Trim: 6½ x 9½
978-0-7391-4200-4 • Hardback • October 2009 • $126.00 • (£97.00)
978-0-7391-4202-8 • eBook • October 2009 • $119.50 • (£88.00)
Paul Socken is the founder of the Jewish Studies program at the University of Waterloo. He has been a professor of French literature there since 1973. He is the author of nine books and many scholarly articles.
Chapter 1 Talmud Introduction
Part 2 Part I: Women's Voices
Chapter 3 Chapter 1: Why Study Talmud in the 21st Century: The View from a Large Public University; Or, Studying Talmud as a Critical Thinker
Chapter 4 Chapter 2: Female Alterity and Divine Compassion: Reading the Talmud from the Perspective of Gender
Chapter 5 Chapter 3: Ancient Voices
Chapter 6 Chapter 4: Talmud Study as a Religious Practice
Chapter 7 Chapter 5: An Opened Book: Talmud Study by Women in the 21st Century
Part 8 Part II: Teaching Talmud
Chapter 9 Chapter 6: The Dialectics of the Divine Commanding Voice: Values, Meaning and Culture in the Talmud
Chapter 10 Chapter 7: "Why Study Talmud in the Twenty-First Century?"
Part 11 Part III: Academics Respond
Chapter 12 Chapter 8: The Meaning and Purpose of Contemporary Talmud Study
Chapter 13 Chapter 9: Why Study Talmud?*
Chapter 14 Chapter 10: Why Study Talmud: Wellsprings of Torah and the Individual Soul
Chapter 15 Chapter 11: Why I Study Talmud
Chapter 16 Chapter 12: The Meaning and Significance of New Talmudic Insights
Chapter 17 Chapter 13: Talmudic Stories and their Rewards
Chapter 18 Chapter 14: The Shiva
Chapter 19 Chapter 15: Engaging Rabbinic Literature: Four Texts
Part 20 Part IV: A Philosopher's Approach
Chapter 21 Chapter 16: The Talmud as a Source for Philosophical Reflection
Paul Socken has assembled a formidable group of Talmudic scholars in this important volume. The vastly different backgrounds of the contributors are moved into the foreground by the question he poses to them, asking them to account for their commitment to the Talmud. Thus he manages to produce an interesting and insightful choir of voices that are by turns deeply moving, contemplative, and humorous. The Talmud once again acquires a new face, and hence is carried forth into the twenty-first century with new excitement.
— Charlotte E. Fonrobert, Stanford University
Rather than writing programmatic essays about why everyone should study Talmud, this group of sixteen leading Talmudists from a broad range of backgrounds has taken up the more modest goal of explaining why they personally study Talmud. Although each writer speaks individually, when taken together as a group, certain common themes emerge that can add up to something of a programmatic treatment…. The scholarly, Jewish, and general reading communities owe Socken a great debt of gratitude for collecting these essays. The authors have provided us many profound reasons to continue, or perhaps begin, experiencing the joy of studying Talmud.
— Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal Of Jewish Studies