Jewish Biblical Interpretation and Cultural Exchange
Biblical interpretation is not simply study of the Bible's
meaning. Historically, it has also served as a primary medium for
cultural and religious exchange between the great religious
traditions of the West. Focusing on moments of signal interest in
the history of Jewish, Christian, and Islamic scriptural
interpretation from the ancient, medieval, and early modern
periods, Jewish Biblical Interpretation and Cultural
Exchange offers a unique comparative perspective. Each of the
essays treats its subject in relation to the larger cultural
context and to other contemporary interpretative traditions.
Sources and authors examined in the book include late biblical and
early postbiblical compositions, rabbinic legal and homiletical
interpretation, Jerome and other early Christian exegetes, Islamic
exegesis in both the Qur'an and early Muslim tradition, medieval
Jewish and Christian exegetes, and biblical interpretation as
evidenced in early modern illustrations of biblical scenes.
The histories of Jewish, Christian, and Islamic interpretation are
presented not merely as parallel but as deeply interrelated, not
only as reacting and polemicizing against each other but often as
appropriating the tools and methods of their rival traditions.
Biblical exegesis thus emerges as a forum of active and intense
cultural exchange. The volume comes at a crucial time in the study
of Jewish relations with Christianity and Islam, and shows how
deeply connected and intertwined these three religious traditions
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