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Another Inteview with Joseph Cedar

Tablet has an interview with Joseph Cedar, the director of Footnote. I especially liked this paragraph, it oozes with things that many scholars of Talmud love to argue about. Maybe Cedar should participate in the next Book Club at the Talmud Blog?

Why did you set Footnote in the Talmud department of Hebrew University?

The Talmud department is an extreme version of other departments. I like the tension that exists there. No one compromises anything for anything. I spent a few months meeting a Talmud professor regularly once a week, going over different issues that exist in the department, generational conflicts, the history of the department, and in the field of Talmud study. One of the questions that interests me is whether the Talmud was edited after it was a written text or on oral deliverance? In other words, when was it first written down, before or after it was edited? The written word is inflexible, while oral tradition allows for a lot of flexibility. When we lost the flexibility is a question that is important to me in my life. I feel closer to the oral world than the written world.

One Response to “Another Inteview with Joseph Cedar”

  1. 1

    Very interesting article, indeed. I like the fact that he specifically asked not to be labeled as “orthodox Jew” because it has connotations that don’t define him. I think many thinking orthodox Jews feel the same. Orthodox is a good shorthand way of describing someone observant of Judaism in a recognized manner, but people should realize that there is no real “orthodoxy” among many orthodox Jews.

    What do you think he meant in saying he was afraid he might be jeolous of his son? That struck me as odd. I did not yet see the film and intend to, but I know what it’s about, and still – what kind of a father would begrudge his own son’s success?




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