Jon D. Levenson

Jon D. Levenson

Albert A. List Professor of Jewish Studies (HDS)
Jon D. Levenson

AB, Harvard College
MA, PhD, Harvard University


Jon D. Levenson, Albert A. List Professor of Jewish Studies, began teaching at Harvard in 1988, having previously taught at the University of Chicago and at Wellesley College. His work concentrates on the interpretation of the Hebrew Bible, including its reinterpretations in the "rewritten Bible" of Second Temple Judaism and rabbinic midrash. He also teaches a seminar in the use of medieval Jewish commentaries for purposes of modern biblical exegesis. He has a strong interest in the philosophical and theological issues involved in biblical studies, especially the relationship of premodern modes of interpretation to modern historical criticism. Much of Professor Levenson's work centers on the relationship of Judaism and Christianity, both in antiquity and in modernity, and he has long been active in Jewish-Christian dialogue. His interests and courses in Jewish theology include the modern period. His book Resurrection and the Restoration of Israel: The Ultimate Victory of the God of Life (Yale University Press, 2006) won a National Jewish Book Award and the Biblical Archaeology Society Publication Award in the category of Best Book Relating to the Hebrew Bible published in 2005 or 2006. Together with Professor Kevin J. Madigan of HDS, Professor Levenson authored Resurrection: The Power of God for Christians and Jews (Yale University Press, 2008), which won Honorable Mention for the PROSE Award in Theology and Religious Studies, given by the Association of American Publishers. In 2013,Choice listed his book, Inheriting Abraham: The Legacy of the Patriarch in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam (Princeton University Press, 2012) as one of its Outstanding Academic Titles. His most recent volume is The Love of God: Divine Gift, Human Gratitude, and Mutual Faithfulness in Judaism (Princeton University Press, 2015). In 2015, the Algemeiner Journal listed him as one of “The Top 100 People Positively Influencing Jewish Life.” In all his work, Professor Levenson's emphasis falls on the close reading of texts for purposes of literary and theological understanding.


Professor Levenson is currently teaching.


Contact Information

Harvard Divinity School
45 Francis Avenue
Cambridge MA 02138

office hours: see Harvard Divinity School
p: 617-495-5955

Methodologies and Approaches