You Be the Judge

For over a thousand years, our mostimportant cultural activity has been the study of Talmud. It has sustained us through persecution and exile, shaping the discourse of our people and serving as the crowning achievement of our intellectual tradition. Perhaps you have been curious about the Talmud, but thought it was complex and inaccessible to anyone lacking extensive training.

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“You Be the Judge,” an innovative introduction to this magnificent work. You need no prior knowledge of the Talmud and no formal legal training. There are no prerequisites other than an open mind. “You Be the Judge” presents you with real cases brought before Beit Din, the court system of Jewish law. We provide the primary source texts from Talmud and put you in the driver’s seat. You will have the opportunity to question, discuss, and argue, based on principle and precedent. You will experience firsthand the exhilarating mental exploration that characterizes traditional Talmud study. Join us this fall in the ancient study halls of Jerusalem and Babylonia. Add your voice to other voices that span the millennia. You take the lead. You Be the Judge.

Lesson 1
Honor Among Thieves
If you are hired to give an inflated property assessment, and then are not paid for the service you performed, can you collect in court? In this lesson, we examine the enforceability of immoral contracts.
Lesson 2
Finders Keepers
What happens when objects are abandoned for long periods of time or are unavailable due to the ravages of war? Are there circumstances under which people, against their will, can lose the right to their property?
Lesson 3
When Glitter Turns Out To Be Gold
What happens if you lose a piece of costume jewelry that you agreed to watch over and it turns out to be real? How much liability do you assume for loss incurred because of negligence or willful destruction of an object that turns out to be worth more than expected?
Lesson 4
The Parasite
Is it fair to do business using your neighbor’s cow? May you sublet your apartment for more than you pay in rent? How do we distinguish creative opportunity from crass opportunism
Lesson 5
Your Money or My Life
What happens if under gun point, you deliver the property of your neighbor to robbers? Do you have to compensate your neighbor? We examine a real case, stemming from the Holocaust, in which this issue had to be addressed.
Lesson 6
Burdens of Proof
If two people lay claim to an object, how can we decide who is right? Upon whom does the burden of proof fall, and what kind of evidence will the court require?
Weight 1.2 lbs
Dimensions 8.5 x 11 x 2 in