Scholars

Each year the Institute hosts approximately 40 academics as members of Research Groups. These scholars constitute the vanguard in their various disciplines, coming from a wide range of fields and diverse backgrounds, from Israel and abroad. Free of their normal teaching obligations and administrative duties, their collaborative research at the IIAS enables them to engage in joint research projects. With their fellowship at the Institute as the launching-pad for long-term interaction, the Institute contributes to the interchange of knowledge and the vitality of academic life in Israel and throughout the world.

View the 2022-2023 Directory here

 

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Nir Avieli

FELLOW
Ben-Gurion University
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Prof. Nir Avieli is a cultural anthropologist. Avieli has been conducting ethnographic research in Vietnam since the late 1990’s, focusing on food and foodways. Within the research group he will expand the scope of his research on animals in contemporary Vietnamese society in several directions. He will further explore the social categorization of the edible and inedible in Vietnam and the social and cultural contexts that allow and even enhance transgression of prohibitions and taboos relating to animal meat, emphasizing the role played by age and gender in such processes and contexts. He will study the changing cultural meanings and social positions of water buffaloes, a central pillar of traditional Vietnamese farming and farming society, vis-a-vis agricultural modernization. He will explore the changing trends regarding animals in the domestic sphere in contemporary Vietnam and the shift from “decorative animals” (such golden fish and songbirds) to pets, mainly dogs and cats. He will also investigate continuity and change in rituals that involve dragons and unicorns, mythical animals that materialize in various ways in contemporary ritual.

 

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chloi balla

Chloe Balla

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University of Crete
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Prof. Chloe Balla is Associate Professor and the Director of the Laboratory of Philosophical Research and Translation at the University of Crete. She is a Plato scholar with a special interest in Plato’s criticism of the sophists and his representation of Socrates, and is currently working on a monograph of Plato’s Phaedo (working title: Only reason left alive: Plato’s Phaedo as an exhortation to philosophy). 

Read more about Professor Balla here.

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Michal Barzuza

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University of Virginia
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Professor Michal Barzuza researches and teaches corporate law, corporate governance, corporate finance, regulatory competition and law and economics. Her scholarship studies the optimal balance between regulation and laissez-faire in corporate law, focusing on issues such as the effects of interstate competition on the shape of corporate law, firm heterogeneity and the choice of corporate governance terms, cross-listing, boardroom dynamics, outside directors and the general counsel, and firms with controlling shareholders.

Read more about Prof. Michal Barzuza here.

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david bello

David Bello

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Washington and Lee University
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Prof. Bello's research focuses on the Qing Empire as a Human-Animal Construct. The Qing dynasty (1644-1912) governed a variety of ecologies and cultures across East Asia, Inner Asia and Southeast Asia. This required Qing environmental orchestration of human relations with livestock and game in Inner Asia, with insect herbivore predators and agricultural domesticates in East Asia and with insect disease vectors in Southeast Asia, to name only the major categories.

Read more about Prof. Bello here.

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Olga Chernyakhovskaya

Olga Chernyakhovskaya

FELLOW
Otto-Friedrich Universität Bamberg
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Dr. Olga Chernyakhovskaya is a recent PhD recipient and has already established a name for herself as a leading researcher of Socratic literature. Her book "Socrates bei Xenophon" offers a comprehensive philological and philosophical analysis of Xenophon's Socratic writings. In addition to the book, she has written numerous articles on various aspects of Socratic philosophy. She comes to Xenophon with a strong background in Platonic and Aristotelian philosophy, which is a rarity among contemporary scholars.

Read more about Professor Chernyakhovskaya here.

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Gabriel Danzig

Gabriel Danzig

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Bar-Ilan University
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Prof. Gabriel Danzig is Associate Professor in the Department of Classical Studies at Bar Ilan University. Gabriel has published on Plato and Aristotle's political and ethical thought, and numerous articles on different aspects of Xenophon's writing and thought. His recent articles have placed a special emphasis on the comparative study of Xenophon's ethical and political concepts. Together with Dave Johnson and Don Morrison, he edited a collection of essays from an international conference held in Israel, the first collection we know of on the comparative study of Plato and Xenophon. This project is a natural extension of his previous research.

Read more about Professor Danzig here.

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Yuval Feldman

Yuval Feldman

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Bar-Ilan University
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Yuval Feldman is The Mori Lazarof professor of legal research at Bar-Ilan University Faculty of Law. He obtained his Ph.D. ( Jurisprudence and Social Policy) from the UC Berkeley in 2004 after receiving his L.L.B. and B.A (Psychology) from Bar-Ilan University.

