Jonathan Helfand

3111 James Hall
718-951-5000, ext. 3993

Before retiring in 2012, Dr. Jonathan Helfand served Brooklyn College for more than four decades as Professor of Modern Jewish History, specializing in the social and religious history of French Jewry in the 19th century. In addition to teaching courses in his major field of specialization, he also taught "Introduction to Judaic Studies," "Holocaust and Halakhah," and "Studies in Jewish Customs." For more than twenty years, Prof. Helfand also directed the CUNY Program for Study in Israel (See the brochure at


His publications include:
French Jewry During the Second Republic and Second Empire, 1848-1870 (Ann Arbor, 1979).
"Entre tradition et réforme - une letter de Marchand Ennery," Archives Juives, 6,2 (1980).
"The Symbiotic Relationship Between French and German Jewry in the Age of Emancipation," LBI Yearbook, 29 (1984).
"The Ties Between French Jewry and Eretz-Israel in the First Half of the 19th Century," [Hebrew] Cathedra, 36 (June, 1985).
"Piety and Passports: Apostasy in 19th Century France," Jewish History 3,2 (1988).
"The Aborted Candidacy of Rabbi Asher Ginsburg: A failed Attempt at Modernization," Jewish History 15,1 (2001)
"Striving for Truth: Struggling with the Historical Critical Method," Edah Journal, 2,1 (2001).