Akiva

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Akiva

Life, Legend, Legacy

Reuven Hammer

232 pages

eBook (PDF)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

October 2015

978-0-8276-1275-4

$29.95 Add to Cart
Hardcover

October 2015

978-0-8276-1215-0

$29.95 Add to Cart
eBook (EPUB)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

October 2015

978-0-8276-1248-8

$29.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

The legendary Akiva ben Yosef has fascinated Jews for centuries. Arguably the most important of the Tannaim, or early Jewish sages, Akiva lived during a crucial era in the development of Judaism as we know it today, and his theology played a major part in the development of Rabbinic Judaism. Reuven Hammer details Akiva’s life as it led to a martyr’s death and he delves into the rich legacy Akiva left us.


That legacy played an extraordinarily important role in helping the Jewish people survive difficult challenges to forge a vibrant religious life anew, and it continues to influence Jewish law, ethics, and theology even today. Akiva’s contribution to the development of Oral Torah cannot be overestimated, and in this first book written in English about the sage since 1936 Hammer reassesses Akiva’s role from the period before the destruction of the Temple in 70 CE until the Bar Kokhba revolt in 135 CE. He also assesses new findings about the growth of early Judaism, the reasons why Akiva was so outspoken about “Christian Jews,” the influence of Hellenism, the Septuagint, and the canonization of the Hebrew Bible. Ultimately Hammer shows that Judaism without Akiva would be a very different religion.
 

Author Bio

Rabbi Reuven Hammer is the former director and dean of the Jerusalem branch of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America (JTS), where he served as a professor of Rabbinic literature. He holds a Doctor of Humane Letters from JTS and a PhD from Northwestern University and was also the founding director of the Seminary of Jewish Studies. He is the author or editor of many books, including Entering the High Holy Days: A Complete Guide to the History, Prayers, and Themes (JPS, 2005) and Sifre: A Taanaitic Commentary on the Book of Deuteronomy, both of which are National Jewish Book Award winners.


 

Praise

“With insight and mastery of Rabbinic sources, Rabbi Reuven Hammer has produced an outstanding review of the life of Rabbi Akiva, clarifying his life, thoughts, beliefs, and concerns for the Jewish people. His book will enlighten and captivate readers.”—Shalom Paul, professor emeritus, Bible Department at Hebrew University of Jerusalem
 

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