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Special to the JTA Beijing University to Offer Formal Courses on Israel and Judaism

A university in the People’s Republic of China will for the first time offer formal courses on Israel and Judaism this semester. Martin Edelman has been appointed a Visiting Professor in the Department of International Politics at Beijing University.

Edelman, who teaches in the Department of Political Science at State University of New York (SUNY) in Albany, will teach three courses in Beijing: Israeli politics, Jewry and Jewish culture, and a graduate seminar on American politics in the Middle East.

“Given the previously strained relations between the People’s Republic of China and Israel, the fact that these courses will be taught is certainly an indication things are indeed opening up in the right direction,” Edelman told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency. “Beijing University is the premier university in the country. Students in these classes will be the next generation of faculty members and government experts on foreign policy.”

Edelman will teach at Beijing University during May and June. Several faculty members and advanced graduate students from Chinese universities have studied with him at SUNY in the past, as part of an exchange program between the schools.

The author of “Democratic Theories and the Constitution” and articles on the Israeli courts and political system, Edelman is currently working on a book on Israeli courts. From 1982-1983, he was a visiting professor at Tel Aviv University’s political science department.

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