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By Alan Mintz

A learn of the heritage of Jewish exiles and genocide, and the literary expressions that try to make feel of those catastrophes. during this e-book Alan Mintz devotes a bankruptcy every one to chose catastrophic occasions and the literary reaction to them: for instance, the destruction of the 1st Temple in 587 B.B.E. and the ensuing biblical literature; the bloodbath of the Rhineland Jewish group through the Crusades in 1096 and synagogue poetry; and the pogroms in Russia and smooth Hebrew poetry. those past responses are then in comparison to the therapy of the Holocaust within the Hebrew literature of the kingdom of Israel with distinctive cognizance given to the works of Uri Zvi Greenberg and Aharon Appelfeld.

Deeply felt and hugely unique, Hurban is a revealing learn of an incredibly wealthy literature within the context of an necessarily tragic history.

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Extra resources for Hurban Responses to Catastrophe in Hebrew Literature

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The chapter also contains the most regular use of the dis­ tinctive kinah meter, the limping, mourning rhythm of 3 + 2 stresses per line. The chapter is also the theological nub of Lamentations. Chapter 3 divides into three roughly equal sections, panels of a great triptych. It is in the middle panel, at the center of the center of Lamentations (3: 2 1-39), . that we witness a grappling with the preeminent questions of meaning and relationship that elsewhere in the book are avoided or preempted.

The preceding lines describe a man for whom neither the past nor the future can be made to divulge the least sign of hope. Yet against the back­ ground of this degree-zero of despair, the sufferer recovers him­ self suddenly. "But this do I call to mind, / Therefore I hope," he begins and proceeds with a series of exploratory meditations that end in justifying God's ways. The suddenness of this move reveals it to be an act of will that is indeed unprepared for, in the sense that it is nourished by nothing but its own desire.

The relationship was at bottom unconditional and contained an element of b,esed, "covenant love," which insured that there would always be a rem­ nant and always a restoration. It was for this last reason that the destruction of Jerusalem by the Neo-Babylonian army of Nebuchadnezzar in 587 must be counted as a true catastrophe. The physical devastation, it is true, was enormous: the city was put to the torch and its walls leveled; King Zedekiah was blinded and led off to Babylonia in chains; military, civil, and ecclesiastical leaders were executed or de­ ported; Judah as a state was crushed forever.

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