Zusar Border Lines To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. University of Pennsylvania Press. Summary Discuss Reviews 0 Includes bibliographical references p. That lack seemed to be a major lacuna in this volume. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
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Start your review of Border Lines: The Partition of Judaeo-Christianity Write a review Jan 02, John Walker rated it liked it Anyone interested in the origins of Christianity and its development into the Patristic era will, at some point, have to account for the parting of ways between Christianity and Judaism.
As the subtitle makes clear enough, Boyarin detects, not a peaceful, inevitable split between these two "religions", but a partition - an enforced dissolution. Readers be Anyone interested in the origins of Christianity and its development into the Patristic era will, at some point, have to account for the parting of ways between Christianity and Judaism. Readers be warned, this is a rather complex work. Boyarin approaches the phenomena as a post-colonial historian.
Which, if I were to summarize, means that he walks into the past holding everyone suspect. Any historical event is an opportunity to dig up an underlying conspiracy. And not the kind of conspiracy that consists of bizarre, extraordinary events. But the kind that lurks within seemingly mundane actions. No one is innocent - all are participating within the power structures of the day and often unknowingly marginalizing the weak and uneducated.
The sociological theories that contribute to the post-colonial project are quite sophisticated. The terminology will likely be new for those who are unfamiliar with PC thought; it certainly was for me.
Many of the smaller arguments and sub-points will regretfully be unstated. Christianity began as a sect within Judaism - and continued so throughout the New Testament period. It was not until the time of Justin Martyr, the mid 2nd century, that Christianity began to truly become "other" than Judaism.
This "parting of ways" was not a natural process determined by the difference of theology between the two entities. Rather, it was an imposed partition rendered by the heresiologists i. They were not simply identifying heresies and heretics, they were producing them. In doing so, they were constructing their own identity. Because Christianity had no specific geographic or ethnic qualities, she had to find here identity within beliefs.
It was theology which unified, not common ancestry. This detachment of religion from ethnic and cultural ties is what Boyarin terms the "disembedding" of religion. Prior to the ante-Nicene heresiologists, Judaism was a conglomerate of Judaisms - a coalition of sects, all under the umbrella of Judaism.
However, upon the dubious? It became an orthodoxy to which one must subscribe if he wishes to maintain his Jewish identity. Christianity set itself over against Judaism. To be a Christian was to be a not-Jew. Thus, Justin needed to determine what it was to be a Jew - strictly so a Christian could not be that. Thus, the pluralism that was allegedly present prior to Justin, was dissolved under his labor. The border lines were drawn and their was now Christianity, and there was Judaism. Hybrids were deemed heretics.
Boyarin demonstrates his scheme through charting out the history of Logos theology. Logos theology being the belief in "two powers in heaven"; God Himself, and a second power, variously known as Wisdom, Memra, Sophia, etc. This was the portion I was especially looking forward to. Rather, it was a notion deeply embedded within the Judaism of the 2nd Temple period.
Complexity within the Godhead was not a novelty within the New Testament. On the contrary, Boyarin thinks it was likely predominant. Thus, the accounts which implement Logos theology as the key to the "parting of ways" are mistaken.
However, it is clear within the 2nd century that this became a major contention between Jews and Christians. For Justin, a Christian was one who held to Logos theology and a Jew was one who rejected it.
So how did this come to be? Boyarin argues that Justin is not portraying Jewish orthodoxy when he records their rejection of Logos, rather, he is constructing it.
Justin, or at least those like him, is responsible for the removal of Logos theology from Judaism. What once had a lasting heritage in Judaism became a strictly Christian doctrine. Yet the story does not end there. Boyarin goes on to draw up the story of Judaism in the 6th century. Namely, the point in which it rejects the Christian innovation of orthodoxy. The game that the Christians had lured the Jews into playing, the game of "religion", would ultimately be rejected by the Jewish community.
The pluralism of late Judaism has been "remembered into" the history of the Rabbis. Judaism rejected its status as an orthodoxy, and became a reembedded religion. To be a Jew was no longer to hold to certain doctrine, rather it was to be a certain ethnicity.
In the end, Judaism became something wholly other than Christianity, not simply in content, but in category. Judaism ceased to be a "religion" like Christianity. Thus, as it was in the days of the Apostles, one could again be a Jew and a Christian, or a Christian and a Jew. I close with a few thoughts of my own. I think Boyarin has published an incredibly erudite and creative work.
His reading of the Talmud was impressive and rather persuasive, and he certainly made imaginative connections while maintaing credibility. However, I am surprised he did not give any time to drawing up a history of the 1st century interaction between Judaism and Christianity. That lack seemed to be a major lacuna in this volume.
Likewise, his suspicion toward all the actors of antiquity is a bit exhausting. I also think that he has overplayed the presence of Logos theology. In truth, it was quite a bit of work to get through this one. A decent book, no doubt, yet not likely one to which I will return often.
Note: This book was received free of charge in exchange for an honest review. It is lucidly argued and densely supported.
Add to basket Add to wishlist Description The historical separation between Judaism and Christianity is often figured as a clearly defined break of a single entity into two separate religions. Following this model, there would have been one religion known as Judaism before the birth of Christ, which then took on a hybrid identity. Even before its subsequent division, certain beliefs and practices of this composite would have been identifiable as Christian or Jewish. In Border Lines, however, Daniel Boyarin makes a striking case for a very different way of thinking about the historical development that is the partition of Judaeo-Christianity.
Border Lines: The Partition of Judaeo-Christianity
Start your review of Border Lines: The Partition of Judaeo-Christianity Write a review Jan 02, John Walker rated it liked it Anyone interested in the origins of Christianity and its development into the Patristic era will, at some point, have to account for the parting of ways between Christianity and Judaism. As the subtitle makes clear enough, Boyarin detects, not a peaceful, inevitable split between these two "religions", but a partition - an enforced dissolution. Readers be Anyone interested in the origins of Christianity and its development into the Patristic era will, at some point, have to account for the parting of ways between Christianity and Judaism. Readers be warned, this is a rather complex work.