Sefaria

Revolutionizing Jewish education and engagement by bringing the Jewish textual tradition into the digital age through an interactive, comprehensive online library of Jewish texts and commentaries

We’ve come a long way since schlepping around scrolls in the desert. Thanks to Sefaria, you can now read the Talmud on your smartphone, making 3,000 years of Jewish texts available in Hebrew and English. Sefaria is dedicated to building the future of Jewish learning in an open and participatory way, revolutionizing Jewish education and engagement by assembling an interactive, comprehensive, free online living library of Jewish texts and their commentaries.

For thousands of years, the heavy volumes of biblical and rabbinic literature have been available only to those with enough money to acquire them or the access to the right institutions and libraries—and even then, only to those with enough training were able to understand the antiquated Hebrew and Aramaic. All of Sefaria’s code is open source, and all of its content is free for use and reuse. Its innovation makes it easy for a teacher to copy a page of text for a classroom activity, for a scholar or technologist to download the entire library for research, or for anyone to start a new conversation surrounding the texts. Even Amazon’s taking advantage of this, with Alexa Torah Scholar, which lets people ask Amazon devices to recite verses of Tanakh. In five years Sefaria has worked to increase the capacity of teachers to harness digital tools effectively in their craft and use real product feedback to inform training sessions, conference presentations, and research studies. Sefaria believes that Jewish texts should be living, so text is hyperlinked and interactive. It ensures full access by making the library usable for those with visual impairments and has created sefaria.org.il for native Hebrew speakers. Although the core library will not be complete until 2019 (it takes a long time to get to all 150 million words), Sefaria has already had some big wins. For the Jewish people, our texts are our collective inheritance, and Sefaria is making sure that all Jews—and all people—have access to the inherited texts in a way they can interact with and understand.

  • Region

    New York
  • Population Served

    Adults Children College Students Educators
  • Program Area(s)

    Jewish Education Media & Technology
  • Life Cycle Stage

    Mezzanine
  • Contact

    Daniel Septimus
  • Email

    ds@sefaria.org
  • Phone

    347-804-6482
  • Website

    sefaria.org
  • Twitter

    @sefariaproject
  • Facebook

    sefaria.org
  • Address

    174 Hudson Street, Sixth Floor New York, NY 10013
  • Founded

    2013
  • Board Chair

    Joshua Foer
  • 2017 Expenses

    $4,500,000

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