The Memory of the Temple and the Making of the Rabbis

The Memory of the Temple and the Making of the Rabbis
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The Memory of the Temple and the Making of the Rabbis
The Memory of the Temple and the Making of the Rabbis
Author Naftali S. Cohn
Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2013

The Memory of the Temple and the Making of the Rabbis

Reviewer Avram R. Shannon

With The Memory of the Temple and the Making of the Rabbis, Naftali Cohn has written a book that adds much to our understanding of the earliest stages of the rabbinic movement and its connection to the temple, which had defined Judaism and the covenant people for a millennium. Outside of the world of Jewish studies, Cohn's book provides a methodological framework for discussing the role that the temple and its institutions play in a wide variety of religious discourses, including Latter-day Saint discourse about scriptures and temple rituals. Cohn's book is a must-read for anyone interested in the formation of the rabbinic movement and in religious identity formation. It is also a valuable read for those interested in how the temple fits into a broader religious discourse. The reader should note that The Memory of the Temple contains some very specific and technical argumentation, but its broader point can be of real use for those interested in temple studies broadly.

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