This book is meant to provide an introduction to medieval Judaism for non- Jewish students. Students of medieval Christian Europe are probably the specific audience that the author had in mind, and he addresses them by adding many casual references to figures and texts well-known in that field. To a Jewish reader who is familiar with the details of Judaism, these throw-away comments add liveliness and food for thought.
The primary focus is on the intellectual heritage of medieval Judaism, the different categories and genres of books that were written by Jews. To set the stage, the author sketches the development of Judaism from Late Antiquity, and the broad strokes of Jewish history. The survey is sometimes confusing, jumping between historical periods and geographical areas. But it is pleasant reading, and the author provides insights from the latest research in a variety of fields. Bibliography, index, notes.