The Horizontal Society is an exposition of rabbinic thought as exemplified by Maimonides. The thought streams of Greece, Rome, and Christendom serve as a contrast. This work is in the Hebrew rhetorical tradition of melisa. The main text in five sections-The God of Israel, The Books of Israel, The Governance of Israel, The Memory of Israel, and The Folly of Israelfocuses on these core matters. It includes numerous references to orient the reader. The mode is similar to the author's previous work, such as Golden Doves with Silver Dots: Semiotics and Textuality in Rabbinic Tradition, interacting with the latest thought from today's academy. This book illustrates the horizontal organization of the Jewish people. Other social organization is based on hierarchy. Two principles made this difference possible for Israel. First, the Hebrew Scriptures alone propose that every human being is created in the image of God.This necessitates the absolute equality of every human being. Second, the Sinai covenant establishes the Law as the supreme authority. Whereas in other societies, might is the source of authority, in Judaism authority is limited by the Law. These principles were summarized by the last Prophet of Israel: "Has not one God created us? Why do we deal treacherously…, profaning the covenant of our fathers?" (Mal 2:10). There is a subdivided bibliography of forty pages, including both Jewish and "Western" sources. The scholarly apparatus includes indices of terms, names, and subjects. There are also seventy appendices of interest to rabbinic readership.
About the Author
José Faur (PhD 1964, University of Barcelona) is Professor Emeritus, Law School, Netanya Academic College, Netanya, Israel. He was the first Jewish recipient of a doctorate from the University of Barcelona since the Expulsion in 1492. He has taught at JTS and Bar-Ilan University and published in Hebrew, Spanish, French, Italian and English. His books include: Golden Doves with Silver Dots: Semiotics and Textuality in Rabbinic Tradition (Indiana UP, 1986); In the Shadow of History: Iberian Jews and Conversos at the Dawn of Modernity (SUNY, 1992); Homo Mysticus: A Guide To Maimonides's Guide for the Perplexed (Syracuse UP, 1998).
Table of Contents
Preface. Acknowledgements. Hebrew Transliteration Table. Abbreviations. Prologue. Section 1: The God of Israel. Introductory Remarks. 1. The Book of Creation. 2. Monolingualism and the Analphabetic Mind. 3. God as a Writer. 4. Of Scribes and Analphabetic Poets. Concluding Reflections. Section 2: The Books of Israel. Introductory Remarks. 5. the Berit ('Covenant') Sinai-Moab. 6. Scripture and the Mental Law of Israel. 7. The Publication of Scripture. 8. Epistles and Memoranda. 9. Interpreting the Books of Israel. 10. Law and the Judiciary. 11. The Boundaries Derasha. Concluding Reflections. Section 3: The Governance of Israel. Introductory Remarks. 12. Of Herut. 13. Hierarchic Humanity. 14. Horizontal Man. 15. The Household of Israel. 16. Humanity before Statehood. 17. God's Territory. 18. The Three Crowns of Israel. 19. Hebrew Theocracy: Sovereignty under the Law. 20. The Crown of a Good Name. 21. Galut: Right without Might. 22. Jewish Dominion over the Land of Israel. 23. Pagan Political Thought. 24. A Perfect Tora. 25. The Five Doctrines Taught by Patriarch Abraham. 26. The Two-Realm Governance. 27. Silencing Scripture. The Road to Serfdom: Freedom without Law. 29. Paul's Theo-politics. 30. Escape From Guilt. 31. Imperial Religion. 32. The Political Dimension of Anti-Semitism. 