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The Myth of the Cultural Jew – Culture and Law in Jewish Tradition - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Myth of the Cultural Jew: Culture and Law in Jewish Tradition

Roberta Rosenthal Kwall


A myth exists that Jews can embrace the cultural components of Judaism without appreciating the legal aspects of the Jewish tradition. This myth suggests that law and culture are independent of one another. In reality, however, much of Jewish culture has a basis in Jewish law. Similarly, Jewish law produces Jewish culture. A cultural analysis paradigm provides a useful way of understanding the Jewish tradition as the product of both legal precepts and cultural elements. This paradigm sees law and culture as inextricably intertwined and historically specific. This perspective also emphasizes th ... More

Keywords: cultural analysis, Jewish law, Jewish culture, Jewish tradition, Jewish identity, Judaism

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780195373707
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195373707.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Roberta Rosenthal Kwall, author
DePaul University College of Law