By Michael A. Meyer, David N. Myers (eds.)

Although the tips of "tradition" and "modernity" could seem to be without delay antagonistic, David Ellenson, a number one modern student of recent Jewish inspiration, understood that those recommendations may also take pleasure in a extra fluid dating. In honor of Ellenson, editors Michael A. Meyer and David N. Myers have collected participants for Between Jewish culture and Modernity: Rethinking an previous Opposition to ascertain the diversifications and variations of those intertwined different types of Jewish expression. Contributions draw from a number disciplines and scholarly pursuits and range in topic from the theological to the liturgical, sociological, and literary. The geographic and historic concentration of the quantity is at the usa and the kingdom of Israel, either one of which were significant websites of inquiry in Ellenson's work.

In twenty-one essays, members show that modernity didn't easily substitute culture in Judaism, yet fairly entered right into a number of relationships with it: adopting or adapting yes parts, repossessing rituals that had as soon as been deserted, or being affected by its carrying on with impact. In 4 parts-Law, Ritual, idea, and Culture-contributors discover various topics, together with the position of reform in Israeli Orthodoxy, traditions of twentieth-century bar/bat mitzvah, end-of-life ethics, tensions among Zionism and American Jewry, and the increase of a Nineteen Sixties big apple Jewish counterculture. An introductory essay additionally provides an appreciation of Ellenson's scholarly contribution.

Bringing jointly top Jewish historians, anthropologists, sociologists, philosophers and liturgists, Between Jewish culture and Modernity offers a collective view of a traditionally and culturally major problem that would be of curiosity to Jewish students of many disciplines.

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Extra resources for Between Jewish Tradition and Modernity: Rethinking an Old Opposition, Essays in Honor of David Ellenson

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That choice itself reflects in a most positive way the evolving nature of Reform Judaism, now able to interact in a more relaxed and balanced way with aspects of traditional Judaism against which it earlier vigorously contested. The intersection of halakhah, conversion to Judaism, and Sephardic rabbinical creativity in modern times is itself an expression of interaction between tradition and modernity. Before modernity, intermarriage was very limited, and conversion to Judaism entailed great risks.

47b. The words “Thus he will not eat the [nonkosher] flesh of animals who died of natural causes” allude to the Talmudic explanation for the Torah’s permitting an Israelite warrior to marry a non-Israelite captive of war: “The Torah took the evil inclination into account—better that Israel should eat the flesh of animals who had been on the verge of death when [properly] slaughtered rather than eat the flesh of animals who died of natural causes” (bKiddushin 21b). This is an allegorical formulation of the principle of preferring the lesser evil.

For a survey and analysis of halakhic positions from antiquity to the present regarding conversion for nonreligious reasons, see: Avi Sagi and Zvi Zohar, Transforming Identity (London, 2007), 9–103.  Mordekhai ben Hillel Hacohen (c. 1250–98) was a leading Ashkenazic halakhic scholar. His position is discussed in Sagi and Zohar, Transforming Identity, 19–21. v. lo bi’mei David.   bShabbat 31a; bMenahot 44a.  This paragraph is quoted in Ellenson and Gordis, Pledges of Jewish Allegiance, 130–31.

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