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Accounting for the Commandments in Medieval Judaism explores the discursive formation of the commandments as a generative matrix of Jewish thought and life in the posttalmudic period. Each study sheds light on how medieval Jews crafted the commandments out of theretofore underdetermined material. By systematizing, representing, or interrogating the amorphous category of commandment, medieval Jewish authors across both the Islamic and Christian spheres of influence sought to explain, justify, and characterize Israel’s legal system, divine revelation, the cosmos, and even the divine order. This volume correlates bodies of knowledge—such as jurisprudence, philosophy, ethics, pietism, and kabbalah—that are normally treated in isolation into a single conversation about a shared constitutional concern.
11Q19, 11Q20, 11Q21, 4Q524, 5Q21 with 4Q365a
In this volume, Schiffman and Gross present a new edition of all of the manuscript evidence for the Temple Scroll from Qumran. It includes innumerable new readings and restorations of all of the manuscripts as well as a detailed critical apparatus comparing the manuscripts of the Temple Scroll as well as Qumran biblical manuscripts and the ancient versions. Each manuscript is provided with a new translation, and a commentary is presented for the main text. Also included are a general introduction, bibliography of published works on the text, catalog of photographic evidence, and concordance including all vocables in all the manuscripts and their restorations. This work promises to move research on the Temple Scroll to a new level.
In Intention in Talmudic Law: Between Thought and Deed, Shana Strauch Schick offers the first comprehensive history of intention in classical Jewish law (1st-6th centuries CE). Through close readings of rabbinic texts and explorations of contemporaneous legal-religious traditions, Strauch Schick constructs an intellectual history that reveals remarkable consistency within the rulings of particular sages, locales, and schools of thought. The book carefully traces developments across generations and among groups of rabbis, uncovering competing lineages of evolving legal and religious thought, and demonstrating how intention gradually became a nuanced, differentially applied concept across a wide array of legal realms.
The Joel Roth Jubilee Volume
Hakol Kol Yaakov: The Joel Roth Jubilee Volume contains twenty articles dedicated to Rabbi Joel Roth, written by colleagues and students. Some are academic articles in the general area of Talmud and Rabbinics, while others are rabbinic responsa that treat an issue of contemporary Jewish law. In his career, Joel Roth has been known as a scholar and teacher of Talmud par excellence, and, without question, as the preeminent decisor of Jewish law for the Conservative movement of his generation. In the meticulous style and approach of the Talmud scholarship of his generation, Roth painstakingly and precisely assayed the vast array of rabbinic legal sources, and proceeded to apply these in pedagogy, in scholarship and particularly in the production of contemporary legal responsa. The articles in this volume reflect the unique and integrated voice and vision that Joel Roth has brought to the American Jewish community.
A Critical Edition, Commentary and Reconstruction. Cambridge Genizah Studies Series, Volume 12
Author: Marc Michaels
In Sefer Tagin Fragments from the Cairo Genizah, Marc Michaels transcribes and recreates fragments of arguably the earliest found manuscript of the manual for sofrim (scribes) concerning the decorative tagin (tittles) and 'strange' letter forms that adorn certain words in the Torah. Comparing these found fragments against other core and secondary sources of Sefer Tagin (including several pages of a new secondary source), Michaels establishes the most likely readings to assist the reconstruction of the fragments and shed light on the original intention of the author of Sefer Tagin.
Reading Talmudic Sources as Arguments: A New Interpretive Approach elucidates the unique characteristics of Talmudic discourse culture. Approaching Talmudic literature from a linguistic perspective, the book shows the extensive and hidden ways in which later rabbis used early formulations. Applying Quentin Skinner's interpretive question “What was the author doing in composing the text in this particular way?" to Talmudic literature reveals that Talmudic debate is not only about ideas, concepts and laws but also about the latter's connection to pre-existing formulations. These early traditions, rather than only being accepted or not, are used by later generations to build their own arguments. The book articulates the function of tradition at the time that Rabbinic Judaism was forged.
Editors: Zvi Stampfer and Amir Ashur
The articles in this volume focus on the legal, linguistic, historical and literary roles of Jewish women in the Islamic world of the Middle Ages. Drawing heavily on manuscript evidence from the Cairo Genizah, the authors examine the challenges involved in the identification and interpretation of women’s letters from medieval Egypt, the registers of women’s written language, the relations between Jewish women and the Muslim legal system, the conversion of women, visions of women in Hell and gendered readings in the aggadic tradition of Judaism.
Jewish Community, Religion, and Family in Early Modern Metz
In Law’s Dominion, Jay Berkovitz offers a novel approach to the history of early modern Jewry. Set in the city of Metz, on the Moselle river, this study of a vibrant prerevolutionary community draws on a wide spectrum of legal sources that tell a story about community, religion, and family that has not been told before.
Focusing on the community’s leadership, public institutions, and judiciary, this study challenges the assumption that Jewish life was in a steady state of decline before the French Revolution. To the contrary, the evidence reveals a robust community that integrated religious values and civic consciousness, interacted with French society, and showed remarkable signs of collaboration between Jewish law and the French judicial system.

