The Shaping Influence of Oral Tradition
By (author) Elizabeth Shanks Alexander
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Transmitting Mishnah by Elizabeth Shanks Alexander
Book DescriptionDeparting from the conventional view of mishnaic transmission as mindless rote memorisation, Transmitting Mishnah, first published in 2006, reveals how multifaceted the process of passing on oral tradition was in antiquity. Taking advantage of the burgeoning field of orality studies, Elizabeth Shanks Alexander has developed a model of transmission that is both active and constructive. Proceeding by means of intensive readings of passages from tractate Shevuot and its Talmudic commentaries, Alexander alerts us to the fact that transmitters and handlers of mishnaic text crafted both the vagaries of expression and its received meanings. She illustrates how the authority of the Mishnah grew as the result of the sustained attention of a devoted community of readers and students. She also identifies the study practices and habits of analysis that were cultivated by oral performance and shows how they were passed on in tandem with the verbal contents of the Mishnah, thereby influencing how the text was received and understood.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780521857505
(216mm x 138mm x 19mm)
Imprint: Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publish Date: 31-Jul-2006
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Elizabeth Shanks Alexander
Gender and Timebound Commandments in Judaism, Paperback (February 2015)
This book examines a key tradition in Judaism - the rule that exempts women from 'timebound, positive commandments' - which has served for centuries.
Transmitting Mishnah, Paperback (March 2009)» View all books by Elizabeth Shanks Alexander
Transmitting Mishnah, first published in 2006, reveals how multifaceted the process of passing on oral tradition was in antiquity.
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Author Biography - Elizabeth Shanks Alexander
Elizabeth Shanks Alexander received her Ph.D. from Yale University in 1998. She has taught at Haverford College, Smith College and is currently an Assistant Professor at the University of Virginia. She received an NEH summer grant to work on this book.
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