Ayelet Ahavim: Iyunim Be-Khokhmat Ha-Ahava (Beloved Doe: Studies in the Wisdom of Love)

By Newman, Zelda Kahan | Shofar, Winter 2006 | Go to article overview

Ayelet Ahavim: Iyunim Be-Khokhmat Ha-Ahava (Beloved Doe: Studies in the Wisdom of Love)


Newman, Zelda Kahan, Shofar


Ayelet Ahavim: Iyunim Be-Khokhmat Ha-Ahava (Beloved Doe: Studies in the Wisdom of Love), by Naftali Rotenberg. Sifrei Hemed Series. Tel Aviv, Yediot Aharonot, 2004.

Who can resist a scholarly book that trumpets the wisdom of love in Jewish sources? The name beckons and promises much. Unfortunately the book does not fully deliver on its promise.

To be entirely fair, the book's subtitle, "Studies in the Wisdom of Love," hints at its major problem. This is not a book whose parts cohere; it is a potpourri of different essays, sometimes loosely, sometimes not at all, interconnected.

What's more, there is repetition even within each of the essays. While it may be true that a good formula for a speaker is: tell them what you're about to say, say it, then tell them what you've told them, the written medium has no need for so much repetition. A clear exposition is all that's needed. If the reader wants to review the material, she can always flip the pages and reread from the start.

The book has five self-contained sections: 1) Androgyny: Unity, Separation, Passion and Unity (the repetition is in the original Hebrew); 2) a sketch of the scholar of love; 3) the scholar of unfulfilled love: studies on Yehuda Abarbanel's "Talks of Love"; 4) Written on Men by Men: Feminist Revolution and Innovation in the Canonical Sources; and 5) Contrast and Harmony in Partners: On Spirituality and Asceticism. Section One is a careful reading of the Biblical creation story and a comparison of the primal androgynous creature as it is described in Plato's work, and the primal androgynous creature as it is described in rabbinic lore. Section Two is a selection of stories about R. Akiva, his love for the women in his life, his love for people, and his love for God. Section Three is an overview of a forgotten philosophical treatise on love written by Yehuda Abarbanel (son of the noted biblical commentator). Section Four is an apologia for (seeming) rabbinic misogyny, while section five is a discussion of the (seeming) dichotomy between spirituality and carnal love.

Of these sections, the least interesting is section three. Yehuda Abarbanel's treatise on love has been justifiably neglected by history. It is not original and not especially illuminating. It merits an article in a scholarly journal, but no more than that.

Sections Four and Five are weighty topics, each of them worthy of a book unto itself. The subtitle of Section Four suggests a possible foray into the laws of marriage and divorce, a discussion of levirate marriage or perhaps a discussion of the laws of "nida"-the cycle of female purity and impurity. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Ayelet Ahavim: Iyunim Be-Khokhmat Ha-Ahava (Beloved Doe: Studies in the Wisdom of Love)
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.