The Pagan Rabbi Essay

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Brent has a Ph.D. in American culture, specializing in cinema studies, from the University of Michigan. She is a freelance writer and teaches courses in American cinema. In the following essay, Brent discusses the Jewish theological texts referred to in this story.

Critics have noted that Cynthia Ozick's stories are difficult. This assessment is in part due to the erudite character of Ozick's literary style, which makes reference to literary, philosophical, and theological texts not necessarily familiar to the reader. In particular, there are many references to elements of religious doctrine, ritual, and observance practices specific to Judaism. The following essay provides a brief gloss of the key texts of Jewish theology referred to in "The Pagan Rabbi," and their significance to the story.

The narrator mentions that Isaac Kornfeld, the thirty-six year old rabbi whose suicide initiates the story, is a professor of Mishnaic history, who...

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This section contains 1,896 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Pagan Rabbi Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
The Pagan Rabbi from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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