Gustavus Faculty Highlight Saint Peter Film Screening, Discussion

Bonnier Chair in Jewish Studies Dr. Samuel Kessler will host a screening of From Cairo to the Cloud for the Saint Peter community.
Posted on September 5th, 2019 by

Dr. Samuel Kessler

Gustavus Adolphus College religion professor Dr. Samuel Kessler is partnering with the Nicollet County Historical Society to host a screening of From Cairo to the Cloud, a documentary film that explores the impact of a trove of ancient Jewish documents that were discovered in Cairo in 1896. Held in the Saint Peter High School Performing Arts Center on Thursday, September 5 at 7 p.m., the event is free and open to the public.

“Composed of religious texts and medical prescriptions, literary treasures and love letters, marriage contracts and business reports, magical amulets and children’s drawings, the Cairo Geniza reveals every aspect of society, from the impoverished beggar to the celebrated scholar. Among the most striking of the Geniza’s many discoveries are hand-written drafts written by Moses Maimonides himself, the legendary 12th century rabbi, scholar, philosopher, and physician.


Larger, more varied and, arguably, more significant than the Dead Sea Scrolls, the half million fragments of the Geniza open a window into a vanished civilization that illuminates over a thousand years of Jewish, Christian and Muslim life at the heart of the Islamic world and testifies to a “golden age” of relative religious tolerance nearly unimaginable today.”

The screening will be followed by a panel discussion and audience question-and-answer session featuring Kessler and Gustavus professors Dr. Greg Kaster (history) and Dr. Fuad Naeem (religion) along with University of Minnesota doctoral student Noam Sienna. Kessler is hosting the screening through his role as the Bonnier Chair in Jewish Studies at Gustavus in conjunction with Department or Religion, the Nicollet County Historical Society, and Saint Peter Community and Family Education. The event is part of Saint Peter’s “Films on First Thursdays” series.


Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication JJ Akin


One Comment

  1. Judy Douglas says:

    This was a very interesting and informative film and something I knew
    nothing about. My thanks to Dr. Kessler for collaborating with the
    Treaty Site History Center and the St. Peter Community Education Office
    to bring this documentary to the community.