Limit search to available items
Book Cover
Author Skibell, Joseph, author.

Title Six memos from the last millennium : a novelist reads the Talmud / by Joseph Skibell
Edition First edition
Published Austin : University of Texas Press, 2016


Description 1 online resource (xxi, 240 pages)
Series Exploring jewish arts and culture
Exploring Jewish arts and culture.
Contents A novelist reads the Talmud : an introduction -- Timeline of relevant events, according to rabbinic tradition -- Memo one. Rabbi Yohanan and Rabbi Shimon Ben Lakish -- Eros and alchemy in the waters of the Jordan -- Memo two. Rabbi Shimon Bar Yohai -- Turning the hearts of fathers -- Memo three a, b, and c. Rabbi Elazar ben Rabbi Shimon, Rabbi Pinhas ben Yair, and Rabbi Judah ben Gerim -- Towards the hearts of sons -- Memo four. Rabban Gamliel II of Yavneh, Rabbi Joshua ben Hananiah, and Rabbi Eliezer ben Hyrcanus -- The gate of a broken heart -- Memo five. Rabbi Akiva, Shimon ben Azzai, Shimon ben Zoma, and Elisha ben Avuyah -- Revelation, retribution, perdition, ecstasy, and bliss : an epic canvas
Summary A thief-turned-saint, killed by an insult. A rabbi burning down his world in order to save it. A man who lost his sanity while trying to fathom the origin of the universe. A beautiful woman battling her brother's and her husband's egos to preserve their family. Stories such as these enliven the pages of the Talmud, the great repository of ancient wisdom that is one of the sacred texts of the Jewish people. Comprised of the Mishnah, the oral law of the Torah, and the Gemara, a multigenerational metacommentary on the Mishnah dating from between 3950 and 4235 (190 and 475 CE), the Talmud presents a formidable challenge to understand without scholarly training and study. But what if one approaches it as a collection of tales with surprising relevance for contemporary readers? In Six Memos from the Last Millennium, critically acclaimed novelist Joseph Skibell reads some of the Talmud's tales with a storyteller's insight, concentrating on the lives of the legendary rabbis depicted in its pages to uncover the wisdom they can still impart to our modern age. He unifies strands of stories that are scattered throughout the Talmud into coherent narratives or "memos," which he then analyzes and interprets from his perspective as a novelist. In Skibell's imaginative and personal readings, this sacred literature frequently defies our conventional notions of piety. Sometimes wild, rude, and even bawdy, these memos from the last millennium pursue a livable transcendence, a way of fusing the mundane hours of earthly life with a cosmic sense of holiness and wonder
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references
Notes Print version record
SUBJECT Talmud -- Biography
Talmud fast
Subject Tannaim -- Biography
Amoraim -- Biography
RELIGION -- Judaism -- General.
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Jewish Studies
Genre/Form Biographies
Form Electronic book
ISBN 9781477307359