Professor of Philosophy
Wake Forest University
As a Lady Davis Fellow, I worked in Jerusalem for six months in the spring of 2001. My husband and I took time off during holidays to travel and hike in Israel. Our greatest shock was to recognize that despite all the hype on American television and to some degree in American newspapers, daily life in Israel was very much like daily life in North Carolina; going to work, meeting with friends, attending art events, paying bills and buying groceries. It was a great pleasure to see how well Hebrew University is prepared for exchange scholars, and how smoothly my family's transition into the routines of daily life happened precisely because of the immensely thoughtful hospitality of the Lady Davis Fellowship Administration and of the Office of International Affairs at Hebrew University. I am determined to return to Israel as soon as I will be able to, and recommend the fellowship Program wholeheartedly. I truly miss the intellectual stimulation of the many conversations with my colleagues at Hebrew University, the University's intensely cosmopolitan atmosphere, and the profoundly moving and rich intersection of cultures and histories in Jerusalem. But most of all, we miss the warmth and hospitality of the freinds we made during our stay.
Professor of Sociology
It's hard for me to believe that this time last year, between September and December of 2001, I was living in Jerusalem - and what a positive experience it was. Professionally, I met a number of new colleagues with whom I continue to correspond via email, and my work on collective memory and memorialization has been enriched both by my experiences within the very lively intellectuall milieu at Hebrew U, and by living in Israel.
Personally, it was a very memorable experience. By living near the city center for four months, I feel that I really entered into the rhythm of daily life in Jerusalem. I felt amazingly secure during my stay, especially having just experienced the events of September 11 back in NYC, where I live. One of the most important things I learned is that there is a huge gap between the media's depiction of Israel, and what the day-to-day experience of being there actually is like. While I exercised caution, to be sure, I found that my daily round was not that much different than it is here at home.
I am deeply appreciative for the Trust's support in enabling me to come to Israel -- my first visit, I might add, but hopefully not my last.
Professor of Law
I was at the Law Faculty at the Hebrew University under the auspices of the Lady Davis Fellowship from the end of June until the end of August 2002. During this time I lived in Jerusalem close to the center of town. I found my time there to be extremely rewarding from many different perspectives. My colleagues at the Hebrew Unviersity were consistently helpful in all aspects of my research, from computer access, to the ability to present findings in the setting of a faculty seminar, to the regular exchange of ideas. Needless to say, the University, and the Law Facutly in particular, were very affected by the August Bombing, which will leave permanent emotional wounds. At the same time, the community of scholars and administrative staff is extremely warm, positive, constructive and supportive. Any visiting scholar would find it a first-class environment in which to work. With repect to life beyond the University, daily life flourishes regardless of the reality of the threat from those who seek to harm the country and its inhabitants. A close-knit sense of support and common ethical purpose among people everywhere permits a visitor and his or her family to gain a strong appreciation for the people, cultural life, and the sense of history that continues to abound with vitality even in these difficult times.