by Rahel Lerner

Teaching Daughters Torah

Talmud and romance in medieval France

In the series Rashi’s Daughters (Plume, $15), Maggie Anton sets herself the daunting challenge of bringing to life the words and world of Rabbi Solomon ben Isaac, known by the acronym Rashi, probably the most famous and revered of medieval Jewish scholars. A vintner in 11th century France, Rashi is known to us through his groundbreaking and extensive commentaries on the Torah and Talmud, which contain a few tantalizing references to his personal life — the foods he ate, the clothes he wore. From these and other contemporary texts, Anton has found the threads which give historical texture to her novels.

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