Jews and Judaism in the Middle Ages

Jews and Judaism in the Middle Ages

by Theodore L. Steinberg
     
 

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Theodore L. Steinberg illuminates many aspects of medieval Jewish life, not as historical curiosities but as living history. He follows two major themes - the survival and accomplishment of Judaism in a world that became increasingly hostile, and the survival of rabbinic Judaism - but he also attempts to capture what life might have been like for Jewish men and women… See more details below

Overview

Theodore L. Steinberg illuminates many aspects of medieval Jewish life, not as historical curiosities but as living history. He follows two major themes - the survival and accomplishment of Judaism in a world that became increasingly hostile, and the survival of rabbinic Judaism - but he also attempts to capture what life might have been like for Jewish men and women as they went about their ordinary activities.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

Steinberg (English, SUNY at Fredonia; Reading the Middle Ages) presents a well-researched yet highly accessible overview of medieval Jewry that takes neither a predominantly Western Christian approach to medieval history nor one limited to Hebrew-speaking audiences. Steinberg bridges the gap between works by medieval historians possessing a deep knowledge of the period but having almost no knowledge of the unique role and contributions of Jews during the era, and works by Jewish scholars presuming in the reader a prior knowledge of Jewish identity, history, culture, and language. He clears up many misconceptions along the way, e.g., that "Jewish life in the Middle Ages was a succession of horrors," arguing that an overemphasis on Jewish suffering has left scholars with a distorted picture of Jewish history. He also highlights major contributions from Jewish philosophers and scholars of the period that culminated in the greatest achievement of the era, the rise of Rabbinic Judaism. Scholarly yet highly accessible, this book fills a significant gap in the literature of the field and is recommended for all academic and most public libraries.
—Brian Greene

From the Publisher
"[A] well-researched yet highly accessible overview of medieval Jewry that takes neither a predominantly Western Christian approach to medieval history nor one limited to Hebrew-speaking audiences. Steinberg bridges the gap between works by medieval historians possessing a deep knowledge of the period but having almost no knowledge of the unique role and contributions of Jews during the era, and works by Jewish scholars presuming in the reader a prior knowledge of Jewish identity, history, culture, and language….Scholarly yet highly accessible, this book fills a significant gap in the literature of the field and is recommended for all academic and most public libraries."

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Library Journal

"Steinberg (English, SUNY Fredonia) argues that Jewish perspectives are crucial to understanding medieval life, literature, and culture….Accessible style and frequent reference to anthologies and seminal studies in English recommend the book for medievalists and generalists without Jewish studies training. Recommended."

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Choice

"Steinberg offers an accessible and lively history of the Jewish experience in the Middle Ages for both scholars and non-scholars while also providing insight into Christianity and Islam by comparing and contrasting the three major Abrahamic faiths of the medieval world. His extenisve citations encourage further exploration for readers interested in pursuing the subject."

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MultiCultural Review

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780313049378
Publisher:
ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
Publication date:
12/30/2007
Series:
Praeger Series on the Middle Ages
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
2 MB

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