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Bibil Identifier bibil:213718
Publication Type Article of book
Title (English, Long) Just Another Jewish Mother? Mary in the Jewish Imagination
Author Stahlberg, Lesleigh Cushing
Edited book From the Margins 2
Year (Reference) 2009
Language English
Pages 8-23 Pages
Genre Original
Abstract This paper examines and analyzes a host of Jewish literary depictions of the mother of Jesus. In ancient Jewish sources, questioning Mary’s virtue is a way of demythologizing the Jesus narratives and thus undermining Christian doctrine. Yiddish American writings from the early twentieth-century conflate the Jewish demythologizing counter-narrative and narratives that uphold Mary as a model of devoted motherhood. Jewish American novelists of the early twenty-first century seem to turn to Mary out of genuine curiosity, not polemic, and try in a variety of ways to domesticate this figure who has no Jewish analogue. This means foregrounding Mary’s Jewishness and her maternal qualities, either for historical or comical effect. The translation of Mary to Jewish mother—either as archetype or as stereotype—reflects an effort to identify with an otherwise entirely perplexing figure. To impose the stereotype of the Jewish mother onto the Virgin is to disidentify Mary, to manage and merge two identities that have been tainted in the Jewish public sphere. Disidentification allows the woman formerly known as the Virgin Mary to become just another Jewish mother, and the Jewish mother to become a little bit more of a saint.
Keywords Thesaurus BiBIL : Unbound Keywords : Mary
Last modification 2017-10-27