Jewish Preaching, 1200-1800

An Anthology

Marc Saperstein

View Inside Price: $36.00


July 29, 1992
483 pages, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4
ISBN: 9780300052633
Paper

Also Available in:
Cloth

This anthology of largely unknown medieval and early modern Jewish sermons provides an introduction to a neglected area of Jewish creativity, one that gives insights into the central intellectual issues, spiritual movements, and communal centers during six critical centuries of Jewish experience. The sermons, presented here in their entirety, have been translated, annotated, and introduced by Marc Saperstein, who also provides a discussion of the historical background of the sermons, their context, and their relationship to Hebrew literature.

"A scholarly masterpiece and an intellectual tour de force that must be read by anybody with a serious interest in Jewish studies or the art of preaching."—Howard Adelman, Shofar

"This splendid and interesting collection, a description true of all the Yale Judaica, is richly documented."—Thomas L. Shaffer, Christian Legal Society Quarterly

"A work of profound scholarship, it is also a pleasure to read."—Choice

"Jewish Preaching offers the reader an exceptional overview of many different and fascinating aspects of Jewish history, culture and theology."—Yaakov Ort, Wellsprings

"Marc Saperstein's careful and detailed translations and annotations, and his cogent introductory essay, are examples of scholarship at its highest level, and should serve to secure the place of this body of literature in the field of Jewish studies."—Present Tense/Joel H. Caviour Literary Award, 1990

"A goundbreaking work of exquisite scholarship that truly points the way for others to follow."—David E. Fass, American Rabbi

Winner of the 1990 National Jewish Book Award in the cateogry of Jewish Thought given by the Jewish Book Council

"A very learned book reflecting enormous scholarship on the part of a wise author. It was a pleasure to read."—Gerson D. Cohen, chancellor emeritus, Jewish Theological Seminary of America

"Reading and discerning the genius of these rabbinical sermons can assist one who seeks to be a more effective communicator of the Gospel. . . . Treat yourself to a potpourri of sermons that may well trigger your own creativity, enabling more effective preaching."—Vern Vander Zee, Calvin Theological Journal

"A work of profound scholarship, it is also a pleasure to read."—Choice

"Saperstein’s work demonstrates that Jewish preaching was alive in much later centuries. His work deserves its rightful place next to Zunz’s. A work of profound scholarship, it is also a pleasure to read."—Choice

"Most of the sixteen sermons in Rabbi Saperstein’s selection have not been previously published, and almost none of them have been published in English. . . . This splendid and interesting collection, a description true of all the Yale Judaica, is richly documented."—Thomas L. Shaffer, Christian Legal Society Quarterly

"A major historical and analytical survey of the subject coupled with a rich selection of annotated textual examples from medieval to early modern times. . . . This book is a welcome and worthy addition to the Yale Judaica Series."—Norman A. Stillman, Journal of the American Academy of Religion

"Marc Saperstein’s careful and detailed translations and annotations, and his cogent introductory essay, are examples of scholarship at its highest level, and should serve to secure the place of this body of literature in the field of Jewish studies."—Present Tense/Joel H. Caviour Literary Award, 1990



"This anthology of largely unknown medieval and early modern Jewish sermons will be an important resource for several different audiences. For scholars in Jewish studies, it provides an introduction to a neglected area of Jewish creativity, one that gives insights into the central intellectual issues, spiritual movements, and communal centers during six critical centuries of Jewish experience. To scholars of Christian preaching, it offers for the first time relevant comparisons between the preaching traditions of the two religions. For rabbis, the book illuminates how predecessors molded sacred texts to address the intellectual, social, and spiritual problems of their own time. . . . The book also includes a long and fascinating introductory essay by Saperstein [which] discusses the context of the sermons."—Shofar

"Professor Saperstein has produced a scholarly masterpiece and an intellectual tour de force that must be read by anybody with a serious interest in Jewish studies or the art of preaching. His introduction, virtually a monograph itself, is an overview of the genre and the relationship between the study of sermons and Jewish history. The main part of the book consists of sixteen medieval and early-modern sermons that Saperstein selected, edited, translated, introduced, and annotated. . . . The book also contains excellent bibliographies of Jewish sermons, both printed and in manuscript, secondary works on Jewish preaching, important literature on Christian preaching, a guide to all scriptural and rabbinic passages cited in the book, and a detailed . . . index. To appreciate the importance of Jewish Preaching, it must be realized that the written versions of Jewish sermons preached during the period 1200-1800 are not a very accessible genre. . . . Therefore, Saperstein’s notes are one of the most important features of Jewish Preaching. . . . [His] many gifts as a scholar and translator have made [these] sermons comprehensible to us."—Howard Adelman, Shofar

"An important and informative book, one which adds a new dimension to general knowledge about medieval Jews but which is also useful to specialists on particular topics or periods. . . . This is one of the most important books to come out in the Yale Judaica Series in many years, and . . . the author is to be congratulated."—Norman Roth, Speculum—A Journal of Medieval Studies

"[Saperstein’s] anthology, based on extensive research in primary sources, presents English translations of sixteen Jewish sermons preached from the thirteenth to the eighteenth centuries. They include writings from Spain, Italy, Turkey, Holland, Poland, France, England, and Bohemia."—Theology Digest

"Jewish Preaching offers the reader an exceptional overview of many different and fascinating aspects of Jewish history, culture and theology."—Yakov Ort, Wellsprings

Winner of the Jewish Book Council’s 1990 Jewish Book Award for Jewish Thought
 
 

Winner of the 1989 Joel H. Cavoir Literary Award awarded by Present Tense magazine.
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