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Jewish Choices, Jewish Voices


Edited by Rabbi Elliot N. Dorff and Louis E. Newman

Publication Year: 2008

What are our obligations and rights to our own bodies? What does Judaism say about tattoos? Piercings? About our obligations to exercise and eat properly? What about smoking? Alcohol? Recreational drugs? Who owns our organs? What about our eggs and sperm? If resources are limited, whose body comes first and how do we decide? Why do so many young Jews suffer from eating disorders? Each volume in this series presents traditional and contemporary sources on specific topics, followed by hypothetical cases and study questions to provoke discussion. Supplementing these are brief essays written by a diverse group -- political figures and journalists, business professionals and authors, scholars and artists, young voices and old, traditional believers and iconoclasts. As a conclusion, Dorff and Newman present their own reflections, providing a counterpoint to the contributors' perspectives. These voices from the Jewish tradition and today's Jewish community give us new questions and perspectives to think about and encourage us to consider our moral choices in a new light.

Published by: Jewish Publication Society

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. vii

No series of books such as this comes about without the creative energy and support of many individuals. We wish to thank, first and foremost, Ellen Frankel, editor-in-chief of The Jewish Publication Society, for her vision in first conceiving of this series, and her willingness to entrust it to our editorship. Her wise and patient guidance throughout the process...

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Description of the Jewish Choices, Jewish Voices Series

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pp. ix-x

This series is intended to provide a forum for discussion of some of the most critical moral issues of our time. Because the Jewish tradition is rich in moral experience and insights, each volume includes Jewish materials from ancient, medieval, and modern sources. And because the Jewish tradition, from its very beginnings, is multivocal, the sources presented...

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Introduction: Body

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pp. xi-xvii

THE TOPIC of this volume, the body, might seem as objective as any topic can be. After all, biologists can describe the features of the human species and the ways they distinguish humans from nonhumans quite precisely. Moreover, researchers can describe typical patterns of development from birth to death. There is a range of what are considered...

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pp. 3-26

ABIGAIL, WHO is 30 years old, is employed as a sales representative for a pharmaceutical company, and her skills make her a likely candidate for a senior sales position, giving her larger accounts. She is, however, 50 pounds over her ideal weight. She has tried to lose weight a number of times, but has proven unable to do so. Her...

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pp. 29-104

EVER SINCE the epochal work of Darwin, there has been an ongoing and often heated debate of creation vs. evolution. The concept of a Creator is not within the scientific realm; hence the question of whence came the primordial energy that resulted in the Big Bang is unanswerable. It might seem that the advocates of each position, for all their...

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pp. 107-118

WE ARE all embodied creatures. Our lives, our sense of self, and our experience of the world—all are shaped in myriad ways by the fact that we have bodies. This much is certain, whatever else we may believe about the things that define us as human beings. Our personalities, our spirits or souls, our imagination, and our thought processes—all...


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pp. 119-121

Suggestions for Further Reading

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pp. 122-128

Editors and Contributors

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pp. 129-131


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pp. 132-134

E-ISBN-13: 9780827610408
Print-ISBN-13: 9780827608603

Publication Year: 2008