Jewish Concepts of ScriptureA Comparative Introduction

Jewish Concepts of ScriptureA Comparative Introduction

Benjamin D. Sommer

Print publication date: 2016

ISBN: 9780814740620

Publisher: NYU Press

Abstract

What do Jews think scripture is? How do the People of the Book conceive of the Book of Books? In what ways is it authoritative? Who has the right to interpret it? Is it divinely or humanly written? And have Jews always thought about the Bible in the same way? This book traces the way some of the most important Jewish thinkers throughout history have addressed these questions from the rabbinic era through the medieval Islamic world to modern Jewish scholarship. The chapters address why different Jewish thinkers, writers, and communities have turned to the Bible—and what they expect to get from it. Ultimately, the book argues, in understanding the ways Jews construct scripture, we begin to understand the ways Jews construct themselves.