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In Midrash and Theory, David Stern presents an approach to midrashic literature through the prism of contemporary theory.
As midrash—the literature of classical Jewish Scriptural interpretation—has become the focus of new interest in contemporary literary circles, it has been invoked as a precursor of post-structuralist theory and criticism. At the same time, the midrashic imagination has undergone a revival in the larger Jewish community and shown itself capable of exercising a powerful influence and hold on a new type of contemporary Jewish writing. Stern examines this resurgence of fascination with ancient Jewish interpretation from the persepctive of the cultural relevance of midrash and its connection to its original historical and literary contexts.
Introduction: The Midrash-Theory Connection
Chapter 1. Midrash and Hermeneutics: Polysemy vs. Indeterminacy
Chapter 2. Forms fo Midrash I: Parables of Interpretation
Chapter 3. Forms of Midrash II: Homily and the Language of Exegesis
Chapter 4. Midrash and Theology: The Character(s) of God