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The Deacon's Bench

A lecturer at Oxford University’s Center for Jewish Studies claims colleagues discriminated against her after she converted to Christianity.

From the Telegraph:

Dr Tali Argov says she was overlooked for promotion, stripped of her privileges and cold-shouldered at social gatherings.

She says staff wanted to vet her lectures to make sure that, as a Christian, she would not criticise Israel.

Eventually she claims she was made redundant from her post at the prestigious Oxford Centre for Hebrew & Jewish Studies, despite offering to take on new roles.

“It is my belief that, following firstly the conversion of my husband and then the conversion of myself, the treatment which I received as an employee of the Respondents was very different and a number of incidents occurred which led me to believe that I was being discriminated against,” Dr Argov told Reading Employment Tribunal hearing this week.

Dr Argov told the hearing, where she is claiming unfair dismissal and discrimination on the grounds of religion or belief, that she and her husband, Eran, were raised in the Jewish faith and lived in Israel until he was offered a place at Brasenose College, Oxford, to write a doctoral thesis.

They moved to England in 1996 and in 2000 Dr Argov, then studying for a PhD at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, was offered the full-time post of Lector of Modern Hebrew at the Oxford Centre for Hebrew & Jewish Studies. The centre is independent but its students are part of the traditional Oxford college system.

Dr Argov said she was welcomed and appreciated but the “honeymoon” ended after her husband was baptised into the Church of England in 2005, after which time “all those kind, heart-warming gestures disappeared overnight” and she was “considered guilty by association”.

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