Medieval and Early Modern Jewish Romance
Series: Jewish Engagements
This study features essays from leading scholars highlighting the important Jewish contributions to the popular medieval genre of romance. Writing against strict notions of genre boundaries and canonization, this volume provides a new understanding of medieval and early modern romance through a working definition consisting of variable elements, including language, literary devices, plot, and characters. The contributions in this volume establish that many texts written in the medieval and early modern Jewish communities across Europe and beyond can be classified as "romance.” Each of the nine chapters as well as the afterword by Eli Yassif discusses romance as it relates to the medieval and early modern Jewish world, as well as the greater non-Jewish context. This volume places Jewish texts into the scholarly conversation as sources for forming a new understanding of the genre of romance across religious and cultural boundaries.
"Introduction," by Annegret Oehme and Caroline Gruenbaum
Part I: Writing Beyond Genre
Eitan P. Fishbane: “The Zohar as Medieval Jewish Romance”
Dana Fishkin: “Letters of Loathing: Immanuel of Rome and Romance Epistolary”
Sara Offenberg: “Illuminated Knights and Tales of Romance in the Rothschild Miscellany”
Part II: Is Jewish Romance Jewish?
Tovi Bibring: “he Queen Nudatio, a Romanesque (?) Topos in Israel Caslari’s Roman d’Esther”
Shamma Boyarin: “At the Court of the Demon King: The Story of the Jerusalemite and Chivalric Romance”
Rella Kushelevsky: “King Artus as a Jewish Romance: Horizons of Expectation and Generic Configurations”
Part III: Global Narratives
Ruth von Bernuth: “A Friend in Need is a Friend Indeed? Friendship, Love, and Loyalty in the Yiddish Seven Sages of Rome”
Astrid Lembke: “Stealing back One’s Husband: The Yiddish Mayse mi-Danzek in the Context of Early Modern Cross-Dressing Narratives”
Revital Refael-Vivante: “Romance Elements in Meshal haQadmoni by Isaac Ibn Sahula: A New Reading”
"Afterword: Jewish Romance in Search of Identity," by Eli Yassif
Caroline Gruenbaum is an editorial associate at the Posen Library of Jewish Culture and Civilization. She holds a PhD in Judaic Studies from New York University, where she was also affiliated with the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Center.
Annegret Oehme is an Associate Professor in the Department of German Studies at the University of Washington, Seattle. She received her PhD in 2016 from Duke University and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill through the Carolina–Duke Graduate Program in German Studies.