Self-definition and halakhah
Apostasy and Jewish identity
Self-definition and halakhah
he halakhic definition of Jewishness is one of the prime factors
fashioning the Jew’s understanding both of himself and of his
environment. The halakhic attitude towards those Jews who voluntarily
embraced Christianity, or who were forced to accept that religion,
shaped the disposition of those Jews who remained Jews as against those
who became Christians. While the halakhic literature contains decisions
deriving, by and large, from explicitly halakhic considerations
organisation: the punk
scene in Munich, 1979–82
This chapter presents a history from below that draws on fanzines to show
the complexity of Munich’s punk scene between 1979 and 1982. In so doing,
the function of fanzines within a local space will be demonstrated, shedding
light on the inner workings of a particular punk milieu. Punk in Munich has
yet to be adequately researched. But through this case study, assumptions as
to the development and influence of German punk can be reviewed. Methodologically
This book offers a new way of looking at Irish foreign policy, linking its development with changes in Irish national identity. Many debates within contemporary international relations focus on the relative benefits of taking a traditional interest-based approach to the study of foreign policy as opposed to the more recently developed identity-based approach. This book takes the latter and, instead of looking at Irish foreign policy through the lens of individual, geo-strategic or political interests, is linked to deeper identity changes. As one Minister of Foreign Affairs put it; ‘Irish foreign policy is about much more than self-interest. The elaboration of our foreign policy is also a matter of self-definition—simply put, it is for many of us a statement of the kind of people that we are’. Using this approach, four grand narratives are identified which, it is argued, have served to shape the course of Irish foreign policy and which have, in turn, been impacted by the course of Ireland's international experience. The roots and significance of each of these narratives; Ireland as a European Republic, as a Global Citizen, as an Anglo-American State and as an Irish Nation are then outlined and their significance assessed. The shape of Irish foreign-policy-making structures is then drawn out and the usefulness of this book's approach to Irish foreign policy is then considered in three brief case studies: Ireland's European experience, its neutrality and Irish policy towards the 2003 Iraq War.
The story of the Flood, inherited by the Anglo-Saxons during their conversion to Christianity, was transformed by them into a vital myth through which they interpreted the whole of history and their place in it. The dual character of the myth, with the opposition between threatened destruction and hope of renewal, presented commentators with a potent historical metaphor, which they exploited in their own changing historical circumstance. This book explores the use of this metaphor in the writings of the Anglo-Saxons. It is the integration of a well-known biblical story into the historical and cultural self-definition of a group of people converted to Christianity and its worldview. The Flood in the Bible is clearly a punishment, though the sin is not so well defined. This forms part of a historical pattern of sin and punishment extending back to Eden, and progressed to the sin and exile of Cain. For Bede the historian, the Flood was a key event in the earlier history of the world; for Bede the theologian, the Flood was an event replete with mystical significance. In Exodus and Andreas all the poems share an interest in two themes, which emerge from the biblical story of the Flood and its theological interpretation: covenant and apocalypse. Noah is the 'one father' not only of Israel, but of the whole human race, and his introduction widens the concept of 'inheritance' in the Exodus. The book concludes with a detailed discussion of the significance of the Flood myth in Beowulf.
This article proposes that Manchester, John Rylands Library, Latin MS 165 was an
‘accessory text’ produced and gifted within the Tudor court and
passed down by matrilineal transmission within the influential Fortescue family.
It proposes that from the text’s conception, the book of devotions
participated in various projects of self-definition, including Henry
VII’s campaign for the canonisation of his Lancastrian ancestor, Henry
VI. By analysing visual and textual evidence, it posits that later female owners
imitated the use of marginal spaces by the book’s original scribe and
illuminator. Finally, it traces the book’s ownership back from its
acquisition by the John Rylands Library to the viscounts Gage, in whose custody
the book underwent a transformation from potentially subversive tool of female
devotion to obscure historical artefact.
activism. The Palestinian other and his oppression by the Israeli house
demolition policies seem to be subsumed into the anecdotal telling of the selfrealisation of the hegemonic Israeli ‘we’.
Elements of my own self-realisation appear to have less to do with the
Palestinian other and more to do with ‘our’ own self-definition. In 2000 Nahla
Abdo and I were invited to present a paper on co-editing our book Women and
the Politics of Military Confrontation: Palestinian and Israeli Gendered
Narratives of Dislocation (Abdo and Lentin 2002) at the Israeli Association of
The civic republican political theory of David Marquand
addressing the emerging challenges of national self-definition.
Citizenship, republicanism and democracy
The development of Marquand’s civic republicanism
The Unprincipled Society
Let’s begin with Marquand’s first major attempt to survey the problems of the
UK and propose a way forward in his book, The Unprincipled Society. The book
was written in the mid-1980s, in the context of Marquand’s deep involvement
with the SDP-Liberal Alliance. It was published in 1988, just as the Alliance
project came off the rails. Nevertheless, it was very influential and can be seen
belonging, but also, in a more obviously spatial application, an
area of land over which a certain jurisdiction is authorised. 61 As small
parcels, poetic heterocosms that are simultaneously spatial plots
and self-enclosed polities, stand-alone sonnets like Phaëton’s
seek to negotiate the contours of national identity and political
self-definition, mapping out for their readers and dedicatees a
children’s novel, The Book of
Gilly: Four Months Out of a Life (1906), where experiencing nature and formal education are identified as contrasts from the outset and their respective validity as routes to knowledge and self-definition interrogated.
In recent years, growing interest in children’s conditions and experiences has led to the emergence of childhood studies as a distinctive field
of research. In Ireland, this has manifested among other things in a special
double issue of Éire-Ireland in 2009, with most of the contributions focusing on poor or mistreated
Passing and writing in The White Boy Shuffle and The Human Stain
their bodies as a key site of self-definition through their commitment to their respective sports (basketball; boxing). Both are, moreover, committed writers: Gunnar becomes a celebrated poet and the novel, like Middlesex, passes as his ‘memoirs’ (p. 2); Coleman fails to publish his own magnum opus, memoirs entitled Spooks.
Beatty’s The White Boy Shuffle, a first-person narrative, traces Gunnar’s late childhood, adolescence and early adulthood in Santa Monica, Los Angeles and Boston as he struggles to become a published poet. In