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The Book of Psalms: A Translation with Commentary Paperback – Deckle Edge, October 19, 2009
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“You think you know these texts . . . until you read Alter, who reignites their beauty in bracing and unexpected ways.”
- Malcolm Jones, Newsweek
“Alter is musically and poetically sensitive.... [He] takes us back to the essence of the meaning.”
- James Wood, The New Yorker
“Extraordinary.... We never forget, with Alter's Psalms, that the text we are reading is the work of human hands―not Holy Writ, but something at once less and more than that, great poetry.”
- Adam Kirsch, New Republic
“[A] goldmine for anyone struggling to understand this most perplexing and important of fields. . . . Dissociative disorders are frequently described as ‘hidden disorders,’ in part because even in plain sight their signs and symptoms are subtle and nuanced. That elusiveness is perhaps the most daunting challenge to developing clinicians . . . . I know of no other work on dissociation that contributes so much in this regard. . . . [N]o one can gainsay the invaluable contribution this treatise has made in illuminating diverse dissociative symptomatology in the complex clinical contexts in which it is most often encountered, and too often overlooked.”
- Harold Bloom, New York Review of Books
“Reading this book feels like a friendly, usable bridge for any therapist interested in a more complete understanding of psychodynamic concepts, the enduring effects of developmental trauma, and how to engage with patients who have a fundamental fear of being visible to us and to themselves. . . . Despite its title and emphasis on treating dissociative disorders, this book should also be read as a significant contribution to the general understanding of psychopathology and psychological defense.”
- Barbara Berman, San Francisco Chronicle
“Chefetz shows by example that we can reach beyond the limits of these disabling disorders. . . . It is clear from case illustrations that Chefetz has a special talent for working with complex conditions, as well guiding less experienced clinicians. Reading this book, I felt the comfort of talking with a mentor about my own difficult or confusing cases. . . . Few resources on this topic rival this well-written book. Without hesitation, I recommend it to all clinicians who work with complex disorders.”
- Mark Doty, Los Angeles Times
“Avoiding the density of a traditional textbook, Intensive Psychotherapy for Persistent Dissociative Processes takes an intimate look at the techniques that the author incorporates within his own practice. It couples this with a presentation style accessible for professional readership of diverse experience and methodology. . . . [A] highly illuminative book for how treatment for dissociative processes is unique . . . . For those therapists who are currently or expecting to encounter these processes in their work, the book is an expansive resource.”
- Walter Brueggemann, Christian Century
“[This book] does a fantastic job of explaining the dissociative process of patients who have struggled with connecting their painful history to their current reality. . . . [S]uited for a student in training, a mental health professional, or a layman with prior knowledge of the field of psychiatry and psychotherapy. . . [A] great book for professionals working with clients who dissociate. . . . Chefetz offers an inside look at dissociative processes and stimulates the reader’s mind on how to intervene, heal, and care for someone struggling with dissociation.”
- Jewish Book World
About the Author
Robert Alter's translation of the Hebrew Bible, the magnificent capstone to a lifetime of distinguished scholarly work, has won the PEN Center Literary Award for Translation. His immense achievements in scholarship ranging from the eighteenth-century European novel to contemporary Hebrew and American literature earned Alter the Robert Kirsch Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Los Angeles Times. A member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Philosophical Society, Alter is the Class of 1937 Professor of Hebrew and Comparative Literature at the University of California, Berkeley.
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So the kindle edition was poorly formatted; you are not here reviewing the quality of e-books, you are here reviewing the book, not the delivery system. Some people gave Kindle one star and the book five stars.
A friend is Lubavitcher and a rabbi; his comment was interesting, excellent translation, but Alter denies that David wrote all the psalms so my friend lost interest. I get that, Fundamentalism shows up in all religions.
With that same friend i pointed out that Alter translates translates a word in Hebrew in Psalm 23 differently than is the usual usage. He did not; according to Alter the word in the 23rd Psalm does not mean anointed , as in He anointed my head with oil. First Alter points out that the word used used in Samuel when Samuel anoints first Saul and then David is a different word and that the word in the 23rd Psalm means something along the lines of luxurious rubbed olive oil into my hair. It is after all a Psalm of abundance.
Because I can read and understand a lot of the Hebrew I must say to the person who complained that Alter compressed the English in order to make it more like the Hebrew. It is a book of examination, not a get closer to your G-d book.
In Alters translation while some of the poetry is lost, the cadence is much closer to the Hebrew. Yea though i walk through the valley of the shadow of death in Hebrew is only two words, lech tsalmovit. In poetry cadence counts. Alter has also written two books on understanding the bible, one is about understanding narrative and the other is about uderstanding the poetry.