Jewish Rhetorics

History, Theory, Practice

Edited by Michael Bernard-Donals and Janice W. Fernheimer

Jewish Rhetorics

Edited by Michael Bernard-Donals and Janice W. Fernheimer

Distributed for Brandeis University Press

312 pages | 6 x 9
Paper $40.00 ISBN: 9781611686401 Published December 2014
This volume, the first of its kind, establishes and clarifies the significance of Jewish rhetorics as its own field and as a field within rhetoric studies. Diverse essays illuminate and complicate the editors’ definition of a Jewish rhetorical stance as allowing speakers to maintain a “resolute sense of engagement” with their fellows and their community, while also remaining aware of the dislocation from the members of those communities. Topics include the historical and theoretical foundations of Jewish rhetorics; cultural variants and modes of cultural expression; and intersections with Greco-Roman, Christian, Islamic, and contemporary rhetorical theory and practice. In addition, the contributors examine gender and Yiddish, and evaluate the actual and potential effect of Jewish rhetorics on contemporary scholarship and on the ways we understand and teach language and writing. The contributors include some of the world’s leading scholars of rhetoric, writing, and Jewish studies.
Contents
Introduction • Taking a Stance toward God: Rhetoric in the Book of Psalms—Davida Charney • The Rhetoric of Rabbinic Authority: Making the Transition from Priest to Sage—Richard Hidary • Judah Messer Leon and the Sefer Nofet Zufim: Rethinking Rhetoric Delivery in the Early Age of Print—Jim Ridolfo • “The Pretty Heiress from Our Old House": Figuring the Yiddish-Hebrew Relationship in Rhetorical Works by Itzik Manger and Ya’akov Fichman—Hannah S. Pressman • The Jewish Rhetoric of the Twentieth Century: Chaïm Perelman, Double Fidélité, and the Pre-Holocaust Roots of the New Rhetoric Project—David A. Frank • Socrates as Rabbi: The Story of the Aleph and the Alpha in a Postinformation Age—Steven B. Katz • Maimonides’s Contribution to a Theory of Self Persuasion—David Metzger • Rabbi Moses ben Nachman, Sophist?—Patricia Bizzell • Is Midrash Comics? A Fish Story about Graphic Narrative, Visual Rhetoric, and Rabbinic Hermeneutics—Susan Handelman • S. Yizhar’s Khirbet Khizeh and the Rhetoric of Conflict—Shai Ginsburg • Esther’s Book: A Rhetoric of Writing for Jewish Feminists—Susan Zaeske • “Shema Yisrael”: Listening in Judaism and What It Has to Teach Us—Joy Arbor • Simulated Shiur? Post-It Notes of an ArtScroll Amateur—Jonathan Boyarin • Of Superheroes and Synecdoche: Holocaust Exceptionalism, Race, and the Rhetoric of Jewishness in America—Jennifer Glaser • “That Ceremonious Feeling of Growing Up”: The Educational Practice of Bar Mitzvah in the Jewish Children’s Folkshul—Eli Goldblatt • Acknowledgments • Contributors • Index
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