Associate Professor of International Studies
Theodore Sasson is Associate Professor of International Studies at Middlebury College, where he teaches Introduction to International Studies, Diasporas and Homelands, and Israel: State and Society. Professor Sasson is also Visiting Research Professor of Sociology at Brandeis University and Senior Research Scientist at the Steinhardt Social Research Institute and Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies, Brandeis University.
Author of several books and articles in the fields of political sociology and criminology, Professor Sasson’s current work examines Israeli political culture and Israel-Diaspora relations. His recent articles include: “Framing Religious Conflict: Popular Israeli Discourse on Religion and State” (with Ephraim Tabory, Journal of Church and State, fall 2010); “Trends in American Jewish Attachment to Israel: an Assessment of the ‘Distancing’ Hypothesis (with Charles Kadushin and Leonard Saxe, Contemporary Jewry, fall 2010); “From Mass Mobilization to Direct Engagement: The Changing Relationship of American Jews to Israel” (Israel Studies, summer 2010); and “Converging Political Cultures: How Globalization is Shaping the Discourses of Israeli and American Jews” (with Ephraim Tabory, Nationalism and Ethnic Politics, winter 2010.
Professor Sasson serves as co-principal investigator of evaluation research for the educational program Taglit-Birthright Israel and as co-principal investigator for the Jewish Futures Project, a longitudinal study of Jewish young adults. He is Chair of the Association for Jewish Studies (AJS) division for social science, anthropology and folklore; Secretary of the Association for the Social Scientific Study of Jewry (ASSJ); and Board Member of the Association of Israel Studies (AIS).
Courses offered in the past four years.
▲ indicates offered in the current term
▹ indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]
INTL 0101 - Intro to Intl & Global Studies
Introduction to International and Global Studies
This is the core course of the International and Global Studies major. It is an introduction to key international issues and problems that will likely feature prominently in their courses at Middlebury and study abroad. Issues covered will differ from year to year, but they may include war, globalization, immigration, racism, imperialism, nationalism, world organizations, non-governmental organizations, the European Union, the rise of East Asia, politics and society in Latin America, and anti-Americanism. 3 hrs. lect./disc.
Fall 2009, Fall 2010, Fall 2011, Fall 2012
INTL 0343 / SOAN 0343 - Contemporary Israel
Contemporary Israel: State and Society
In this course we will examine Israeli society in a period of rapid and profound transformation. Following an introductory unit, our topics will include the rise and decline of Ashkenazi hegemony; recent waves of immigration and the advent of multiculturalism; struggles over the role of religion in society; the changing character of core institutions; the Palestinian-Israeli conflict; civil rights and the democratic character of the state. Course materials will include books, articles, and films. This course is equivalent to SOAN 0343. Occasional evening screenings. 3 hrs. lect./screening
Fall 2010, Fall 2012
INTL 0473 / SOAN 0473 - Diasporas and Homelands
Diasporas & Homelands
War, mass migration, and globalization have spurred development of diaspora communities and heightened scholarly interest in the phenomenon. In contrast to other groups of exiles and immigrants, diaspora communities seek integration within host countries as well as ongoing political, economic, and cultural ties to their homelands. A number of questions arise from these complex and dynamic relationships: How do diaspora communities maintain cultural distinctiveness within host countries? How do they maintain and reproduce cultural ties with homelands and other centers of diaspora life? What influence do diaspora communities have on political relationships between host countries and homelands? What influence do they have on internal homeland politics? Finally, what are the implications of the diaspora phenomenon for the future of the nation-state and globalization? Case studies will be drawn from a variety of diaspora communities, including Jews, Palestinians, Armenians, Africans, and Indians. This course is equivalent to SOAN 0473. 3 hrs. sem.
Fall 2009, Fall 2011