II. COURSE TOPICS AND GOALS
January 19-March 16
In the first half of the semester we will look at the sources for Rabbinic responsibility, who has that authority, what is the binding nature of Rabbinic ordinances, and how Rabbinic authority has and has not changed through history
March 18-May 4
In the second half of the semester we will analyze the development of Minhagim, the binding nature of customs, and what we do when customs come in conflict with issues such as family relationships or modern sensitivities
General goals: familiarity with the Halachic system and an understanding of the Halachic process, key sefarim and their authors.
Supplementary assignments (optional but important) listed on cover page of each booklet. Building reading skills is not a primary goal of this course, but it should be a primary personal goal.