The “Talmud”: A Biography

We rated this book:


Generally, I love the books that are published as part of Lives of Great Religious Books; sadly, this one was my least favorite. It did not really feel like a biography of an old religious book so much as a study of how it was put together and a deep analysis of some of its passages. The Talmud is a famous Jewish book from ancient Babylonia, part commentary on the law and part scripture. It has been passed down through the generations and used by rabbis to interpret laws, suits, and other incidents. What I felt we would get, and we get it briefly, was how the book came together, how it was transmitted originally, and how it was used, changed, and viewed through its centuries of transmission. Instead, the first half of the book is mostly an analysis of some of its more iconic passages, and, unless you are really familiar with different concepts of the Jewish faith, you will feel lost. As I kept reading, I was wondering if this was a biography of a book or just a literary analysis of relevant passages that seemed to never end. Thankfully, there are good books in this series, just not this one.

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Star Count 2/5
Format Hard
Page Count 320 pages
Publisher Princeton University Press
Publish Date 2018-Apr-17
ISBN 9780691161846 Buy this Book
Issue June 2018
Category Religion


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