripts in the Bodleian Library and College Libraries of Oxford 


1. MS. 196

14th century German born & Strasburg Rabbi Shmuel Schlettstadt’s compendium of the Jewish legal work ‘Mordechai’ written by Yehdah bar Yitzchak 1410;


2. MS. 199

a. Responsum dealing with the question of the status of a child born to secret Jews of Spain and Portugal and a Christian mother… Read More »

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