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    Diaspora: Jews Amidst Greeks and Romans (Hardback) By (author) Erich S. Gruen


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    DescriptionWhat was life like for Jews settled throughout the Mediterranean world of Classical antiquity - and what place did Jewish communities have in the diverse civilization dominated by Greeks and Romans? In a probing account of the Jewish diaspora in the four centuries from Alexander the Great's conquest of the Near East to the Roman destruction of the Jewish Temple in 70 c.e., Erich Gruen reaches often surprising conclusions. By the first century of our era, Jews living abroad far outnumbered those living in Palestine and had done so for generations. Substantial Jewish communities were found throughout the Greek mainland and Aegean islands, Asia Minor, the Tigris-Euphrates valley, Egypt, and Italy. Focusing especially on Alexandria, Greek cities in Asia Minor, and Rome, Gruen explores the lives of these Jews: the obstacles they encountered, the institutions they established, and their strategies for adjustment. He also delves into Jewish writing in this period, teasing out how Jews in the diaspora saw themselves. There emerges a picture of a Jewish minority that was at home in Greco-Roman cities: subject to only sporadic harassment; its intellectuals immersed in Greco-Roman culture while refashioning it for their own purposes; exhibiting little sign of insecurity in an alien society; and demonstrating both a respect for the Holy Land and a commitment to the local community and Gentile government. Gruen's innovative analysis of the historical and literary record alters our understanding of the way this vibrant minority culture engaged with the dominant Classical civilization.

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  • Full bibliographic data for Diaspora

    Jews Amidst Greeks and Romans
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Erich S. Gruen
    Physical properties
    Format: Hardback
    Number of pages: 384
    Width: 163 mm
    Height: 240 mm
    Thickness: 33 mm
    Weight: 710 g
    ISBN 13: 9780674007505
    ISBN 10: 0674007506

    BIC subject category V2: HBG
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: T5.1
    BIC E4L: HIS
    BIC subject category V2: HBLA
    LC subject heading: ,
    BIC subject category V2: HBJF, JFSR1
    LC subject heading: ,
    BIC geographical qualifier V2: 1QDA
    DC21: 909.04924
    LC subject heading:
    BISAC V2.8: HIS002000
    LC subject heading:
    Thema V1.0: NHB, JBSR, NHF, NHC
    Illustrations note
    Imprint name
    Publication date
    05 June 2002
    Publication City/Country
    Cambridge, Mass
    Review quote
    [Gruen's] book reminds us that, remarkably, there was a time in history when there was no anti-Semitism. Its virulent strain only broke out in the terrible race riot in Alexandria of 38 CE, when the Romans were already ruling the city and the Jews and the Egyptians were vying for their favor--and their jobs. Gruen's fine book is obviously the labor of a lifetime.--Erich Segal"Times Literary Supplement" (12/06/2002)