Ladino Rabbinic Literature and Ottoman Sephardic Culture (Google eBook)

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Indiana University Press, Nov 3, 2005 - History - 280 pages
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In this pathbreaking book, Matthias B. Lehmann explores Ottoman Sephardic culture in an era of change through a close study of popularized rabbinic texts written in Ladino, the vernacular language of the Ottoman Jews. This vernacular literature, standing at the crossroads of rabbinic elite and popular cultures and of Hebrew and Ladino discourses, sheds valuable light on the modernization of Sephardic Jewry in the Eastern Mediterranean in the 19th century. By helping to form a Ladino reading public and imparting shape to its values, the authors of this literature negotiated between perpetuating rabbinic tradition and addressing the challenges of modernity. The book offers close readings of works that examine issues such as social inequality, exile and diaspora, gender, secularization, and the clash between scientific and rabbinic knowledge. Ladino Rabbinic Literature and Ottoman Sephardic Culture will be welcomed by scholars of Sephardic as well as European Jewish history, culture, and religion.

  

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Contents

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
1
Historical Background
15
The Emergence of Ladino Reading
31
The Translation and Reception of Musar
51
Pasar la Hora or Meldar? Forms of Sociability
76
The Construction of the Social Order
91
The Wealthy the Poor the Learned
103
The Representation of Gender
121
The Impossible Homecoming
156
Reincarnation and the Discovery of History
173
Scientific and Rabbinic Knowledge and the Notion of Change
187
Conclusion
202
NOTES
209
BIBLIOGRAPHY
241
INDEX
257
Copyright

Understanding Exile Setting Boundaries
137

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About the author (2005)

Matthias B. Lehmann is Assistant Professor of Jewish Studies and History at Indiana University.

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