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Torah Queeries: Weekly Commentaries on the Hebrew Bible Hardcover – October 28, 2009

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Editorial Reviews


“Rabbi Joshua Lesser . . . believes it is time for LGBT people to move beyond simply defending their identities from biblically based attacks. As one of the three editors of Torah Queeries: Weekly Commentaries on the Hebrew Bible, he hopes to push such discussions to a new, more complex level.”

-Southern Voice

“Provides a challenge to readers and preachers who are single-mindedly devoted to the straight and narrow.”
-Daniel Boyarin,author of Carnal Israel: Reading Sex in Talmudic Culture

“The Rabbinic oft-name for Torah (Learning) is (Reading) which carries the root (call), thus seeding the scriputural charge, (interpret me). Sixty briskly written, argumentative, apologetic, slightly political commentaries successfully do so in the spirit of religious freedom and equalitarian (sic)tolerance.” -Choice

“This unique and lively work blends the traditional Jewish format of dividing Torah into weekly portions with specifically queer perspectives on them. Torah Queeries unveils a new queer Jewish way to understand this most sacred and central text that will surely stimulate and challenge the reader.”

-Rabbi Rebecca T. Alpert,author of Whose Torah? A Concise Guide to Progressive Judaism

“While the CJM invites artists to interpret the week’s Torah portions, Torah Queeries invites LGBT individuals and allies to do so. Both should be celebrated and embraced for their creativity, innovation, and depth.”

-Jewish News Weekly of Northern California

“This book, an indispensable resource for all teachers and learners of Torah, in the best way possible makes queers of us all.”
-Jewish Currents

“The tone of the commentaries varies greatly: some are scholarly treatises drawing heavily on rabbinic sources, some are sociological or biological studies, while others are deeply moving personal essays. The book includes bibliographical references and an index. Highly recommended for all libraries.”-Association of Jewish Libraries Newsletters

“The goal of the book is to bring a new set of voices to Torah.”

-New Jersey Jewish News

“With Torah Queeries, no longer is the LGBT community an outsider in the Bible...[This volume is] a must for the Jewish bookshelf.”

-The Jerusalem Post

“Gives engaged, pertinent, GLBT-focused meaning to the Tanach. The analyses offered here work to break boundaries, queer-ing, celebrating, and re-creating our Jewish texts and traditions in meaningful ways. These acts of reading become the radical movement of making a space for GLBT Jews that is clever, humorous, loving, and thought-provoking.”
-Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum,Congregation Beth Simchat Torah, New York

“The point of all these essays is to make us question ourselves and our assumptions and in this purpose, they succeed. . .these authors offer insights into the Torah text that can speak to everyone, regardless of their gender identity.”
-The Reporter

Torah Queeries attempts to be a broader study of the Five Books of Moses, with discussion of every Torah portion, rather than just those that might be particularly difficult or inspiring to LGBT Jews.”

-Jewish Exponent

About the Author

Gregg Drinkwater is Director for Special Projects at Keshet, an organization working for the full inclusion of LGBT Jews in Jewish life.

Joshua Lesser is the rabbi of Bet Haverim in Atlanta, Georgia, and the founder of the Rainbow Center: A Jewish Response to LGBT people and their families.

Judith Plaskow is Professor Emerita of Religious Studies at Manhattan College.

David Shneer is Director of the Program in Jewish Studies and Associate Professor of History at the University of Colorado at Boulder.


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 349 pages
  • Publisher: NYU Press; 1St Edition edition (October 28, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0814720129
  • ISBN-13: 978-0814720127
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 7 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,714,768 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By ProudOfOurPresident on March 11, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a fascinating approach to understanding yet further, the myriad of interpretations that evolve from Torah. Thoughtful, artful, and well-researched, also easily accessible for scholar and student. I highly recommend this for all interested in a new perspective from timeless text.
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By Willemina on November 15, 2013
Format: Hardcover
This book has been allowing me to connect to characters in the Torah like never before. It really has changed how I relate to G-d and my religion.
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