Rachel Frommer

Tikvah Fellow

November 01, 2016

Rachel Frommer spent her summer as a Tikvah Fund summer fellow exploring “The Jewish Idea: Morality, Politics, and Culture.” Each week, Tikvah Fellows studied a core Jewish concept under the guidance of scholars who led them through explorations of foundational religious, philosophical, literary, and political texts. Which seminar was the most powerful for her? Studying the origins of modern Israeli statecraft by analyzing the writings of Theodor Herzl. “We read The Jewish State and select entries from Herzl’s diaries with Dr. Daniel Polisar of Shalem College,” she said. “It was incredibly illuminating to examine my own relationship with Israel through these discussions.” Also revelatory was the week spent dissecting Canadian writer A.M. Klein’s The Second Scroll with Dr. Ruth Wisse, a recently retired Harvard professor of Yiddish and comparative literature. Rachel’s own academic experience helped prepare her for the fellowship. “LCW has a strong literature department with a unique culture and nurturing faculty. Dr. Matthew Zarnowiecki, the department chair, is a remarkable teacher and adviser.”

Has this experience impacted your professional goals?

“The seminars urged me to think practically and seriously about what shape I want my life to take and what it must include. The seminars also gave me additional tools to help achieve my goals.”

Who’s your favorite author?

“John Milton, Anton Chekhov, George Steinbeck and George Eliot are always delicious.”

Advice for aspiring LCW English majors?

“Explore. Speak up if something interests you—and talk to Dr. Zarnowiecki. The faculty in the department is exceptional.”

What are your plans following the Fellowship?

“I’m working for The Algemeiner, an online paper that covers world news, particularly stories concerning international Jewry and the State of Israel.”