Parables in Midrash: Narrative and Exegesis in Rabbinic Literature

Parables in Midrash: Narrative and Exegesis in Rabbinic Literature

by David Stern
     
 

ISBN-10: 0674654471

ISBN-13: 9780674654471

Pub. Date: 11/28/1991

Publisher: Harvard University Press

David Stern shows how the parable or mashal-the most distinctive type of narrative in midrash-was composed, how its symbolism works, and how it serves to convey the ideological convictions of the rabbis. He describes its relation to similar tales in other literatures, including the parables of Jesus in the New Testament and kabbalistic parables. Through its innovative…  See more details below

Overview

David Stern shows how the parable or mashal-the most distinctive type of narrative in midrash-was composed, how its symbolism works, and how it serves to convey the ideological convictions of the rabbis. He describes its relation to similar tales in other literatures, including the parables of Jesus in the New Testament and kabbalistic parables. Through its innovative approach to midrash, this study reaches beyond its particular subject, and will appeal to all readers interested in narrative and religion.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674654471
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Publication date:
11/28/1991
Pages:
364
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.53(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Abbreviations

Note on Translations and Transliterations

Introduction

1. Composition and Exegesis

The Rabbinic Parable

Mashal, Parable, and Allegory

Mashal and Ma'aseh

The Origins of the Nimshal

The King-Mashal

Stereotyping

Eikhah Rabhah 4.11

The Mashal as Traditional Literature

From Narrative to Exegesis

The Mashal and Midrashic Hermeneutics

2. Rhetoric

The Occasions of the Mashal

Three Models for the Mashal

Meshalim of Praise and Blame

Eikhah Rabbah 3.21

3. Poetics

Theorizing Midrash

Narrative or Exegesis?

Narrative Convention and Exegetical Novelty

Gaps, Ambiguities, and Narrative Conceits

Point of View and Authorial Presence

The Implied Interpreter

Characterization

Anthropomorphism

4. Thematics

Apologetics

Polemics

Eulogy and Consolation

Complaint

Regret and Warning

5. The Mashal in Context

The Problem of Context in Midrash

The Mashal and the Homily

The Mashal and the Petihta

The Mashal and the Aggadic Narrative

The Mashal and the Exegetical Enumeration

Series of Meshalim

The Mashal in Midrash

6. The Mashal in Hebrew Literature

From the Ancient Near East to Late Antiquity

The Parables in the Synoptic Gospels

From the Tannaim to the Amoraim

Tanna de-Bei Eliyahu

Sefer Habahir

Maimonides and Other Philosophers

The Zohar and Other Mystical Texts

Modern Hebrew Literature

Appendix A: Nonparabolic Narratives in Rabbinic Literature

Appendix B: Hebrew Texts of the Meshalim from Eikhah Rabbah

Notes

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