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The Psalms: Hebrew Text & English Translation, With an Introduction and Commentary (The Soncino Books of the Bible) (English and Hebrew Edition) (Hebrew) Hardcover – January 1, 1992
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- Publisher : Soncino Pr Ltd; Revised, Subsequent edition (January 1, 1992)
- Language : English, Hebrew
- Hardcover : 512 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1871055652
- ISBN-13 : 978-1871055658
- Item Weight : 1.6 pounds
- Dimensions : 6 x 1.25 x 8.75 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,044,028 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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A second edition appeared in the 1990s, edited by Rabbi Abraham J. Rosenberg, who has also written for Judaica Press and Artscroll). Unfortunately, instead of updating the historical scholarship, all of that has been removed entirely. The removed material was replaced by additional references to the Midrash literature and medieval Jewish commentators. In a note, the editor talks down to his audience, explaining that removing academic material was necessary because it "diluted" the work. In fact, this material was censored, as part of a long campaign of right-wing Orthodox Jewish authors rewriting Jewish history, to make it conform to modern day Haredi (ultra-Orthodox) ideology. See "Changing the Immutable: How Orthodox Judaism Rewrites Its History" by Marc B. Shapiro for more on that troubling phenomenon.
Nonetheless, both editions of this book function very well as a great repository for English translations of the classic Jewish Bible commentators, which is mostly what I was looking for. As long as the reader is aware that classical interpretations should be read alongside more modern historical analysis - e.g. the JPS Bible Commentary Series, or the Jewish Study Bible, edited by Adele Berlin and Marc Zvi Brettler. - then this series is a great addition to any Jewish household library.