Abstract

This article uses a performance studies methodology to examine the transformation of the human body in sixteenth-century Safed School Kabbalah, focusing on practices described in Moshe Cordovero's Tomer Devorah and Sefer Gerushin, and Yosef Caro's Maggid Mesharim. It is argued that the topos of exile is key to the construction and purpose of these rituals: by enacting the conditions of exile that they wished to change, participants enable a ritual transformation of the body which in turn enables amelioration of the condition of exile. The result of these practices is a new theodicy, attributing new meaning to human suffering.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1940-5111
Print ISSN
1556-8547
Pages
pp. 131-163
Launched on MUSE
2012-11-10
Open Access
No
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