David Roskies's Against the Apocalypse: Responses to Catastrophe in Modern PDF

By David Roskies

ISBN-10: 081560615X

ISBN-13: 9780815606154

This article records an almost unknown bankruptcy within the heritage of the refusal of Jews in the course of the a while to give up. the writer employs wide-ranging scholarship to the Holocaust and the thoughts linked to it, in confirmation of either continuities and violent endings.

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Additional info for Against the Apocalypse: Responses to Catastrophe in Modern Jewish Culture (Judaic Traditions in Literature, Music, and Art)

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Destruction or exile spelled not abandonment by God but punishment, and if the people returned to the ways of the Lord, He would return them not to Egypt but back to the Promised Land: "Then the Lord your God will turn your captivity and take you back in love. 2009 10:23:53] page_22 < previous page page_22 next page > Page 22 God has scattered you" (Deut. 30:3). Restoration, not blind repetition, was the proper direction for history to take, a linear route that ended in Zion and that depended entirely on man's contractual agreement with God.

Recognizing this, the rabbis in the geonic period (ca. 21 Third, as the public reading itself became a central ritual act, the interpretation of Scripture in the rabbinic sermon became a major creative outlet. The ongoing embellishment of the Torah became the province not of the select few but of the entire people. Finally, the introduction of haftaroth encouraged the panchronistic reading of Scripture: there is no "before" and "after" in the Torah (B. Pesahim 6b and elsewhere); all parts of it interpenetrate.

If this grandiose theme seems rather at odds with its modest desert setting, it was because the curses owed their final redaction to a period after the catastrophic fall of Judah, when the exiles desperately needed to hear that just as the biblical threats had been fulfilled, so too would the promised restoration. 10 There was an extraordinary tension at work here between the linear, God-centered approach and the mythic cycles of the gods; but with the destruction and exile, as the examples of Lamentations and the Tokheha have shown, the Sinaitic, historicist world view came to its full power.

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Against the Apocalypse: Responses to Catastrophe in Modern Jewish Culture (Judaic Traditions in Literature, Music, and Art) by David Roskies


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