God Laughed: Sources of Jewish Humor - Routledge Jewish Studies Series (Hardback)
  • God Laughed: Sources of Jewish Humor - Routledge Jewish Studies Series (Hardback)
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God Laughed: Sources of Jewish Humor - Routledge Jewish Studies Series (Hardback)

(author)
£120.00
Hardback 368 Pages / Published: 30/05/2014
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Humor has had a profound effect on the way the Jewish people see the world, and has sustained them through millennia of hardships and suffering. God Laughed reviews, organizes, and categorizes the humor of the ancient Jewish texts-the Hebrew Bible, the Talmud, and Midrash-in a clear, readable, and accessible manner.

These works have influenced the Jewish people in many ways, and all are replete with humor and wit. Inevitably, this oeuvre of Jewish humor has itself influenced generations of comics, as well as genres of humor. The authors use examples of Biblical humor from several broad categories, including irony, sarcasm, wordplay, humorous names, humorous imagery, and humorous situations.

Because their primary purpose is not to entertain, but to teach humanity how to live the ideal life, much of the humor in the Talmud and the Midrash has a single purpose: to demonstrate that evil is wrong and even, at times, ludicrous. This may help explain why approximately 1,500 years after its closing, the Talmud is still such a fascinating work. God Laughed is the latest addition to Transaction's Jewish Studies series.

Publisher: Taylor & Francis Inc
ISBN: 9781412853767
Number of pages: 368
Weight: 840 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 28 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"This book is the most thorough examination of the earliest sources of Jewish humor, and should be a part of the library of every humor scholar." - HUMOR: International Journal of Humor Research 2016, 29(1) "In this lighthearted but thoughtful study, professors Friedman and Friedman step outside the bounds of their own academic disciplines to trace the origins and evolution of Jewish humor from religious texts. Citing numerous sources including the Hebrew Bible, the Talmud, and the Midrash, the authors do a thorough and convincing job of identifying the presence of humor, especially the distinctive elements of self-deprecation and irony, in the Torah. Instances in which God invites argument from humans-including Abraham's defense of the lives of the residents of Sodom and Gomorrah-are presented as logical precursors to jokes at the deity's expense, as they make clear the notion that candid conversations are not viewed as heretical. Lay readers will appreciate the leavening of what could have been a dry recital with multiple examples of contemporary jokes, and examples from TV shows including Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm." - Publishers Weekly "A rich and rewarding book...What is revelatory is how well the Friedmans know their subject. They not only provide scores of examples from the sacred Jewish sources, they spice the proceedings with an abundance of contemporary Jewish jokes (and believe me, they include countless classics). They also provide a fine bibliography, appendices of dates in Jewish history and the periods of the Talmudic sages and classic commentators, a general index, and even an index of jokes and punchlines." - The Jerusalem Post

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