University of Lausanne BiBIL
  Institut romand des sciences bibliques
  Biblical Bibliography of Lausanne - BiBIL
Administration Contact Impressum  
Notice details
Bibil Identifier bibil:223374
Publication Type Journal article
Title (English, Long) 'Their Backs toward the Temple, and Their Faces toward the East:' The Temple and Toilet Practices in Rabbinic Palestine and Babylonia
Author Neis, Rachel
Journal Journal for the Study of Judaism (Volume: 43, Issue: 3)
Year (Publication) 2012
Year (Original (1st Edition)) 2012
Year (Copyright) 2012
Year (Reference) 2012
Language English
Pages 328-368 Pages
Genre Original
Abstract This article treats the cultural meaning of rabbinic toilet rules from their Tannaitic instantiation through to later developments in Palestine and Mesopotamia. It argues that these rules draw their corporeal and mental bearings from the Jerusalem temple, in inverse and opposite directions to prayer deportment. It shows how the juxtaposition of the sacred (temple) and profane (toilet) triggered the temple in unlikely instances under the guise of prohibition. As such, toilet rules are the underside of a rabbinic mapping project, similar to rules of bodily orientation in prayer. This map, effectively drawn by corporeal direction and orientation, with the (absent) temple at its center, traversed Palestine and the Diaspora, and ignored contemporary religious and imperials maps and limes. Thus developing toilet practices can tell us something about how a minority religious and social formation shaped bodily functions not necessarily in the more predictable terms of disgust and expulsion but rather as devices through which to uphold a lost center.
Keywords Thesaurus BiBIL : Milieu : Ancient Judaism : Important Persons and Movements : Talmudic Period : Rabbinism
Thesaurus BiBIL : Milieu : Ancient Judaism : Literature : Mishna
Thesaurus BiBIL : Milieu : Ancient Judaism : Literature : Talmud (Babli and Yerushalmi)
Thesaurus BiBIL : Milieu : Ancient Judaism : Themes : Customs
Thesaurus BiBIL : Milieu : Ancient Judaism : Themes : Temple
Last modification 2017-10-27