Menachem Mendel

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What about the Talmudic Period?

The journal Zion has recently published an issue devoted to the study of Jewish history in Israel. It includes a number of very interesting historiographical studies by a number of scholars about how Israeli scholarship on certain historical periods has changed (or maybe not) over the years. One thing that I noticed was that there was no article about the Talmudic Period (or whatever you want to call it). There is an article about Bar-Kochba and then it jumps to the Middle Ages. To fill the void, I would suggest the article by Seth Schwartz, “Historiography on the Jews in the ‘Talmudic Period’: 70-640 CE,” in the very good collection The Oxford Handbook of Jewish Studies. Much of the chapter can be read here. Schwartz’s chapter deals with the study of history and not of Talmudic literature. For that question, see the chapter by Catherine Hezser, “Classical Rabbinic Literature,” in the above mentioned book. It can be found here. Also see the collection The State of Jewish Studies. Although a bit outdated, it contains some very good chapters, including one by Baruch Bokser, “Talmudic Studies.”

One Response to “What about the Talmudic Period?”

  1. 1

    This echoes Neusner’s criticism of Zion from 25 years ago which he has republished several times.




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