Geoffrey Claussen joined the Elon faculty in August 2011 as an Assistant Professor of Religious Studies. In April 2012, he was named the Lori and Eric Sklut Emerging Scholar in Jewish Studies. He is also the founding director of Elon's Jewish Studies program, which launched in Fall 2012.
Prof. Claussen's courses cover the broad history of the Jewish tradition, from the Hebrew Bible to contemporary Judaism. His primary research interests are in Jewish ethics, with a focus on the legacy of the nineteenth-century Musar movement. Before arriving at Elon, he served as a Visiting Instructor at Oberlin College and as a fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture at the University of Virginia.
Grants and fellowships received from:
Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture, University of Virginia
Targum Shlishi Foundation
Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture
Jewish Theological Seminary Graduate School
National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership (CLAL)
Crown Family Foundation
Awards at the Jewish Theological Seminary: Aaron Friedenwald Prize in Jewish Theology (co-recipient); Rabbi Jacob S. Minkin Prize in Jewish Philosophy; Isaac H. Wolfson Memorial Award; Bernard and Sydell Citron Scholastic Prize (co-recipient)
Awards and honors at Carleton College: Second Century Student Award; Jean Schmidt Prize; Honors in Independent Study; Distinction in Comprehensive Exercise; Distinction in Major; Phi Beta Kappa.
- “The American Jewish Revival of Musar.” The Hedgehog Review, vol. 12, no. 2 (2010): 63-72.
- “Sharing the Burden: Rabbi Simhah Zissel Ziv on Love and Empathy.” Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics, vol. 30, no. 2 (2010): 151-169.
- “God and Suffering in Heschel’s Torah Min Ha-Shamayim.” Conservative Judaism, vol. 61, no. 4 (2010): 17-42.
- “Jewish Virtue Ethics and Compassion for Animals: A Model from the Musar Movement.” CrossCurrents, vol. 61, no. 2 (2011): 208-216.
- “The Practice of Musar.” Conservative Judaism vol. 63, no. 2 (2012): 3-26.
- “Introducing Jewish Studies through Jewish Thought and Practice.” Shofar, vol. 32, no. 4 (2014): 60-75.
- “A Jewish Perspective on War, Scripture, and Moral Accounting.” The Journal of Scriptural Reasoning, vol. 13, no. 2 (2014).
Forthcoming book, under contract with SUNY Press:
Sharing the Burden: Rabbi Simhah Zissel Ziv and the Path of Musar
Member of the Society of Jewish Ethics, the Association for Jewish Studies, the American Academy of Religion, and the Rabbinical Assembly
Leadership in the Society of Jewish Ethics:
- Vice President, 2013-
- Annual Meeting Co-Chair, 2012, 2013
- Board of Directors, 2011-
- Annual Meeting Program Committee, 2009-2011
- Associate Editor, Journal of Jewish Ethics