Publication Year: 2013
Jonathan Boyarin explores a wide range of scholarship in Jewish studies to argue instead that Jewish family forms and ideologies have varied greatly throughout the times and places where Jewish families have found themselves. He considers a range of family configurations from biblical times to the twenty-first century, including strictly Orthodox communities and new forms of family, including same-sex parents. The book shows the vast canvas of history and culture as well as the social pressures and strategies that have helped shape Jewish families, and suggests productive ways to think about possible futures for Jewish family forms.
Published by: Rutgers University Press
Title Page, Copyright Page
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The Rutgers book series Key Words in Jewish Studies seeks to introducestudents and scholars alike to vigorous developments in the field byexploring its terms. These words and phrases reference important con-cepts, issues, practices, events, and circumstances. But terms also refer tostandards, even to preconditions; they patrol the boundaries of the field of...
Preface: Doing the Jewish Family
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Several years ago, when Andy Bush (one of the coeditors of this series and the author of its keynote volume) told me about Key Words in Jewish Studies, I responded immediately that if I ever got up thecourage to write a volume for the series, it would be on the Jewish family. (And if those weren?t my exact words, please let me pretend ...
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We usually think we know what families are. After all, for better and forworse, we all grow up in one, and even in the rare case that one of us hasn?t, we (and she) generally assume that we know what she missed: amale father, a female mother, a sibling or more of assorted sexes and genders.1 When we?re being a bit more reflective, we further specify this...
1: Terms of Debate
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Glance back, for a moment, to the epigraph to this book?the first quotation from the Tractate Sanhedrin of the Babylonian Talmud aboutthe creation of the human in the singular. I cited it there as a ?quote with-out comment,? figuring that it could stand on its own as testimony toancient recognition that families don?t always work the way they?re ...
2: State of the Question
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In the aftermath of the Nazi genocide, the Yiddish poet Moshe Szulsztejnwrote: ?Es veln nisht feln/di nemen nokh vemen [There will be no lack/Of those to name after].? This deceptively simple couplet?da DA da da DAda/da DA da da DA da?is a reminder that for some time to come at least,Jewish generations will have been depleted, rather than perpetuated?...
3: In a New Key
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This is the last chapter, but only of this book: its goal is to make youwonder, learn more, and perhaps even think of doing research like thescholars you?ve been meeting in these pages. To cite what is admittedlyquite an ?un-Jewish? image, it?s just too tempting to say that this chaptercannot help but be Janus-faced, looking simultaneously toward the future...
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About the Author
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...farmers whose ancestors were Russian and Lithuanian Jews. His spouse,Elissa Sampson, stems from Galician and Sephardi Jewish families. TheyJonathan?s writings focus on topics such as Yiddish culture, the politicsof memory, cultures in Diaspora, and the transformation of the JewishLower East Side. Among his books are Storm from Paradise: The Politics of...
Page Count: 206
Publication Year: 2013
Volume Title: 4
Series Title: Key Words in Jewish Studies
Series Editor Byline: Edited by Deborah Dash Moore, MacDonald Moore, Andrew Bush