He teaches Employment Law, Law and Psychology, Law and Behavioral Economics and Empirical Legal Methods. His areas of research include Behavioral Analysis of Law, Experimental Law and Economics, Ethical Decision-Making, Regulatory Impact and Social Norms, Compliance, Formal and Non-Formal Enforcement Strategies.

Read more about Prof. Yuval Feldman here.

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Noa Grass

FELLOW
Independent Scholar
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Noa Grass is working on the horse administration of Ming China. She has recently completed an article on frontier horse ranches in the early decades of the dynasty. During the time at the institute of advanced studies, she plans to work on temples to the horse god that were constructed near ranches both on the border and inland. Built and maintained by local official or military units, these temples were visited regularly by chief military officers that visited periodically to preside over rituals, and provided lodgings for officials that came to inspect the horses. They therefore served as a meeting point between local social and national administrative elements of the horse administration.

Read more about Noa Grass here.

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david johnson

David Johnson

FELLOW
Southern Illinois University at Carbondale
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David Johnson is a leading expert in Xenophon's Socratic and non-Socratic writings. He is the author of numerous articles on central issues in this field, and is the co-editor with Gabriel Danzig and Donald Morrison of Plato and Xenophon: Comparative Studies. He is one of the chief instigators of the revival in the study of Xenophon's Socratic writings, and brings a vast knowledge of Xenophon and all the literature surrounding him, both in the fourth century and in modern scholarship.

 

 

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Konstan David

David Konstan

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New York University

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Prof. David Konstan's research focuses on ancient Greek and Latin literature, especially comedy and the novel, and classical philosophy. In recent years, he has investigated the emotions and value concepts of classical Greece and Rome, and has written books on friendship, pity, the emotions, forgiveness, and beauty. He has also written on ancient physics and atomic theory and on literary theory, and has translated Seneca’s two tragedies about Hercules into verse. He is currently working on a book on ancient vs. modern conceptions of loyalty, gratitude, love, and grief.

Read more about Professor Konstan here.

 

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Alexander Kulik

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Hebrew University of Jerusalem
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Professor Alexander Kulik's research interests encompass several fields in the humanities. Kulik is an expert on the transmission of texts and ideas from the ancient through the medieval period, with a special interest in the adaptation of Greek concepts in the Judeo-Christian tradition. His linguistic background and experience in tradition criticism, combined with his interest in ancient Judeo-Greek thought, will provide a valuable perspective to our discussion of the history of concepts.

Read more about Professor Kulik here.

 

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jianxiong ma

Jianxiong Ma

FELLOW
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
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Prof. Ma Jianxiong is a specialist in the history and anthropology of Southwest China, especially the borderlands between China and Myanmar. As part of the research group he will work on the mule caravans that acted as the transportation links that integrated the mountainous zones of subtropical Southwest China, tropical Southeast Asia and highland Eastern Tibet. This transportation system provided a multi-layer social and physical networks of political, social and economic exchanges and mobility. A fundamental part of this network were the human-animal relationships.

 

Read more about Prof. Ma Jianxiong here.

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Marchina Charlotte

Charlotte Marchina

FELLOW
INALCO
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Charlotte Marchina is an anthropologist and Associate Professor in Mongolian Language and Culture at INALCO (National Institute for Oriental Languages and Civilizations), Paris. After graduating in both Mongolian and Russian Studies, Charlotte Marchina obtained her PhD in anthropology. Her doctoral research focused on human-animal coexistence, communication and collaboration in nomadic pastoralism among the Mongols of Mongolia and Southern Siberia.

Read more about Dr Charlotte Marchina here.

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Maria Mavroudi

Maria Mavroudi

FELLOW
University of California
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Read more about Professor Maria Mavroudi here.
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Ewout Meijer

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Maastricht University
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Ewout Meijer has been active in forensic psychological research for 15 years. He obtained his PhD in 2008 from the Faculty of Psychology, Maastricht University, and has published about a variety of topics, including deception detection and investigative interviewing. He served as a research fellow at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 2011-2012, and chaired the Forensic Psychology section at Maastricht University in 2015-2017.
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Hien Minh Ngo

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University of Da Nang
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Prof. Ngo Minh Hien focuses on the manifestations of nature and nature symbolism in modern (mostly 20th century) Vietnamese literature. While working with the research group, she will explore human-animal relations in late colonial, Socialist and post-revolutionary Vietnamese literature and follow the changes and developments in these relations in different political and social contexts. Specifically, Hien will engage with domestic animals: water buffaloes, pigs, chicken, ducks, dogs and cats. These animals were, and still are, essential components of Vietnamese rural system, food culture, myth and religion.

