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Miriam UdelJudith London Evans Director of the Tam Institute of Jewish StudiesAssociate Professor of Yiddish Language, Literature, and Culture


PhD, Harvard University, 2008


Teaching Fields: Modern Jewish literature, Yiddish culture

Miriam Udel is associate professor of German Studies and Judith London Evans Director of the Tam Institute of Jewish Studies at Emory University, where her teaching focuses on Yiddish language, literature, and culture. She holds an AB in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations and a PhD in Comparative Literature, both from Harvard University. She was ordained in 2019 as part of the first cohort of the Executive Ordination Track at Yeshivat Maharat, a program designed to bring qualified mid-career women into the Orthodox Jewish rabbinate.

Udel is the author of Never Better!: The Modern Jewish Picaresque (University of Michigan Press), winner of the 2017 National Jewish Book Award in Modern Jewish Thought and Experience. She is the editor and translator of Honey on the Page: A Treasury of Yiddish Children’s Literature (NYU Press, 2020), winner of the Judaica Reference Award from the Association of Jewish Libraries. Five works from this collection were adapted into the streaming radio play Somewhere Very Far Away by Seattle’s Tales of the Alchemysts Theater. Udel’s translation of Chaver Paver’s 1935 story collection about the adventures of a lovable proletarian mutt became the basis for Theater Emory’s 2021 puppet film Labzik: Tales of a Clever Pup. Recipient of an NEH Public Scholar grant in 2021-22, Udel is completing UMBRELLA SKY: CHILDREN’S LITERATURE AND MODERN JEWISH WORLDMAKING, under contract with Princeton University Press for publication in late 2024.