Dear colleagues and friends,

In cooperation with Sigmund Freud University, you are cordially invited to an

International Conference on Jews in Diaspora:
A study of the Jewish Diaspora experience in the Middle East after the Establishment of the State of Israel.

Tuesday 24 – Wednesday 25 September 2019, Sigmund Freud University, Vienna

Download: Conference Programme (pdf)

The conference aims at discussing:

  • How the establishment of the State of Israel affected the Jews in diaspora in the Middle East.
  • The identity of Jewish Diaspora following the establishment of the state of Israel.
  • Integration vs.  Assimilation:  how  immigrants have adapted to the new  environment, while maintaining their cultural and religious bonds.
  • Regime change and persecution of Jewish communities; Forced immigration and resettlement the modern era.

We are planning to publish a volume with selected articles in English.

Conference Organizers:
Behnaz Hosseini & Ourania Roditi


Tuesday 24 September 2019, Festsaal, Sigmund Freud University,Vienna  
at 10:00 am – 18:00 pm

09:30               Registration & Coffee
10:00                Welcome Speeches

Moderator:  Dr. Christian Cwik, Center for Inter-American Studies, Karl-Franzens-Universität, Graz

  • The vice- Rector of Sigmund Freud University, Univ.-Prof. Dr. Brigitte Sindelar
  • Professor Armin Lange, Professor for Second  Temple Judaism at the University of Vienna, Institute for Jewish Studies
  • Professor  Wolfgang Treitler  – Vice-Director  of Studies – Catholic  Theology  Directorate  of Studies, Department  of Systematic Theology  and Ethics, University of Vienna: Dreams and Reality. Aharon Appelfeld’s Transformation of his Jewish-Assimilated Childhood to the Jewish State of Israel
  • Mr. Eric Frey, publicist, editor of der Standard

Lunch Break: 12:00 – 13:00

First Panel: 13:00 – 15:00  The Jewish Diaspora in Iran

Panel chair:  Dr. Thomas Schmidinger, Lecturer at the Institute of Political Science, University of Vienna and the University of Applied Sciences, Vorarlberg.

  • Dr.  Alessandra Cecolin, Lecturer, History and Philosophy, University of Aberdeen: Jews in Iran
  • Dr. Farhad Gohardani, Postdoctoral researcher at York St. John University and Dr. Zahra Tizro, Senior Lecturer at the University of East London: Local and global forces at play in the critical interactions between Jewish and non-Jewish communities:  the phenomenology, genealogy and archaeology of a glocal crisis – through Skype
  • Dr. Ariane Sadjed, Post-doctoral Researcher at the Institute for Iranian Studies, Austrian Academy of Sciences: Narratives of being Jewish in Iran
  • Dr. Yasser Mirdamadi, PhD candidate in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies, the University of Edinburgh – The Reception of Martin Buber as a Jewish philosopher in post-revolutionary Iran – through Skype

Coffee Break: 15:00 – 15:30

Second Panel: 15:30 – 17:00 – The Jewish Diaspora and the Middle East

Panel Chair:  Dr. Philipp Bruckmayr, Department of Near Eastern Studies, University of Vienna

  • Dr. Bahiya Alamin Kanoun, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Martyrs, Missing and Social Affairs in the transitional government of Libya
  • Dr. Yoann Morvan, CNRS (Idemec) Aix Marseille University- Istanbul Jewish minority: Between diasporic identity, Turkish national society and Zionism
  • Khairuldeen  AL Makhzoomi, Researcher  at UC Berkeley,  The Forgotten Minorities:  The History of Iraqi Jews from 1948-1971 – video presentation

17:00 – 18:00  Special Event:
Dr. Azadeh Givtash will introduce Mr. Edwin Shuker, Vice-President of the Board  of  Deputies of  British  Jews  and former Vice- President of the European  Jewish Congress, Projection of the acclaimed documentary:   ‘Jews, Muslims,  Christians – we were all Iraqis – it was Paradise’

Wednesday 25 September 2019, Festsaal, Sigmund Freud University,Vienna
at 9:30 am – 18:00 pm

First Panel: 09:30 – 11:00 – Jews in Iraq

Panel Chair:  Mag. Emma McNally , Director of the English Programme – Psychotherapy, Sigmund Freud University

  • Dr. Esther Webman, senior research fellow at the Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies and the Stephen Roth Institute for the Study of Antisemitism and Racism in Tel Aviv University  – Manifestations  of Solidarity  – The Egyptian  Jewish Community  Responds to the Nazi Persecution of German Jews
  • Faisal Jeber, Geologist & Archaeologist.. co-founder and director of Gilgamesh Center for Antiquities and Heritage Protection: The effect of Establishing Israel on Jewish Community in Mosul City – video presentation
  • Dr. Shilan Fuad Hussein, independent scholar, PHD University of Urbino, Italy – The Jews Diaspora in the Middle-East: the case of Iraqi Kurds.

11:00 – 12:00  Special event:
Dr. Azadeh Givtash will introduce Mr. Avraham Grant, football manager, who will talk about his own family’s experience through Holocaust till present time.

Lunch Break:  12:00 -13:00

Second Panel: 13:00-15:00 – The Jewish Diaspora and northern Africa

Panel Chair:  Dr. Michael Platzer, President, International Association for the Advancement of Innovative Approaches to Global Challenges, Chair at Alliance of NGOs on Crime Prevention & Criminal Justice

  • Professor Emanuela Trevisan Semi – Ca’ Foscari University of Venice – Did the birth of the State ofIsrael strongly impact the Jewish Moroccan Diaspora? For a more nuanced narrative
  • Professor Michèle Baussant – CNRS Paris – Three wars and three exiles: the Jews of Egypt
  • Dr. Piera Rossetto – Hertha Firnberg Research Fellow Centrum für Jüdische Studien, University of Graz – The multiple legacies of the departure of Jews from Libya (1948-1952).
  • Dr. Hersh Abdalla Hama Karim. Lecturer in the University of Sulaymani. College of Humanity and science, Department of History / Associate Dean College of Humanities: Oral History of the Trip of the Jews of Kurdistan to Israel – v ideo presentation

Coffee Break: 15:00-15:30

Third panel:  15:30 – 17 :00  The Jewish Diaspora and the Middle East / 3

Panel Chair: Marie-Pauline Wiebe , B.A. MA, Department of Jewish Studies, University of Vienna

  • Nadia Malinovich, Associate Professor of American Studies, Groupe Sociétés Religions Laïcités, CNRS/EPHE, PSL Research University- Between Integration and Discrimination: Jewish life in Beirut, 1948-1975
  • Dr. Anzi Menashe – Lecturer, Department of Jewish History Ben-Gurion University of the Negev – Jews in Yemen, Yemenites in Israel (1951-1962): Diaspora of Yemenite Jews
  • Dr. Birgit Amman, Professor of Political Sciences at Potsdam University of Applied Sciences: Kurdish Jewry rediscovered – video presentation

17:00–17:30   Special Event:

Dr. Azadeh Givtash will introduce Mr. Raphael  Luzon,  Chairman of the Union of Libyan  Jews,  Projection of the documentary: ‘’Jews of Libya”

  • Concluding Remarks: 17:30-18:00
    Professor Wolfgang Treitler – Vice-Director of Studies – Catholic Theology Directorate of Studies , Department of Systematic Theology and Ethics, University of Vienna


We will be pleased to see you in Vienna.

If you require further information please contact Ourania Roditi & Behnaz Hosseini at E-Mail:



Flyer_Jews in Diaspora_SFU (pdf)

Conference Programme (pdf)