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Samuel ben hūofni Gaon was head of the Yeshiva of Sura in Baghdad during the cultural renaissance which characterized the Buyid period. His writings reflect the impact of Arabic literature on Jewish intellectuals at this time.
The first part of this volume presents the known details of his life and extensive writings and describes the dynamics of contemporary, tenth-century Jewish culture: the decline and temporary restoration of the yeshivot and the intellectual activity outside of them. Additionally, some of the basic concepts of his thought, strongly influenced by Mu‘tazilite Kalām, are explained.
The book provides the Judeo-Arabic text and annotated English translation of two of his works on legal theory, his Treatise on the Commandments and Ten Questions, reconstructed from manuscript fragments from the Cairo Geniza.
|Symbols and Method Used in Transcription and Translation|
|1||Samuel ben Hofni Gaon: His Life and Works||1|
|2||Samuel ben Hofni and Arabic Culture: An Intellectual Portrait||37|
|3||The Yeshivot in Baghdad: Decline and Temporary Restoration||69|
|4||Jewish Culture Outside the Yeshivot||99|
|5||Central Concepts and Issues: Reason, Obligation, Universalism and Tradition||143|
|6||Treatise on the Commandments: Introduction and Annotated Translation||167|
|7||Ten Questions: Introduction and Annotated Translation||237|