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Intermarriage

Abraham Sends His Servant to Find a Wife for Isaac, then Disappears

Abraham tells his servant to go to his hometown to find a wife for Isaac. When the servant returns, he never reports back to him or introduces Rebecca to him. Why does Abraham disappear from the narrative? And, as Rebecca is his great-niece, why not send the servant to her father’s home directly?

Prof. Rabbi

David Frankel

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Jews Intermarried Not Only in Judea but Also in Babylonia

The Bible describes the shock that Ezra and Nehemiah experience upon learning that the Judean locals had married non-Judeans. And yet, from Babylonian marriage documents uncovered in cities near Babylon, we learn that intermarriage was occurring back in Babylonia as well.

Dr.

Laurie Pearce

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Erev Rav: A Mixed Multitude of Meanings

When the Israelites left Egypt, they were accompanied by an ʿerev rav (Exodus 12:38). This obscure term has been interpreted in different ways throughout two millennia of Bible interpretation, both positively and negatively, and modern scholars still debate its exact meaning. The term survives in modern Jewish discourse as a slur against other Jews.

Dr. Rabbi

David J. Zucker

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Who Is the Victim in the Dinah Story?

We cannot imagine anyone but Dinah as the victim, but does the Torah? Do the Rabbis? Understanding the story of Dinah and its reception in historical context can help us reflect on the role of women in ancient Israel and the meaning of sexual violence in a patriarchal society.

Dr.

Alison L. Joseph

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Contrasting Pictures of Intermarriage in Ruth and Nehemiah

By comparing the aggressive approach of Nehemiah towards the foreign wives of the Judahites with the positive role of Ruth as a Moabite woman who married into an Israelite family, we can attempt to uncover the core messages about Jewish identity that the two texts have in common.

Prof.

Jacob L. Wright

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Prof. Rabbi

Tamara Cohn Eskenazi

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The Dinah Story: A Missed Opportunity for Intermarriage and Conversion

An intertextual reading of the Dinah story highlights how it polemicizes against marriage with non-Israelites, even those willing to take on Israelite practices. Some rabbinic counter-readings of the text, however, express a more positive notion of incorporating converts to Judaism into the community.

Naomi Graetz

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