Self-Exposure as Theory: The Double Mark of the Male Jew

Jonathan Boyarin and Daniel Boyarin

in Rhetorics of Self-Making

Published by University of California Press

Published in print February 1995 | ISBN: 9780520087989
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520915251 | DOI:
Self-Exposure as Theory: The Double Mark of the Male Jew

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The first part of this chapter mainly focuses on circumcision and the historical context of early Judaism, hence to the “given”in personal identity. The second, structured in response to a concise and cogent statement about pluralism and “strong identity” by a leading political theorist, draws largely on contemporary personal vignettes and has more to say about the head covering. The choice of anecdotes and contexts within a broad sweep of Jewish textuality and experience is largely intended to subvert the common assumption that the given in identity is linked to domination, while the chosen necessarily implies free choice, noncoercive of others.

Keywords: circumcision; early Judaism; male identity; Jewish male; Jewish textuality

Chapter.  11894 words. 

Subjects: Anthropology

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