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Blood for ThoughtThe Reinvention of Sacrifice in Early Rabbinic Literature$
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Mira Balberg

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780520295926

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520295926.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
Blood for Thought

Mira Balberg

University of California Press

The introduction explores the prevalent views on the rabbis’ approach to sacrifices, and explains how this book diverges from these approaches. It puts forth the idea that like biblical authors that preceded them, the rabbis weave a vision of sacrifice from a combination of imagination and interpretation, memory and hope, necessity and fantasy, and that their ritual-legal corpus is a window through which we can explore the cultural and intellectual significance of this vision. In addition, the introduction sets the theoretical and methodological prisms through which sacrifice as a religious phenomenon will be explored in the book, in dialogue with various classical and contemporary works on the topic. It concludes with a detailed outline of the book’s structure and arguments.

Keywords:   Jerusalem Temple, Mishnah, Ritual theory, Sacrifice in Judaism, Qodashim, 70 C.E

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