This book analyzes Jewish society in Roman Palestine in the time of the Mishnah (70–250 CE) in a systematic way, carefully delineating the various economic groups living therein, from the destitute, to the poor, to the middling, to the rich, and to the superrich. It gleans the various socioeconomic strata from the terminology employed by contemporary literary sources via contextual, philological, and historical-critical analysis. It also takes a multidisciplinary approach to analyze and interpret relevant archeological and inscriptional evidence as well as numerous legal sources.
The research presented herein shows that various expressions in the sources have latent meanings that indicate socioeconomic status. “Rich,” for example, does not necessarily refer to the elite, and “poor” does not necessarily refer to the destitute. Jewish society consisted of groups on a continuum from extremely poor to extremely rich, and the various middling groups played a more important role in the economy than has hitherto been thought.
Uncovering Jewish Creativity in Book III of the Sibylline oracles, Ashley L. Bacchi reclaims the importance of the Sibyl as a female voice of prophecy and reveals new layers of intertextual references that address political, cultural, and religious dialogue in second-century Ptolemaic Egypt. This investigation stands apart from prior examinations by reorienting the discussion around the desirability of the pseudonym to an issue of gender. It questions the impact of identifying the author’s message with a female prophetic figure and challenges the previous identification of paraphrased Greek oracles and their function within the text. Verses previously seen as anomalous are transferred from the role of Greek subterfuge of Jewish identity to offering nuanced support of monotheistic themes.
Jews in Dialogue discusses Jewish post-Holocaust involvement in interreligious and intercultural dialogue in Israel, Europe, and the United States. The essays within offer a multiplicity of approaches and perspectives (historical, sociological, theological, etc.) on how Jews have collaborated and cooperated with non-Jews to respond to the challenges of multicultural contemporaneity. The volume’s first part is about the concept of dialogue itself and its potential for effecting change; the second part documents examples of successful interreligious cooperation. The volume includes an appendix designed to provide context for the material presented in the first part, especially with regard to relations between the State of Israel and the Catholic Church.
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.
Proverbs volume in the Septuagint Commentary Series Al Wolters gives a meticulous philological commentary on the text of Proverbs as found in the important fourth-century Codex Vaticanus, together with a careful transcription of the Vaticanus Greek text and a fresh English translation thereof. The focus of the commentary is on the semantic and grammatical aspects of the Greek, relying primarily on general Greek usage rather than on the underlying Hebrew, and drawing on a broad array of lexicographical and grammatical resources, as well as a detailed examination of twelve previous translations of LXX Proverbs. In the process, many new interpretations of the often difficult Greek are proposed.
Refugees from Nazi-occupied Europe in British Overseas Territories focusses on exiles and forced migrants in British colonies and dominions in Africa or Asia and in Commonwealth countries. The contributions deal with aspects such as legal status and internment, rescue and relief, identity and belonging, the Central European encounter with the colonial and post-colonial world, memories and generations or knowledge transfers and cultural representations in writing, painting, architecture, music and filmmaking. The volume covers refugee destinations and the situation on arrival, reorientation–and very often further migration after the Second World War–in Australia, Canada, India, Kenya, Palestine, Shanghai, Singapore, South Africa and New Zealand.
Contributors are: Rony Alfandary, Gerrit-Jan Berendse, Albrecht Dümling, Patrick Farges, Brigitte Mayr, Michael Omasta, Jyoti Sabharwal, Sarah Schwab, Ursula Seeber, Andrea Strutz, Monica Tempian, Jutta Vinzent, Paul Weindling, and Veronika Zwerger.
Targum Chronicles and Its Place Among the Late Targums heralds a paradigm shift in the understanding of many of the Jewish-Aramaic translations of individual biblical books and their origins. Leeor Gottlieb provides the most extensive study of Targum Chronicles to date, leading to conclusions that challenge long-accepted truisms with regard to the origin of Targums. This book’s trail of evidence convincingly points to the composition of Targums in a time and place that was heretofore not expected to be the provenance of these Aramaic gems of biblical interpretation. This study also offers detailed comparisons to other Targums and fascinating new explanations for dozens of aggadic expansions in Targum Chronicles, tying them to their rabbinic sources.
On the Life of Abraham displays Philo’s philosophical, exegetical, and literary genius at its best. Philo begins by introducing the biblical figures Enos, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob as unwritten laws. Then, interweaving literal, ethical, and allegorical interpretations, Philo presents the life and achievements of Abraham, founder of the Jewish nation, in the form of a Greco-Roman bios, or biography. Ellen Birnbaum and John Dillon explain why and how this work is important within the context of Philo’s own oeuvre, early Jewish and Christian exegesis, and ancient philosophy. They also offer a new English translation and detailed analyses, in which they elucidate the meaning of Philo’s thought, including his perplexing notion that Israel’s ancestors were laws in themselves.
In this volume, the relationship between Jews and media is not only vividly illustrated, but it is consciously drawn into the formation of modern Jewish history and modern media. Maya Balakirsky Katz addresses key Jewish-media intersections in which Jews and mass media implicated (or were implicated by) one another. In this study, Katz discusses the relationship that Jews have had with mass media forms of print, film, photography, advertising, and postcards within the periods that these media have gained cultural ascendancy. These historical moments are tethered to a broader conversation addressing the major theoretical issues at the center of the discourse on Jews and media. Bearing this mutually constructive relationship in mind,
Intersections between Jews and Media offers both a tangible demographic portrait of the real Jews who entered mass media and lays a theoretical and methodological framework for more qualitative analyses.