Judaism: A Very Short Introduction

by Norman Solomon

Book, 2000



Call number

200 SOL


Oxford : Oxford University Press, 2000


Norman Solomon's succinct book is an ideal introduction to Judaism as a religion and way of life. In addition to surveying the nature and development of Judaism, this Very Short Introduction outlines the basics of practical Judaism -- its festivals, prayers, customs, and various sects. Modernconcerns and debates of the Jewish people are also addressed, such as the impact of the Holocaust, the establishment of the State of Israel, the status of women, and medical and commercial ethics.

User reviews

LibraryThing member MSWallack
I decided to read this book and, while doing so, tried to read it as if I knew nothing about Judaism and was coming to the subject from the point of view of a Gentile rather than a Jew. While I felt that the author did an acceptable job of explaining some subjects, overall, I just didn't get the
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feeling that I learned what it meant to be a Jew or, maybe said different, what makes Jews "tick". The book told me quite a bit about the evolution of Judaism in post-biblical times and in the Middle Ages, but I didn't get any sense of what today's Jews believe (other than a few discussions of how the various segments of Judaism distinguish themselves from one another and a brief "throwaway" discussion of how Judaism addresses a few modern issues). Most problematic, I suppose, is that the Gentile reader who reads this book will not gain much insight into the meaning of Jewish holidays that they may encounter or some of the more simple rules upon which Jews base their lives.
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Original publication date



0192853902 / 9780192853905
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