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Jewish Concepts of ScriptureA Comparative Introduction$
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Benjamin D. Sommer

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780814740620

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814740620.001.0001

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Concepts of Scripture in the Synagogue Service

Concepts of Scripture in the Synagogue Service

(p.15) Chapter 2 Concepts of Scripture in the Synagogue Service
Jewish Concepts of Scripture

Elsie Stern

NYU Press

This chapter focuses on material from the rabbinic and early medieval periods. While contemporary synagogue rituals for the reading of scripture vary widely from one another, the ritual and lectionary developments of the rabbinic period remain foundational for the ideological construction of the synagogue Bible. The chapter explains how the majority of Jews have encountered scripture primarily in synagogue—this sociological reality has important implications in understanding the Jewish scripture. If one is interested in scripture as a category of text that helps to shape a community's self-understanding and worldview, then the short list of texts which most Jews encountered in synagogue is particularly important. The remainder of the chapter looks at how synagogue scripture is distinguished from others by its discursive boundaries.

Keywords:   rabbinic periods, Jewish lectionary, contemporary synagogue, synagogue Bible, Jews, Jewish scripture

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