Eros and the Jews: From Biblical Israel to Contemporary America / Edition 1

Eros and the Jews: From Biblical Israel to Contemporary America / Edition 1

by David Biale
ISBN-10:
0520211340
ISBN-13:
9780520211346
Pub. Date:
10/03/1997
Publisher:
University of California Press
Select a Purchase Option (New Edition)
  • purchase options
    $25.76 $29.95 Save 14% Current price is $25.76, Original price is $29.95. You Save 14%.
  • purchase options
    $16.63 $29.95 Save 44% Current price is $16.63, Original price is $29.95. You Save 44%.
    icon-error
    Note: Access code and/or supplemental material are not guaranteed to be included with textbook rental or used textbook.
  • purchase options

Overview

Eros and the Jews: From Biblical Israel to Contemporary America / Edition 1

Contradictory stereotypes about Jewish sexuality pervade modern culture, from Lenny Bruce's hip eroticism to Woody Allen's little man with the big libido (and even bigger sexual neurosis). Does Judaism in fact liberate or repress sexual desire? David Biale does much more than answer that question as he traces Judaism's evolving position on sexuality, from the Bible and Talmud to Zionism up through American attitudes today. What he finds is a persistent conflict between asceticism and gratification, between procreation and pleasure.

From the period of the Talmud onward, Biale says, Jewish culture continually struggled with sexual abstinence, attempting to incorporate the virtues of celibacy, as it absorbed them from Greco-Roman and Christian cultures, within a theology of procreation. He explores both the canonical writings of male authorities and the alternative voices of women, drawing from a fascinating range of sources that includes the Book of Ruth, Yiddish literature, the memoirs of the founders of Zionism, and the films of Woody Allen.

Biale's historical reconstruction of Jewish sexuality sees the present through the past and the past through the present. He discovers an erotic tradition that is not dogmatic, but a record of real people struggling with questions that have challenged every human culture, and that have relevance for the dilemmas of both Jews and non-Jews today.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780520211346
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 10/03/1997
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 334
Product dimensions: 5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.88(d)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews