This information is accurate as of the fellowship year indicated for each fellow.
Steven Kaplan is a professor of African studies and comparative religion at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He attended Brandeis University, where he earned a BA and an MA in Near Eastern and Judaic studies, and Harvard Divinity School, where he earned an MTS in comparative religion. He completed his PhD at the Hebrew University, where he has taught since 1984. Kaplan’s research concerns the religious and social history of traditional Ethiopia. He has written extensively on Orthodox Christianity, missions, and the dynamics of conversion. He is also a world-renowned expert on Ethiopian Jews and has written several books and numerous articles on their history in Ethiopia and adjustment in Israel.
While at the Radcliffe Institute, Kaplan will be part of a humanities cluster, “Cultural Creativity in the Ethiopian Orthodox Diaspora in the United States.” He will examine the Ethiopian Christian ritual cycle as performed by members of the Ethiopian Orthodox diaspora in the United States. He will be documenting ritual practice and attempting to discover what communities are created and sustained through these ritual events.
In addition to his research and teaching, Kaplan has held a number of senior administrative positions at the Hebrew University, including director of the Institute for Asian and African Studies, provost of the Rothberg International School, and dean of the Faculty of Humanities. He has been a visiting scholar at Boston University, Harvard University, the University of Hamburg, the University of London, and, most recently, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.