Were Ancient Rabbis as Focused on Bible Interpretation as We Think They Were?

March 19 2019

The term midrash refers, loosely, to the style of exegesis practiced by the rabbis of the 1st through 8th centuries CE, a genre that often involves straying far outside the plain or literal meaning of the text. In The Origins of Midrash, Paul Mandel presents a novel theory of how midrash developed and suggests that interpreting the Bible was not the priority of the early talmudic sages. Yitz Landes writes in his review:

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Read more at Ancient Jew Review

More about: Judaism, Midrash, Religion & Holidays, Talmud

 

Israel’s New Government Is Neither a Win Nor a Loss for Either of the Major Parties

March 31 2020

On Thursday, when the news broke that Benjamin Netanyahu and Benny Gantz had agreed to form a national-unity government, pundits and politicians on both left and right seemed to agree that the incumbent prime minister had managed to outmaneuver his rival. But as details of the coalition agreement emerged, this interpretation began to seem less convincing. Haviv Rettig Gur explains:

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Read more at Times of Israel

More about: Benjamin Netanyahu, Benny Gantz, Israeli Election 2020, Israeli politics