33. Two Concepts of Human Rights. 34. Pax Romana and Pax Hebraica. 35. The Sabbath is the Lord's. 36. Separating Church from State. Concluding Reflections. Section 4: The Memory of Israel. Introductory Remarks. 37. National Memory. 38. the Matrix of Jewish Memory. 39. Walking Under the Fox's Shadow. 40. The Emergence of the Sword / Cross Axis. 41. A Crisis of Memory. 42. Unmasking Spurious Versus Israel. 43. The Publication of the Mishna. 44. Minting Tradition into Oral Law. 45. National and Vernacular Memory. 46. Melisa and the Realm of the Verisimilar. 47. Expanding National Memory. 48. Kalla and the Formation of the Babylonian Talmud. Concluding Reflections. Section 5: The Folly of Israel. Introductory Remarks. 49. Qabbala and the Conveyance of Talmudic Tradition. 50. "Little Foxes" - Rabbis without Qabbala. 51. The Day of the Willow. 52. The Genesis of Jewish Heroic Virtue. 53. Heroic Knowledge. 54. Payback Time - The Case of Catalonian Rabbis. 55."Our Lords, the Rabbis of France". 56. Fighting Assimilation?. 57. Kabbalah vs. Qabbala. 58. Cult of the Occult. 59. The Anti-Scientific Obstinancy of Maimonideans. 60. The Five Pillars of Anti-Maimonidean Kabbalah. 61 The Problem with 'Philosophy'. 62. A Reflective Response to R. Hayye Gaon's Call. 63. The Mishne Tora. 64. Hierarchic Truth. 65. Inerrant Saint. 66. Israel's Fourth Miracle. Concluding Reflections. Epilogue. Hebrew Transliteration Table. Abbreviations. 1. Vocalization of the Scroll of the Tora. 2. Hebrew 'Writing' and 'Reading'. 3. Alphabetization and Masora. 4. Precept, Monolatry, and Sanctity. 5. Defilement of the Hands. 6. 'Depositing a Text' for Publication. 7. An Academy to Police the Hebrew Language. 8. Reciting a Text for Publication. 9. Wearing Phylacteries. 10. The Autonomy of the Law. 11. Alien Cult. 12. Morasha. 13. Becoming a Single Body. 14. Gideon and Washington. 15. The Concept of Galut. 16. By Virtue of Conquest. 17. Private Property. 18. Equality Before the Law. 19. T'M. 20. Malicious Erudition. 21. Why We Should all Strive to be Illiterate. 22. Purloining an Ass for Christ: Freedom without Law. 23. Ingesting Jesus. 24. Extreme Dichotomy. 25. Erasing the Memory of 'Amaleq. 26. 'Prophets / Scribes' and the National Archives of Israel. 27.Yeshiba. 28. Perush, Be'ur and Peshat. 29. Pappus b. Judah. 30. Verus Israel? 31. Remez. 32. Qabbala and Halakha. 33. Halakha le-Moshe mi-Sinai. 34. Derekh Qesara. 35. God's Mystery. 36. Seder. 37. The Four Levels of Instruction. 38. Teaching Tora in Public. 39 Shone: Rehearsing and Conveying Halakha. 40. Megillat Setarim. 41. The Publication of Oral Texts. 42. TQN. 43. The Introduction of the Monetary System in Rabbinic Tradition. 44. Oral Law. 45. Writing the Oral Law. 46. Was there a 'Dispensaton' to Write the Oral Law? 47. Hebrew hibber and Arabi tadwin. 48. Gemara and Talmud. 49. Emora. 50. National Publication for Use in Constitutional Interpretation: the Jewish and the US Systems. 51. Tanya Kevatteh. 52. Leaning Towards the Majority. 53. Mahdora. 54. "Little Foxes" 55. Minim and Minut. 56. Tikku. 57. About "Strict Talmudists". 58. Semantic Assimilation. 59. Heroes and Heroism. 60. Hasid and Hasidut. 61. The Targum. 62. Writing a Sefer Tora. 63. The Sorrowful Scholarship of Professor Baer. 64. Medieval Jewish Prophets. 65. The Science of Necromancy. 66. The Mandate of the Jewish Court According to Ramban. 67. The Ministry of Luminous Rabbis: Unerring and Inerrable. 68. Settled Law. 69. Relying on Legal Sources and Authorities. 70. The Library of Lucena. Bibliography. Indices.