In Law’s Dominion, Jay Berkovitz has gathered and meticulously mined a dazzling array of rich and complex rabbinic texts and records from Western Europe during the early modern period, including the pinkas of the rabbinic court of Metz that he previously rescued from oblivion. What emerges is a remarkably fresh depiction and incisive comparative treatment of central aspects of Jewish law, religion and family, which will have far-reaching ramifications for all future studies in these disciplines.
-Ephraim Kanarfogel, E. Billi Ivry University Professor of Jewish History, Literature, and Law at Yeshiva University
Trading Routes and the Development of Commercial Law
Migrating Words, Migrating Merchants, Migrating Law examines the connections that existed between merchants’ journeys, the languages they used and the development of commercial law in the context of late medieval and early modern trade. The book, edited by Stefania Gialdroni, Albrecht Cordes, Serge Dauchy, Dave De ruysscher and Heikki Pihlajamäki, takes advantage of the expertise of leading scholars in different fields of study, in particular historians, legal historians and linguists. Thanks to this transdisciplinary approach, the book offers a fresh point of view on the history of commercial law in different cultural and geographical contexts, including medieval Cairo, Pisa, Novgorod, Lübeck, early modern England, Venice, Bruges, nineteenth century Brazil and many other trading centers.

Contributors are Cornelia Aust, Guido Cifoletti, Mark R. Cohen, Albrecht Cordes, Maria Fusaro, Stefania Gialdroni, Mark Häberlein, Uwe Israel, Bart Lambert, David von Mayenburg, Hanna Sonkajärvi, and Catherine Squires.
Diskurse zur sozialen Bedeutung von Tischgemeinschaft, Speiseverboten und Reinheitsvorschriften
In Essen im antiken Judentum und Urchristentum untersucht Christina Eschner die Auseinandersetzungen zum jüdischen Gesetz innerhalb des Urchristentums vor dem Hintergrund vergleichbarer Diskurse im antiken Judentum. Ziel ist es, die urchristliche Praxis des Gesetzes in ihrem größeren Kontext darzustellen und ihr gegebenenfalls einen bestimmten Platz im facettenreichen Bild der zeitgenössischen jüdischen Strömungen zuzuweisen. Dabei finden Schriften aus Qumran, dem griechischsprachigen und dem rabbinischen Judentum Berücksichtigung. Der Fokus liegt auf Vorschriften zu verbotenen Speisen, zur Tischgemeinschaft und zur erlaubten Art und Weise der Nahrungsaufnahme. Auch pagane Traditionen werden einbezogen. Damit ist diese Studie besonders interdisziplinär ausgerichtet. Sie bewegt sich an der Schnittstelle zwischen Themenfeldern der neutestamentlichen Wissenschaft, der Altphilologie, der Alten Geschichte und der Judaistik. Sie kommt zu dem Ergebnis, dass die urchristlichen Diskurse zum Essen nicht auf eine vollständige Abschaffung der entsprechenden jüdischen Gesetzesanordungen zielen.

In Essen im antiken Judentum und Urchristentum Christina Eschner examines the Early Christian disputes about the Jewish law against the background of Ancient Jewish discourses on commands of the law, in order to situate the Early Christian practice of the law within its broader context. Jewish sources include the Dead Sea Scrolls, Jewish writings in Greek and early rabbinic texts. This study focusses on rules concerning prohibited food, table fellowship and the permissible way of food intake. Pagan traditions are also considered. Thus, the work has an interdisciplinary orientation, discussing issues at the junction of New Testament studies, Classics, Ancient History and Jewish studies. It concludes that Early Christian food discourses do not aim for the complete abolition of the law.