Zvi Gilboa

Zvi Gilboa

Associate Professor
Unit: College of Arts and Sciences
Department: Middle Eastern and South Asian Languages and Cultures
Office location and address
145 New Cabell Hall
1605 Jefferson Park Ave
Charlottesville, Virginia 22904
Ph.D., Indiana University

Zvi Gilboa joined the University of Virginia in Fall 2011. His research primarily lies in the fields of Transnational Studies, German Literature and Culture, and Transnational Literature in Hebrew, and places special emphasis on the cultural and literary authorship of non-native speakers. Zvi's interest in languages is not limited to those that are "merely spoken"; he holds degrees in piano performance from Tel-Aviv University and Indiana University, and has long been immersed in several computer languages. With a great passion for digital typography that pertains to both research and teaching, Zvi constantly looks for ways to improve the typesetting of right-to-left scripts using transparent and modifiable typesetting frameworks.

Language and technology intersect in Zvi's teaching in a variety of areas, and are also at the heart of the assessment method he devised for the Modern Hebrew program, nick-named Show What You Know. Instead of taking traditional vocabulary quizzes, for instance, students in the program record videos in which they demonstrate their mastery of the vocabulary at stake. Assessment of grammar and oral proficiency takes place in a similar manner, and students thus record during the semester a large number of videos, each of which dedicated to a specific grammatical or conversational topic.

In addition to teaching during the regular academic year, Zvi also teaches in and directs the Modern Hebrew Summer Language Institute, which he established upon joining the university. The Hebrew SLI soon became famous (some say notorious) for the extreme amount of work that it involves, and has been particularly attractive for students who seek to surrender their freedom for eight weeks in exchange for high language competence at the end of the program.

HEBR 1010: Introduction to Modern Hebrew I
Credits: 4
An introduction to the pronunciation, vocabulary, grammar, and writing system of modern Israeli Hebrew. By the end of this sequence students have mastered the core grammatical principles of Hebrew, along with a basic vocabulary of 1000 words, and they are able to read and understand simple texts and carry out simple conversation. Includes material on Israeli culture, history, and politics.
HEBR 1020: Introduction to Modern Hebrew II
Credits: 4
Prerequisite: HEBR 1010.
COLA 1500: College Advising Seminars
Credits: 1
COLA courses are 1-credit seminars capped at 18 first-year students, all of whom are assigned to the instructor as advisees. They are topically focused on an area identified by the faculty member; they also include a significant advising component centered on undergraduate issues (e.g., choosing a major, study abroad opportunities, undergraduate research, etc.). For detailed descriptions see http://college.as.virginia.edu/COLA
HEBR 2010: Intermediate Modern Hebrew
Credits: 4
Continuation of the study of the fundamentals of grammar, with special attention to verb conjugation, noun declension, and syntactic structure, and their occurrence in texts which deal with modern Israeli culture and values. These texts, which include excerpts from newspapers and fiction, introduce 600 new words and expose the learner to political and other issues of modern Israel. Prerequisite: HEBR 1020 with grade of C or above, or instructor permission.
HEBR 2020: Intermediate Modern Hebrew
Credits: 4
Prerequisite: HEBR 1020 with grade of C or above, or instructor permission.
HEBR 3010: Advanced Modern Hebrew I
Credits: 3
This course focuses on the conjugation of weak, or hollow verbs, and the passive of all conjugations. It also continues the study of subordinate clauses with special attention to adverbial clauses and their use. Texts for the course, which form the basis for class discussion in Hebrew and exercises in Hebrew composition, are drawn from various genres. Prerequisite: HEBR 2020 or equivalent, or instructor permission.
MEST 3490: Dangerous in Danger: Refuge and Otherness in Times of Crisis
Credits: 3
In this course, we will examine how the current refugee crisis may be seen as a radical event of a scope that reaches beyond Europe and the Middle East. We will be looking at previously-shaped images of nation, religion, migration, and integration, as well as asylum, refuge, and citizenship. Ultimately, we will be using our newly gained knowledge as a tool to understand cultural inclusion and societal exclusion both "far away" and "at home."
MEST 3559: New Course in Middle Eastern Studies
Credits: 3
New course in Middle Eastern Studies.
GETR 3559: New Course in German in Translation
Credits: 1–4
This course provides the opportunity to offer a new topic in the subject area of German in translation. For more details on this class, please visit the department website at: http://www.virginia.edu/german/Undergraduate/Courses.
HEBR 4993: Independent Study in Hebrew
Credits: 1–3
Independent study for advanced students of Hebrew. Prerequisite: Instructor permission.
MESA 4999: Middle Eastern and South Asian Studies Senior Thesis II
Credits: 6
Thesis composition under the direction of a MESALC faculty member serving as thesis advisor and a second faculty member serving as second reader. The second faculty member may be from outside MESALC. Prerequisite: DMP major and instructor permission.
HEBR 8993: Independent Study in Hebrew
Credits: 1–3
Students whose proficiency in Modern Hebrew has already reached the advanced level, or alternatively students who for their research focus on Hebrew Literature in translation, will pursue an independent study that will focus on the reading and interpretation of texts, as well as the analysis of media. Prerequisite: HEBR 3010