Demonic Desires: "Yetzer Hara" and the Problem of Evil in Late Antiquity
280 pages | 6 x 9
Cloth 2011 | ISBN 978-0-8122-4339-0 | $69.95 | £45.50
A volume in the Divinations: Rereading Late Ancient Religion series
"Demonic Desires analyzes a crucial element of late antique Jewish religious thought, the concept of the yetzer hara. Rosen-Zvi aims to correct misplaced assumptions about the yetzer, in terms of both anachronistic readings of the rabbinic tradition and misleading comparisons made between the yetzer and other aspects of late antique religious thought in the Hellenistic world. The book is a valuable contribution to an important area of study."–Columba Stewart, Saint John's School of Theology Seminary
This study examines the concept of yetzer hara, or evil inclination. Analyzing the some one hundred and fifty appearances of the yetzer in rabbinic literature, Rosen-Zvi contends that the term should not be read under the traditional rubric of sexual desire, but rather in the context of ancient Jewish demonology.
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