Gerhard Scholem who, after his immigration from Germany to Palestine, changed his name to Gershom Scholem (Hebrew: גרשם שלום) (December 5, 1897 – February 21, 1982), was a German-born Israeli Jewish philosopher and historian. He is widely regarded as the founder of the modern, academic study of Kabbalah, becoming the first Professor of Jewish Mysticism at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His close friends included Walter Benjamin and Leo Strauss, and selected letters from his correspondence with those philosophers have been published.
Scholem is best known for his collection of lectures, Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism (1941) and for his biography Sabbatai Zevi, the Mystical Messiah (1973). His collected speeches and essays, published as On Kabbalah and its Symbolism (1965), helped to spread knowledge of Jewish mysticism among non-Jews.