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After reading this book, I will never read the Torah texts the same way again. Filed under Literature , Spiritual. Great post. Yesterday, I emailed Harold Bloom to request a book jacket quote. Hey Scott. Glad you liked the post.

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When I met Mr. Bloom, he seemed very gracious. I would not be surprised if he says yes. Be sure to let me know what happens. Good luck! You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Sign me up! I almost always love that kind of mental curve-ball and so, would recommend this book. Mar 26, Joe rated it it was amazing Shelves: mythology-and-ancient-epics. This is a manuscript of pivotal importance, and almost no one has heard of it. Yet it changed history forever and led to three of the world's most influential religions.

Who was J? Most likely a scribe in the time of Solomon and later David, when David was just coming into his own. This is the earliest version of the Bible. Want to have your faith challenged? Well too bad. This is solid proof that the origins of Christianity were originally very different, and not at all orthodoxized.

That came This is a manuscript of pivotal importance, and almost no one has heard of it. That came later. For at one time they were playful, brilliant nuanced stories that did not take themselves at face value. I cannot stress how much reading this has changed my outlook on the way that humans form ideas, and how history is affected by the smallest acts.

Valuable beyond measure. Apr 04, Elizabeth rated it really liked it. I am not the organized religion type and so I am open to possibilities. This is a very interesting book and the fact that the author and translator are able to pull the work of one author from the text fascinates me. The fact that it may have been written by a female of the day made it more interesting for me still because I have wondered since childhood why women were not represented in the books of the Bible.

A more enlightened society and possibly computer algorithms may prove the medi I am not the organized religion type and so I am open to possibilities. A more enlightened society and possibly computer algorithms may prove the medieval males wrong about the supposed minor role women played long ago. Read this book and be sure to read the authors' notes and forwards etc. We all know the stories but this book puts a different slant or twist to them.

Thank you. Some sections are highly speculative in nature, such as the suggestion that The Yahwist was a woman who lived in the the courts of those who succeeded King Solomon and the suggestion that her work was perhaps meant to be understood as a fictional account rather than be accepted as Holy Writ, but wherever such speculation appears it is clearly labeled as such, making this book is a valuable resource to all serious students of the Bible. It certainly increased my appreciation for the unknown autho Some sections are highly speculative in nature, such as the suggestion that The Yahwist was a woman who lived in the the courts of those who succeeded King Solomon and the suggestion that her work was perhaps meant to be understood as a fictional account rather than be accepted as Holy Writ, but wherever such speculation appears it is clearly labeled as such, making this book is a valuable resource to all serious students of the Bible.

It certainly increased my appreciation for the unknown author who penned so many of the fascinating and wonderful stories in the Pentateuch. Jun 25, Ruth Shulman rated it it was amazing. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. There are others, but using the text of a recent translation of J's work, Bloom submits that J was an educated woman.

The translation forms the first part of the book, followed by Bloom's gradual unfolding of his thesis.


  • More about this book.
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  • Conjunctions.

He makes a convincing case. A very good read, even for atheists. Dec 27, Andreas rated it it was amazing. Very enlightening book on J, the enigmatic writer of the most original and imaginative parts of the Hebrew Bible. Bloom is his own speculative self, but his guesses are very entertaining and they seem to make sense. If you think the Bible is stuffy and boring, read this and you'll be in for a surprise. May 01, Cynthia Machata rated it really liked it.

A very interesting view on history, religion and a disruption to the way 'things are suppose to be' Mar 06, Red Shoes rated it it was amazing.


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I have a love of the art of translation, and to watch as these scholars dissect the language of the most-read and least-understood books, and extrapolate on their origin, was awesome. Sep 26, geraldo rivera rated it really liked it Shelves: advisorybooks. This is a wonderfully original interpretation of what biblical scholars believe to be the earliest writings from the Torah the first five books of the Hebrew Bible. Bloom has an annoying tendency to use superlatives to describe the author's J's genius, rather than just giving his interpretation of J's literature and letting the reader decide whether or not this is the greatest author until Shakespeare.

But his analysis, when he gets down to it, is insightful. More importantly, he does what l This is a wonderfully original interpretation of what biblical scholars believe to be the earliest writings from the Torah the first five books of the Hebrew Bible. More importantly, he does what literary criticism should do: he invites you to read the original text in a whole new light, thereby enhancing your appreciation of the author's work.

