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Isaac On Jewish and Christian AltarsPolemic and Exegesis in Rashi and the Glossa Ordinaria$
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Devorah Schoenfeld

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780823243495

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823243495.001.0001

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Rashi and His Sources

Rashi and His Sources

(p.31) Chapter Two Rashi and His Sources
Isaac On Jewish and Christian Altars

Devorah Schoenfeld

Fordham University Press

This chapter shows how Rashi draws selectively on a range of midrashic sources (including Genesis Rabbah and Midrash Tanchuma) and adapts them by truncating and rearranging them to create a commentary that is very different from those it is based on. It traces the development of Rashi’s commentary on Genesis 22 from its midrashic sources through the manuscript tradition, and examines the strategies that help it present itself as arising directly from the biblical text. It shows that Rashi’s ideal reader reads the layered commentary of recombined midrash worked into the language of the biblical text in terms of two possibly contradictory medieval assumptions about the biblical text: that the Bible is self-glossing, and that the Bible requires a layer of authoritative, inspired exegesis in order to be understood.

Keywords:   Rashi, Midrash, Genesis Rabbah, Midrash Tanchuma, Manuscripts, Genesis 22

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