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This work analyses major transformations in Jewish life and thought: from idolatry to exclusive monotheism in the biblical age, from state-based identity to cultural nationalism in the Roman empire and, in the European diaspora, from theology to secularism and revived political nationalism in the modern period. Fundamental questions are asked about Jewish survival in a variety of topics including prophecy, Jewish law, Midrash, the Roman Jewish wars, Stoicism, secular poetry in Muslim Spain, Marx and Freud, and Hebrew literature through the ages.
DAVID ABERBACH is Associate Professor of Hebrew and Comparative Literature, McGill University, Montreal, Canada and Visiting Academic at the London School of Economics and Political Science. He has published books on three modern Hebrew writers, Mendele, Bialik and Agnon, as well as Surviving Trauma: Loss, Literature and Psychoanalysis, Imperial and Biblical Prophecy 750-500BCE, Charisma in Politics, Religion and the Media: Private Trauma, Public Ideals, and (with Moshe Aberbach) Revolutionary Hebrew: Empire and Crisis.