Containing nearly two million words in thirty-seven volumes, the Talmud covers topics as diverse as law, faith, medicine, magic, ethics, sex, humor, and prayer. It is a highly complex, profoundly logical, and frequently impenetrable work with a history like no other. In its fifteen-hundred-year history, the Talmud has been banned, censored, and burned; dissected by scholars and rabbis; probed by philosophers, poets, politicians, and kings.
In The Talmud, Jewish scholar Harry Freedman tells the engrossing story of an ancient classic, the legal and mystical pillar of Judaism, and recounts the story of a chronicle that, in many ways, parallels the history of the Jewish people. From its origins as a record of discussions among scholars in towns and villages close to modern-day Baghdad, Freedman traces the spiraling paths of the Jewish diaspora and explores the story of the Talmud, its role during the Enlightenment, and its influence over traditional Judaism. A compelling fusion of law, storytelling, and spirituality, the Talmud's story provides fascinating insight into the history of Judaism, and Harry Freedman's The Talmud – A Biography is a remarkable account of one of the most important cultural, historical, and religious works of our time.