On the one hand Oxford has a mid-sized thriving Jewish community similar to that found in any city that has a large University and range of hi-tech industry, on the other hand Oxford attracts leading Jewish scholars who come to visit the Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies at nearby Yarnton and the Bodleian Library (which houses one of the world's leading collections of historic Jewish books and manuscripts).
The variety and frequency of Jewish and Israeli speakers and activities is exceptional and takes place in a large variety of frameworks, many of which are to be found below.
Oxford Jsoc is NOT just a religious society; our aims and likewise our events are varied in their nature. JSoc organises social, educational as well as religious events for students of all shades of observance - ranging from those who go to shul three times a day to three times a year. With prestigious speakers, cocktail parties, bagel brunches and of course Friday night meals, Jsoc provides a unique opportunity to mix with other Jewish students. We also provide meals every night of the week at the OJC (Oxford Jewish Community Centre) so eating kosher food in Oxford should never be an issue.
Oxford Israeli Cultural Society
Promoting Israeli culture in Oxford, we have guest speakers, food nights and other events.
The Oxford Israeli Cultural Society was set up because we love Israeli culture and we think that you will too. Through creative and innovative events that stand out in Oxford and give you the chance to experience things that you will enjoy, we hope to reflect the modern, diverse, vibrant and youthful character of Israel. The Oxford Israeli Cultural Society will bring a little piece of Israel to the heart of Oxford.
You can contact the Oxford Israeli Cultural Society through http://www.oxfordfreshersfair.org/society.php?id=78
The Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish studies
The Hebrew and Jewish Studies Unit, housed in the Oriental Institute, and the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies at Yarnton Manor, are the university’s principal bodies devoted to these subjects. Reflecting the interdisciplinary nature of the field, teaching and research staff belong to various faculties, including Oriental Studies, Modern Languages and Literature, History, Theology, and Classics. For information about our staff, please see the Hebrew and Jewish Studies section of the staff list. The Unit and the Centre sponsor a broad range of seminars and lectures each year, as well as hosting an active program of visiting scholars from all over the world. Two leading international journals in the field are based in Oxford: the Journal of Jewish Studies and the Journal of Modern Jewish Studies.
The centre houses the Leopold Muller Memorial Library at Yarnton Manor.
The Chabad House aims to function as a resource for Jewish learning, education for Jewish students, complementing the existing Jewish Society activities. They also work together with the Oxford community on educational projects for children, teenagers and adults, as well as developing contacts with Jews in the surrounding areas where there is no established Jewish community. The major part of their time is dedicated to providing programs for Jewish students studying at Oxford and Brookes University, whatever their affiliation, so as to strengthen their attachment to their Jewish roots. They provide kosher food at events and now run a midweek cafe.
Oxford Jewish Heritage
Oxford has one of the best documented medieval Jewish quarters in the world and the story of the Jews in Oxford is an integral and fascinating part of the history of the Jews of England. Learn about Jewish life in the city before the expulsion of 1290, come up to date with the story of the Jews since the 1655 re-admission and find out about the great Jewish contribution to Oxford University since Jewish students were accepted at the end of the 19th century.