Wisdom in rabbinic interpretation

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


An expansive approach to the rabbinic interpretation of wisdom would entail comparing the rabbis’ diverse notions of wisdom with pre-rabbinic conceptions, while a more focused approach, and the one pursued here, approaches wisdom from a literary perspective. If we consider Wisdom as a literary genre or mode, Mishnah Avot emerges as a late member of the Wisdom literary trajectory, sharing salient features with earlier Wisdom Literature. In light of Avot’s presence on a literary continuum with ancient Hebrew Wisdom, I hope to show how Ben Sira’s Praise of the Fathers paved the way for various features and innovations of Avot which, in turn, enriched the rabbinic interpretation of wisdom.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Wisdom and the Bible
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9780190661267
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2021


  • Ben sira
  • Mishnah avot
  • Rabbinic interpretation
  • Rabbinic literature
  • Wisdom

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Arts and Humanities


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