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Library at the Katz CAJS collection development policy

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Collection description

The Library at the Herbert D. Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies Library, located at 420 Walnut Street, holds approximately 200,000 volumes including a substantial rare book component and a significant corpus of manuscript materials ranging from Geniza fragments to 19th and 20th century personal papers and archival collections; it forms the core of Penn's research level collections in Judaic Studies. The collection is exceptionally rich in the history and literature of Judaism, including the Hebrew Bible, Rabbinica, Karaitica, Geonica, philology, and Jewish thought in general from late antiquity through the eighteenth century. It also has substantial holdings in the areas of modern Hebrew and Yiddish literature, as well as Judaica Americana.

Collections development at the CAJS library concentrates principally on the Hebrew Bible and the thought and literature of pre-modern Judaism, while the Penn Judaica Collection on campus contains major research collections in Biblical and ancient Near Eastern studies, as well as in modern Hebrew and Yiddish literatures. The campus collections provide strong support for the study of the history and cultures of Jews in the context of the Greco-Roman, early and medieval Christian and Islamic, and modern western civilizations. The Penn Museum Library supports the study of Biblical archaeology and the ancient Near East.

Guidelines for Collection Development

  • Subjects collected and levels of collecting

    Subjects Collected Levels of Collecting Notes
    Art History (Ancient and medieval only) 3F/3F
    Synagogue art and archaeology 4F/4F
    Folklore/Folklife (Ancient and Medieval only) 3F/2F
    Hebrew Bible (includes Apocrypha, Pseudepigrapha, Dead Sea Scrolls) 4F/4F
    Hebrew Language (Biblical through Medieval) 4F/4F
    Hebrew Literature
    Medieval through Early Modern 4Y/4Y
    Modern 2Y/2Y
    Holocaust Studies PAR137
    Israel (Modern) 3F/2F
    Jewish History
    Ancient 4F/4F
    Europe (Medieval through Early Modern) 4F/4F
    Middle East 4F/4F
    North America 3F/2F
    Jewish Thought (e.g. ethics, Hasidism, Kabbalah, philosophy) PAR12
    Medieval through Early Modern 4F/4F
    Modern 3F/3F
    Karaitica 4F/4F
    Liturgy PAR140
    Ancient 4F/4F
    Medieval through Early Modern 4F/4F
    Modern 2F/2F
    Rabbinica (includes customs, exegesis, laws, gaonica, responsa) PAR122, 125
    Ancient 4F/4F
    Medieval through Early Modern 4F/4F
    Modern 3F/3F
    Samaritan Studies 4F/4F
    Sephardic Languages & Literatures
    Judeo-Arabic 4F/4F
    Judeo-Persian 4F/4F
    Ladino 4F/4F
    Social Sciences 3F/2F
    Yiddish Languages & Literature (principally the history and philology of Yiddish) 3F/3F LLL263
    Zionism 3F/2F HIS379
  • Subjects collected and levels of collecting

    The following subjects form part of the larger contexts of the study of pre-modern Judaism and are represented in the CAJS Library at the levels indicated

  • Subjects collected and levels of collecting

    Subjects Collected Levels of Collecting
    Ancient Languages
    Akkadian 4F/3F
    Aramaic/Syriac 4F/4F
    Armenian 2F/2F
    Coptic & Egyptian 3F/2F
    Ethiopic 2F/2F
    Sumerian 3F/2F
    Ugaritic/Phoenician 4F/3F
    Ancient Near East & Archaeology
    Egyptology (Greco-Roman period) 3F/4F
    Syro-Palestinian (Greco-Roman period) 4F/3F
    Arabic & Islamic Studies (Medieval period only) 3F/3F
    Early & Medieval Christianity 2F/2F
    Semitic Languages & Linguistics 4F/4F

Related subject collections