Suzanne Last Stone, Director
Suzanne Last Stone is University Professor of Jewish Law and Contemporary Civilization, Professor of Law, and Director of the Center for Jewish Law and Contemporary Civilization, Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University. She has held the Gruss Visiting Chair in Talmudic Civil Law at both the Harvard and University of Pennsylvania Law Schools, and also has visited at Princeton, Columbia Law, Hebrew University Law, and Tel Aviv Law. She is a graduate of Princeton University and Columbia University Law School and was a Danforth Fellow in 1974 in Jewish History and Classical Religions at Yale University. Before joining the Cardozo faculty, Stone clerked for Judge John Minor Wisdom of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and then practiced litigation at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton and Garrison. In addition to teaching courses in Jewish Law and Political Thought and Jewish Law and American Legal Theory, she currently teaches Federal Courts and Law, Religion and the State.
Stone is the co-editor-in-chief of Diné Israel, a peer review journal of Jewish law, co-edited with Tel Aviv Law School. She is also on the editorial boards of the Jewish Quarterly Review and of Hebraic Political Studies. She is a member of the board of the Jewish People Policy Planning Institute, the International Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists, the Center for Ethics of Yeshiva University, and the International Summer School in Religion and Public Life.
Professor Stone writes and lectures on the intersection of Jewish thought, legal theory, and the humanities. Her publications include: "In Pursuit of the Counter-text: The Turn to the Jewish Legal Model in Contemporary American Legal Theory," (Harvard Law Review); "The Jewish Conception of Civil Society," in Alternative Conceptions of Civil Society (Princeton University Press); "Feminism and the Rabbinic Conception of Justice" in Women and Gender in Jewish Philosophy (Indiana University); and “Rabbinic Legal Magic” (Yale Journal of Law & Humanities). Her work has been translated into German, French, Italian, Hebrew, and Arabic. In Fall 2010, she delivered the Franz Rosenzweig Lectures in Religious Thought at Yale University.
Ari Mermelstein , Assistant Director
Ari Mermelstein is an Visiting Assistant Professor of Bible at Yeshiva College. He holds a PhD from NYU's Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies, a JD from NYU Law School, and a BA from Yeshiva College. Dr. Mermelstein's doctoral dissertation, "The Genesis of Jewish History: Creation, Covenant, and Historical Consciousness in the Wisdom of Ben Sira and the Book of Jubilees," focused on the use of creation theology to create a link between an unredeemed present and a glorious past in several works from Second Temple Judaism. His current research project examines the emotional world of the Qumran sect.