Friday, February 21, 2014

A Page (or Two) of Talmud: Part 2

An Introduction to Talmud Study: First of all, Abq Jew sincerely thanks and wishes mazeltov! to the twenty or so students who participated in his Talmud class at this year's very successful A Taste of Honey (see The Talmud @ A Taste of Honey).

A Map of the Talmud Page:     1. Mishna     2. Gemara     3. Rashi     4. Tosafot

Abq Jew prepared a ton of material for the class - and we got through perhaps a third of it. So, over the next many weeks, Abq Jew will (בלי נדר) attempt to provide a series of small, chunk-size portions of the course material. (But if you'd like to speed ahead - click here for the Teacher's Guide.)

For modern, English-speaking Talmud students, there is (in Abq Jew's humble opinion) no finer resource than the new Koren Talmud Bavli.

The Koren website says:
The Koren Talmud Bavli is a groundbreaking edition of the Talmud that will change forever the way students study, debate, and experience this central text. 
The Koren Talmud Bavli fuses the innovative design of Koren Publishers Jerusalem with the incomparable scholarship of Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz to offer a Talmud that empowers beginning and advanced students alike to participate in the dynamic process of Talmud study.
The Jewish Chronicle says the arrival of the Koren Talmud must be “the Judaica publishing event of the year. It combines the production quality for which the Jerusalem-based publishers are renowned with the pioneering commentary and translation of Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz.” 
Significantly, the Talmud text (as well as Rashi’s commentary) is printed with vowels and punctuated, making it far easier for students to follow. 
The translation is clearly laid out in paragraphs rather than dense columns of print and amplified with explanations, while the extensive English commentary has separate sections summarising points of Jewish law, examining the language and giving historical and other background. 
Koren is steadily publishing one volume of the Talmud Bavli at a time, gradually completing the set. These volumes are currently available:
1.  Berachot
2.  Shabbat 1
3.  Shabbat 2
4.  Eruvim 1
5.  Eruvim 2
6.  Pesachim 1
7.  Pesachim 2
8.  Shekalim
9.  Yoma
10. Sukka
Note to Prospective Talmud Students: Abq Jew is currently learning Shekalim. If you would like to learn along - please contact him!

Support Abq Jew! Buy your Koren Talmud here!

For background - in addition to Abq Jew's Teacher's Guide, which includes a pageful of Talmud resources - Koren will soon publish a new, revised edition of Rabbi Steinsaltz's Reference Guide to the Talmud.

The Koren website tells us:
A revision of the excellent Random House Reference Guide, which was a translation and expansion of the מדריך לתלמוד by Rav Steinsaltz Even-Israel, the Reference Guide is divided into three sections: Historical Background, Talmud Study, and Halakha. 
Although it is the ideal companion volume to the Koren Talmud Bavli, as the translation of terms largely corresponds to the language employed in the translation of the Talmud, it is not limited to that niche. 
It constitutes one of the cornerstones of any Jewish library as a fundamental reference for beginners and accomplished students of the Talmud alike. 
There are several innovations in this revised edition designed to render the Reference Guide more accessible to those not conversant in Hebrew or Aramaic. 
The sections Mishnaic Methodology, Principles of Talmudic Hermeneutics, and Halakhic Concepts and Terms, which appeared in the previous edition in Hebrew alphabetical order, appear in this volume in topical order. 
An index of Hebrew terms appears at the end of the volume to enable one seeking a Hebrew term to locate the relevant entry.

Shabbat Shalom, Albuquerque!
Good Shabbos, New Mexico!
הדרן עליך תלמוד בּבלי קורן ירושׁלים

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