The Blasphemer in Leviticus: A Marginal Figure
Part of our spring learning series, The Space In Between: Thresholds and Borders in Jewish Life and Thought
This session is generously sponsored by Yale Asbell, JTS Trustee.
Monday, April 24, 2023
1:00–2:30 p.m. ET
With Dr. Alan Cooper, Elaine Ravich Professor of Jewish Studies, JTS
The Bible abounds with characters who transgress boundaries, for better and for worse. One of these characters who comes to a bad end is the half-Israelite, half-Egyptian blasphemer in Leviticus 24:10-16, 23. It’s clear that the Bible wants this story to show the dire consequences for blasphemy, but why is the identity of the blasphemer so specific, and how does this story relate to other laws outlined in the same chapter of the Torah? We will explore these issues with the aid of both traditional and modern critical commentary.
If you have registered for a session in this series, your registration admits you to all sessions, and you may attend as many as you’d like.
Note: The Zoom link for this session will be in the confirmation email that you will receive after you register.
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ABOUT THE SERIES
The Space In Between: Thresholds and Borders in Jewish Life and Thought
We are living in an undefined time: our daily existence is no longer dominated by the pandemic, yet neither have we settled into a new normal. This sense of being in transition—neither here nor there— can feel destabilizing; but is the time in between really temporary, or are we always living in between moments, identities, and phases of life?
In this series, JTS scholars will delve into the idea of liminality—the time or space in between—which we encounter often in Jewish ritual, identity, law, and life. Join us to consider what these many manifestations of “in-between-ness” can teach us about ourselves and about Judaism, and to explore how we might find strength and meaning in an orientation not of “either/or” but of “both/and.”