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Midrash and Aggadah

Widow of Zarephath: Midrash and Aggadah

The [jwa_encyclopedia_glossary:357]midrash[/jwa_encyclopedia_glossary] explains why Elijah stopped the rains and how it happened that he was commanded to go to the home of the woman in Zarephath.

Two Prostitutes as Mothers: Midrash and Aggadah

The Rabbis learned from the judgment of Solomon how a trial is to be conducted.

Timna, concubine of Eliphaz: Midrash and Aggadah

Timna was the sister of Lotan, one of Esau’s chiefs, and therefore the daughter of royalty. The Rabbis relate that she sought to convert and join Abraham’s household.

Tannaitic Literature, Inclusion of Women

Generally speaking, the more regular the mechanism of inclusive interpretation, the clearer it is that woman remains outside as the “other” because she requires a special reason to be included. In other words, rather than rendering women an integral part of the population, inclusion renders them as adjuncts, unique unto themselves.

Shunammite: Midrash and Aggadah

The Rabbis praise the hospitality of the Shunammite woman and learn from her conduct that everyone should bring a Torah scholar into their house, give him food and drink and let him enjoy all that they possess (Perek Zedakot 1, in Ozar ha-Midrashim [Eisenstein], p. 499).

Shua's daughter: Midrash and Aggadah

The Rabbis viewed Judah’s marriage to the daughter of Shua as a decline, which Gen. 38:1 records: “Judah left [va-yered, literally, went down from] his brothers.” He married the daughter of an idolater, and thereby betrayed the way of Israel (= Jacob), who had been careful not to marry the daughters of the land (Tanhuma [ed. Buber], Vayeshev 9).

Shelomith 1: Midrash and Aggadah

The Rabbis maintain that the phenomenon during the Egyptian servitude of Israelite women being married to Egyptians was rare, and the specific mention of the forging of such a bond with Shelomith teaches how exceptional this instance was.

Serah, daughter of Asher: Midrash and Aggadah

There are a plethora of midrashic traditions about Serah daughter of Asher, and thus the faceless Biblical character becomes a fascinating personality. Her history is intertwined with the story of the migration to Egypt and enslavement, and also with redemption and the return to Erez Israel.

Norma Rosen

Compelled, as a Jewish writer, by the injunction to remember, “Zakhor,” Norma Rosen’s fiction and essays examine ethics, motherhood, and faith after the Holocaust, as well as Jewish identity, feminism, texts, and practices.

Rizpah: Midrash and Aggadah

Rizpah’s behavior during the episode of the Gibeonites was highly praised by the Rabbis. Although two of her sons died, she accepted this, and took care that their corpses not be despoiled. Her actions were considered worthy of emulation and even King David learned from her. In consequence of her deeds, Rizpah saved all Israel from the famine.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Midrash and Aggadah." (Viewed on September 18, 2014) <http://jwa.org/topics/midrash-and-aggadah>.

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