Dr. Rachel Werczberger

Dr. Rachel Werczberger
Head of the "New Religious Movements" research group
Fields of Practice: 
Anthropology and sociology of religion, anthropology of Judaism, New Age spirituality and new religious movements, contemporary Jewish identities, science fiction and religion

Dr. Rachel Werczberger has a PhD in sociology and anthropology from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her doctoral dissertation, titled “When the New Age Entered the Jewish Bookshelf: Jewish Spiritual Renewal in Israel,” presents the phenomenon of Jewish spiritual renewal through an ethnographic study of two communities that were active in Israel in the beginning of the 2000s. In 2013–2015 she was a postdoctoral fellow of the Kreitman Foundation in the Jewish Thought Department at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. In the 2015–2016 academic year she will be a postdoctoral fellow at the Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. Her book Jews in the Age of Authenticity: Jewish Spiritual Renewal in Israel is to be published in 2016 by Peter Lang.

At the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute she is the co-director, with Prof. Boaz Huss and Dr. Adam Klin-Oron, of the research group on New Religious Movements in Israel. In 2013–2015 she co-directed, with Prof. Boas Huss, the research group titled Political Aspects of New Age Culture in Israel.