David N. Myers
David N. Myers (born 1960) is a professor of history at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he holds the Sady and Ludwig Kahn Chair in Jewish History. His research focuses on modern Jewish intellectual and cultural history.
Early life and education
A native of Scranton, Pennsylvania, Myers received his A.B. cum laude from Yale College in 1982. He commenced graduate studies in Jewish history at Tel Aviv University (1982–84) before moving on to study medieval Jewish thought at Harvard University (1984–85). He then moved to Columbia University, where he worked under the supervision of Yosef Hayim Yerushalmi. Myers received his Ph.D. with distinction in 1991. His dissertation was devoted to the Institute for Jewish Studies at the Hebrew University. This became the basis of his first book, Re-Inventing the Jewish Past: European Jewish Intellectuals and the Zionist Return to History (New York: Oxford University Press, 1995). Having explored a peak moment in the evolution of Jewish historicism in Jerusalem in the 1920s, Myers next examined the range of philosophical and theological critiques of historicism in the same period in Resisting History: Historicism and its Discontents in German-Jewish Thought (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2003). He then undertook to rescue from oblivion the brilliant, if oft-forgotten, Jewish thinker Simon Rawidowicz (1897–1957). Best known as the author of the massive Bavel ve-Yerushalayim (Babylon and Jerusalem), Rawidowicz authored a text that he never published in the early 1950s devoted to the claim that after 1948, the age-old Jewish Question had been transformed into the Arab Question. Myers translated (along with Arnold Band) and analyzed this text in Between Jew and Arab: The Lost Voice of Simon Rawidowicz (Hanover, NH: University Press of New England, 2008). Recently, he has been engaged in research on the Satmar Hasidic community of Kiryas Joel, NY.
Myers joined the faculty of the UCLA History Department in 1991 as a lecturer and 1992 as an assistant professor. He served for ten years as the director of the UCLA Center for Jewish Studies and, from 2010–15, as the Robert N. Burr Department Chair of the UCLA History Department. He also has served since 2003 as the co-editor, along with Elliott Horowitz and Natalie Dohrmann, of the Jewish Quarterly Review. He is an elected fellow of the American Academy for Jewish Research.
Myers has been actively involved in various Jewish communal organizations at local and national levels, including the New Israel Fund and the Progressive Jewish Alliance. He has written widely on Israel-related and Jewish community issues.
- Re-Inventing the Jewish Past: European Jewish Intellectuals and the Zionist Return to History. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995 ISBN 978-0195098426
- Resisting History: Historicism and its Discontents in German-Jewish Thought. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2003 ISBN 978-0691146607
- Between Jew and Arab: The Lost Voice of Simon Rawidowicz. Hanover and London: Brandeis University Press, 2008 ISBN 978-1584657361
- David N. Myers and William V. Rowe, eds. From Ghetto to Emancipation: Historical and Contemporary Reconsiderations of the Jewish Community, introduction by D. N. Myers. Scranton, PA: University of Scranton Press, 1997 ISBN 9780940866720
- David N. Myers and David B. Ruderman, eds. The Jewish Past Revisited: Reflections on Modern Jewish Historians, introduction by D. N. Myers. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1998 ISBN 9780300191530
- Elisheva Carlebach, John M. Efron, and David N. Myers, eds. Jewish History and Jewish Memory: Essays in Honor of Yosef Hayim Yerushalmi. Hanover, NH: University Press of New England, 1998 ISBN 978-0874518719
- Richard Hovannisian and David N. Myers, eds. Enlightenment and Diaspora: The Armenian and Jewish Cases. Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1999 ISBN 978-0788506048
- Michael Brenner and David N. Myers, eds. Jüdische Geschichtsschreibung heute: Themen, Positionen, Kontroversen. Munich: Beck Verlag, 2002 ISBN 978-3406488788
- David N. Myers et al. eds. Acculturation and its Discontents: The Italian Jewish Experience between Integration and Exclusion. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2008 ISBN 9780802098511
- David N. Myers and Alexander Kaye, eds. The Faith of Fallen Jews: Yosef Hayim Yerushalmi and the Writing of Jewish History. Hanover, NH: University Press of New England, 2013 ISBN 978-1611684872
- Michael A. Meyer and David N. Myers, eds. Between Jewish Tradition and Modernity: Essays in Honor of David Ellenson. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2014 ISBN 9780814338599