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As a bonus, The Book of J also includes a new translation of what scholars believe to be J's writings hence the title It is hard to be sure of what is actually J's, since the final editor of what came to be the Torah masterfully interwove the writings of 4 or 5 authors from different time periods. But if Bloom and his translator - David Rosenberg - are even largely on the right track, then the inventor of such powerful stories as the expulsion from the Garden of Eden, Jacob wrestling with the angel of God, and the epic tale of Joseph, was a masterful storyteller with a mischievous eye for irony and a passion for those who live life to the fullest.

Apr 19, Alger rated it really liked it. It has been a while since I read this, but the lasting impact that this book had upon my understanding of the Bible and the actual purpose of the authors has been lasting and beneficial.

The Book of J | work by Bloom | gyqacyxaja.cf

I might even go so far as to argue that this book introduced me to deconstruction as a literary tool. Well written and logical, a marvelous revelation of biblical politics and history, and just a fine book in many ways. My one reservation is the faddish, and entirely unnecessary assertion by Bloom that J was a wo It has been a while since I read this, but the lasting impact that this book had upon my understanding of the Bible and the actual purpose of the authors has been lasting and beneficial.

My one reservation is the faddish, and entirely unnecessary assertion by Bloom that J was a woman. Although it was probably intended as an attempt to redress a gender imbalance in presumed biblical authors not to mention a cunning mass market sales tool , Bloom's basis for that claim is pretty much founded in sexist stereotypes. The gender of J is irrelevant and unknowable, although what she created is of lasting beauty. Given all that, I suspect that if I went back and read it again, I would see how out of date the information is and how very different the consensus in biblical scholarship is today than it was when this was written.

Perhaps it works best now as a primer for biblical studies. Nov 30, Abby Stein rated it it was amazing. Somehow my view of, and amusement with the Bible does not decrease with such an inquiry, but rather increases ten fold. This free translation of what scholars call the "J" part of the Bible and is the foundation of Richard Friedman's The Hidden Book in the Bible , is an amazing work of literature. Inspiring, well written, and feminist. Reading the Bible as work of literature, as well as cultural and reflective of history, moves it beyond the notions of the Bible that are considered 'outdated' i Somehow my view of, and amusement with the Bible does not decrease with such an inquiry, but rather increases ten fold.

Reading the Bible as work of literature, as well as cultural and reflective of history, moves it beyond the notions of the Bible that are considered 'outdated' in modern-liberal societies. Like Shakespeare and Homer, it can aspire us with the essence of it, without deviating us to deal with the obstacles we stumble on when taken literary. I am not saying it is the only way to read it, but it is definitely worthwhile keeping this method in mind. A note on the translation: deriving from this point of view, the free translation of the Bible in this book is one that I never encountered before.

In a very positive form. Rich, and a pleasurable read. Mixed feelings. Worth reading because Bloom's contributions are splendid the translation does a fine job of restoring the freshness and strangeness of this most familiar of texts. That said, there are some infelicities in the translation "The man named his wife Hava: she would have all who live, smooth the way, mother.

It pulls the reader up and distracts from the work, whi Mixed feelings. It pulls the reader up and distracts from the work, which more than offsets whatever gains you realize by doing it. Apr 25, James Coon rated it it was amazing. This is re-creation of what Bloom and the translator believe may have been the original Jawist version of the books of Moses, before being combined with other versions by the Redactor. Reading this the story presentend in this way is a powerful experience, much more so than the version we have in the King James Bible or other translations.

Of course, there is no way to know for sure how close this is to the original, but it is well worth the read for the literary merit of the material itself. Jul 17, John Mitchell rated it it was amazing Shelves: spirit-u.

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My big takeaway was and has aways been that the blessing of More Life is for exuberance and transcendence of self. Hippie love energy, selfless self actualization, Sunday morning joy. Creative, intelligent energy can be tapped into for more life which leads to joy - of course I was in a very pink cloud when I read it years ago. I just picked it up and plan to reread it along with The Poets Bible. Jan 08, Gerrold rated it really liked it.

Ignore the unprovable claim that J was a women and just delight in the brilliant close readings. The reading of the Tower of Babel verses is particularly masterful. I found the claim that many translations flatten tone by ignoring irony and humor, for example quite persuasive, but then I don't read Hebrew. Jul 04, J. Pak rated it really liked it. I love Bloom's compelling theory that the best writer of Genesis was a woman. The theories of how the Old Testament was written can get pretty complex but Bloom's theory is simple, entertaining, and, I think, right.

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Joel S. He is the coauthor, with Candida R. He lives in New Haven, Connecticut. Twitter JoelBaden. Many of our ebooks are available through library electronic resources including these platforms:. Home The Book of Exodus.