Book Series Cultural Encounters in Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, vol. 17

Conflict and Religious Conversation in Latin Christendom

Studies in Honour of Ora Limor

Israel Yuval, Ram Ben-Shalom (eds)

  • Pages: 306 p.
  • Size:156 x 234 mm
  • Illustrations:15 b/w
  • Language(s):English
  • Publication Year:2014

  • ISBN: 978-2-503-53514-2
  • Hardback
  • Available
  • ISBN: 978-2-503-54322-2
  • E-book
  • Available


"(...) the volume is more than just a collection of essays in honor of a distinguished colleague. It is also a model of how to write the history of Jewish-Christian relations in the Middle Ages(...)" (Jonathan M. Elukin, in: The Medieval Review 15.04.13)

"The reader will get an excellent overview of the polemical literature. At the same time, the reader will be able to appreciate the impact of the research of Ora Limor."  (Antoni Biosca, in: Speculum, 90/4, 2015, p. 1185-1187)

"Was macht  nun diesen Sammelband lesenswert? Es wird darin nicht nur die christliche Adversus-Judeos-Literatur, sondern auch die jüdische Perspektive - einschließlich zahlreicher Elemente textlichen, gedanklichen und bildlichen Kulturtransfers,  aus dem Christentum - behandelt, sodass Juden als Handelnde, nicht nur als Objekte christlicher Invektiven erscheinen. Auch die intellektuelle Auseinandersetzung mit dem Islam spielt eine Rolle. Die teilweise unerwartet pragmatischen Positionen mittelalterlicher Autoren zu interreligiöser Polemik, zur Akzeptanz von Andersgläubigen und zur Frage religiöser Identität sind auch und gerade im Jahr 2015 von offenkundiger Aktualität." (Christine Magin, in: Rottenburger Jahrbuch für Kirchengeschichte 34, 2015, p. 283-285)


The literature against the Jews (contra Iudeos) was crucially influential in the shaping of Christianity during the centuries following the crucifixion, particularly during the period when Christianity remained outside official Roman toleration. And yet, this phenomenon did not decline in the Middle Ages when Christianity emerged as the supreme power in the western world and Judaism could no longer threaten it in any way. The Jewish response to this literary practice did not arise for some time, yet from the twelfth century onwards the effort to counter Christian ideological attacks became a central intellectual activity and a pressing concern on the part of Jewish scholars in the West. Although both Latin and Hebrew polemics were often intended, first and foremost, for local audiences in order to satisfy local needs and intellectual demands, they also engaged each other, and raised urgent theological and cultural questions in doing so. This cultural discourse did not just find expression in polemical literature (Nizahon and Adversus Iudaeos) but also in a variety of other representations and daily practices. This collection of studies is devoted to an examination of the significance of this phenomenon as a longue durée process, and pursues its concerns from a variety of innovative perspectives that join together authoritative scholars from the field of Jewish-Christian relations.



‘There is no Hatred in Polemics — And Liberty is Granted’ —Ram Ben -Shalom and Israel Jacob Yuval

Jewish Romans, Christian Romans, and the Post-Roman West The Social Correlates of the contra Iudaeos Tradition — Paula Fredriksen

Ecclesia and synagoga: The Changing Meanings of a Powerful Pairing — Miri Rubin

Emicho of Flonheim and the Apocalyptic Motif in the 1096 Massacres: Between Paul Alphandéry and Alphonse Dupront — Benjamin Z. Kedar

‘Ante omnia, fratres carissimi, diligatur Deus, deinde proximus’: Herman/Judah’s Opusculum de conversione sua Re-examined — Harvey J. Hames

Semantics of Mohammed and Islam in Joachim of Fiore — Alexander Patschovsky

Martyrdom and Sexuality: The Case of an Eleventh-Century Piyyut for Hanukkah and its Visual Interpretation in the Fifteenth Century — Sarit Shalev-Eyni

Polemic and Pluralism: The Jewish-Christian Debate in Solomon ibn Verga’s Shevet Yehudah — Jeremy Cohen

Christians, Jews, and Hebrew Books in Fifteenth-Century Sicily: Between Dialogue and Dispute — Nadia Zeldes

The Foundation of Christianity in the Historical Perceptions of Medieval Jewry as Expressed in the Anonymous Various Elements on the Topic of Christian Faith (London, BL, MS Addit. 27129, pp. 88b–92a) — Ram Ben-Shalom

From Polemics and Apologetics to Theology and Politics: Alonso de Cartagena and the Conversos within the ‘Mystical Body’ — Claude B. Stuczynski

Between Calvinists and Jews in Seventeenth-Century Amsterdam — Yosef Kaplan