 

 

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James Redfield

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University of Chicago
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Prof. James Redfield is the Emeritus Edward Olson Distinguished Service Professor of Classics at the University of Chicago. James is best known for his seminal work on Homer, Nature and Culture in the Iliad, which offered an anthropological perspective on Homeric society and values, and on the role of poetry and literature within it. Together with his studies of society and values in the later Greek world, this research provides invaluable points of reference for philosophical theories, especially of the Socratic circle. For the past fifteen years, James has been focusing his research on the Greek philosophers in the Socratic circle, and has written several articles on the subject.

Read more about Professor James Redfield here.

 

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Gregor Schwarb

Gregor Schwarb

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SOAS University of London
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Read more about Professor Gregor Schwarb here.
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meir shahar

Meir Shahar

FELLOW
Tel Aviv University
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Prof. Shahar Meir is a historian of Chinese religion. He intends to focus upon the representations, roles, and attitudes towards animals in the Chinese religious tradition. Meir intends to pay special attention to the tutelary deities of draft animals, such as the Horse King (which protects horses, donkeys, and mules), the Ox King (which protects oxen and water buffaloes), and the Silkworm Goddess (which protects silkworms). These deities are widely worshiped by people whose livelihood depends upon their beastly protégés. Furthermore, human and animal tutelary deities are often worshiped side by side, indicating an existential affinity between draft animals and their human masters. Human and non-human animals are equally vulnerable and similarly in need of divine protection.

Read more about Prof. Shahar here.

 

 

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Gideon Shelach-Lavi

Gideon Shelach-Lavi

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Hebrew University of Jerusalem
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Prof. Shelach-Lavi is an archaeologist who specialized in the Neolithic and Bronze Age of North China. His project will focus on the process of animal domestication in north China and how this fundamental process shaped the nature of human-animal relations. On one level, this research addresses the interdependency that was forged between humans and animals in this region. On another level, through the examination of the depiction of animals in prehistoric art, the treatment of animals in ritualistic contexts, and in written sources (such as the Oracle Bones documents) it will also address the formation of animal categorization by human and the powers and supernatural traits attributed to animals by different societies in North China during the Neolithic and Bronze Age (c. 6000-500 BCE). The work of Prof. Shelach-Lavi will contribute to our group by broadening our chronological scope to include the prehistoric and protohistoric periods, and by addressing the formative period in the development of animal-human relations in the Sinitic world.

 

Read more about Prof. Shelach-Lavi here.

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Ofer Gal

FELLOW
University of Sydney
Ofer Gal is a professor in the School of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Sydney.
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Ian Hardy

FELLOW
University of Helsinki
Ian Hardy is the Professor of Agricultural Entomology in the Department of Agricultural Sciences at the University of Helsinki.
Maria Kravchyk

Maria Kravchyk

INDIVIDUAL FELLOW
University of Odessa
Maria Kravchyk was an associate professor in the field of philosophy and culture at the International Humanitarian University in Odessa, and is currently in …
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Asaf Sadeh

FELLOW
Newe Ya'ar Research Center, ARO
Asaf Sadeh is a senior researcher in the Department of Natural Resources at Newe Ya'ar Research Center.
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Avishalom Tor

INDIVIDUAL FELLOW
University of Notre Dame

Professor Avishalom Tor is a Professor of Law and Director of the Research Program on Law and Market Behavior at Notre Dame Law School.

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Deborah Tor

FELLOW
University of Notre Dame
Deborah Tor is an Associate Professor in the Department of History at the University of Notre Dame. Her research interest is medieval Islamic history.
Marc Brettler

Marc Brettler

INDIVIDUAL FELLOW
Duke University
Marc Brettler is the Bernice and Morton Lerner Professor of Judaic Studies at Duke University, and Dora Golding Professor of Biblical Studies emeritus at …
Edward Breuer

Edward Breuer

INDIVIDUAL FELLOW
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Prof. Edward Breuer is a native of Montreal Canada and received his Ph.D. from Harvard; he currently teaches at the Hebrew University.
Ronit Kessel

Ronit Kessel

INDIVIDUAL FELLOW
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
The combination of experimental petrology and thermodynamic modeling provides powerful insights into the igneous and metamorphic processes by which Earth and …