Wrestling with God and Men: Homo­sex­u­al­i­ty in the Jew­ish Tradition

Steven Green­berg
  • From the Publisher
October 10, 2011
Wrestling with God and Men is the prod­uct of Rab­bi Steven Greenberg’s ten-year strug­gle to rec­on­cile his homo­sex­u­al­i­ty with Ortho­dox Judaism. Employ­ing tra­di­tion­al rab­binic resources, Green­berg presents read­ers with sur­pris­ing bib­li­cal inter­pre­ta­tions of the cre­ation sto­ry, the love of David and Jonathan, the destruc­tion of Sodom, and the con­demn­ing vers­es of Leviti­cus. But Green­berg goes beyond the ques­tion of whether homo­sex­u­al­i­ty is bib­li­cal­ly accept­able to ask how such rela­tion­ships can be sacred. In so doing, he draws on a wide array of non­scrip­tur­al texts to intro­duce read­ers to occa­sions of same-sex love in Tal­mu­dic nar­ra­tives, medieval Jew­ish poet­ry and prose, and tra­di­tion­al Jew­ish case law lit­er­a­ture. Ulti­mate­ly, Green­berg argues that Ortho­dox com­mu­ni­ties must open up debate, dia­logue, and dis­cus­sion – pre­cise­ly the foun­da­tion upon which Jew­ish law rests – to tru­ly deal with the issue of homo­sex­u­al love.

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