Orit Malka is a Fellow of the Kogod Research Center at the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America. She is a researcher of Talmud and early Jewish law. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the Taube Center for Jewish studies in Stanford University, and will join the faculty of the law school and the Talmud department in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her research focuses on the political aspects of Talmudic Halacha, and the study of early Jewish law as a key to understanding important legal-political trends of antiquity.
Orit earned her PhD from Tel Aviv University. In her dissertation, titled “A Set of Witnesses: Testimony and Political Thought in Tannaitic Halakha,” she dealt with the unique rules that regulate admissibility of testimony in early rabbinic texts, and offered a new understanding of the notion of community building embedded in them. After submitting her dissertation and prior to her arrival to Stanford, Orit was a postdoc at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute where she held a biannual young scholar workshop on “Jewish political thought”. The workshop created a collaboration between scholars working on different fields of Jewish studies and aiming to find new ways to conceptualize legal – political ideas in the Jewish tradition. In multiple aspects of her current research Orit continues to explore the political ideas underpinning rabbinic law, seeking to spell out the substantial and unique contribution it may have to understanding not only the history of late antique political thought, but also the political legacy characterizing the Jewish tradition up to the present day.