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"What have I to do with Wild Animals?": Glikl Bas Leib and the Other Woman


This essay offers a reading of a captivity narrative which appears in the memoirs of Glikl Bas Leib. Glikl's understanding of cross-cultural contact is especially intriguing in light of the writer's personal background as a woman, a mother, and a Jew. As in many other Jewish discussions of "the Exotic," Glikl's story reveals Jewish-specific fantasies and anxieties, however it also reflects more general concerns, found also amongst Glikl's non-Jewish contemporaries. The essay offers a review of these concerns as they crystallize in Glikl's memoirs, in an attempt to place this text both in its Jewish and in its non-Jewish context