This newly revised all-encompassing textbook is a guide to the history, beliefs and practice of Judaism. Beginning with the ancient Near Eastern background, it covers early Israelite history, the emergence of classical rabbinic literature and the rise of medieval Judaism in Islamic and Christian lands. It also includes the early modern period and the development of Jewry in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Extracts from primary sources are used throughout to enliven the narrative and provide concrete examples of the rich variety of Jewish civilization.

Specially designed to assist learning, Judaism:

Introduces texts and commentaries, including the Hebrew Bible, rabbinic texts, mystical literature, Jewish philosophy and Jewish theology

Provides the skills necessary to understand these step-by-step with the help of a companion website

Explains how to interpret the major events in nearly four thousand years of Jewish history

Supports study with discussion questions on the central historical and religious issues, and includes key reading for each chapter, an extensive glossary and index

Illustrates the development of Judaism, its concepts, observances and culture, with maps, photos, paintings and engravings

Links each chapter to a free companion website at www.routledge.com/cw/cohnsherbok which provides things to think about, things to do and tips for teachers as well as other online resources

part I|345 pages


chapter 1|6 pages

Ancient Mesopotamian civilization

chapter 3|4 pages

Israelite monotheism and law

chapter 1|7 pages

The patriarchs

chapter 5|5 pages


chapter 6|5 pages

Conquest and settlement

chapter 7|7 pages

The rise of monarchy

chapter 8|4 pages

Solomon and the divided monarchy

chapter 9|6 pages

Kings of Israel and Judah

chapter 11|7 pages

Ahaz and Hezekiah

chapter 12|5 pages

From Manasseh to Babylonian captivity

chapter 13|5 pages

Aftermath of the Fall of Judah

chapter 14|5 pages

Return and restoration

chapter 15|6 pages

The rise of Hellenism

chapter 16|6 pages

Judaism under Hellenism

chapter 17|5 pages

The kingship of Herod

chapter 18|5 pages

Rebellion against Rome

chapter 19|5 pages

The rise of Christianity

chapter 20|4 pages

Roman Jewish War and aftermath

chapter 21|7 pages

Jews in the Roman Empire

chapter 22|6 pages

Jews in Babylonia

chapter 23|4 pages

Rabbinic scriptural interpretation

chapter 24|4 pages

Rabbinic theology

chapter 25|4 pages

Judaism under Islamic rule

chapter 26|7 pages


chapter 28|11 pages

Jewry in Christian Europe in the Middle Ages

chapter 29|6 pages

The Jews in Christian Spain

chapter 30|3 pages

Dispersion of the Marranos

chapter 31|5 pages

Early medieval thought

chapter 32|5 pages

The philosophy of Maimonides

chapter 33|8 pages

Jewish philosophy after Maimonides

chapter 34|7 pages

Rabbinic mysticism

chapter 35|3 pages

The Hasidei Ashkenaz

chapter 36|5 pages

The emergence of Kabbalah

chapter 37|9 pages

Jews in the Ottoman empire

chapter 38|5 pages

The Shabbatean movement

chapter 39|8 pages

Jewry in Eastern and Western Europe

chapter 40|7 pages

The rise of the Hasidic movement

chapter 41|6 pages

The status of Jewry in Europe

chapter 42|5 pages

Jews in Eastern Europe

chapter 44|10 pages

The origins of reform

chapter 45|5 pages

The rise of anti-Semitism

chapter 46|6 pages

The Zionist movement

chapter 48|10 pages

The Nazi regime

chapter 49|7 pages

The death camps

chapter 50|7 pages

Jewry after the Holocaust

chapter 51|9 pages

The State of Israel

chapter 52|5 pages

The Palestinian–Israeli conflict

chapter 53|6 pages

The ongoing struggle

chapter 54|5 pages

Women in modern Judaism

chapter 55|6 pages

Jews and culture

chapter 56|6 pages

Jews in medicine and science

chapter 57|4 pages

The future of Judaism

part II|245 pages

Belief and Practice

chapter 58|6 pages

The unity of God

chapter 59|8 pages

Divine transcendence and immanence

chapter 60|8 pages


chapter 61|6 pages

Omnipotence and omniscience

chapter 62|6 pages


chapter 63|7 pages


chapter 64|8 pages

Divine goodness

chapter 65|6 pages


chapter 66|7 pages

Torah and Mitzvot

chapter 67|16 pages


chapter 68|6 pages

Sin and repentance

chapter 69|6 pages

The chosen people

chapter 70|6 pages

The Promised Land

chapter 71|5 pages


chapter 72|6 pages

Love and fear of God

chapter 73|7 pages


chapter 74|6 pages

The afterlife

chapter 75|8 pages

Community life

chapter 76|6 pages

Jewish education

chapter 77|8 pages

The Jewish calendar

chapter 78|5 pages

Places of worship

chapter 79|6 pages


chapter 80|7 pages

The Sabbath

chapter 81|6 pages

Special Sabbaths

chapter 82|8 pages

Pilgrim festivals

chapter 83|7 pages

New Year and Day of Atonement

chapter 84|6 pages

The Days of Joy

chapter 85|5 pages


chapter 86|5 pages

Life cycle events

chapter 87|7 pages


chapter 88|5 pages


chapter 89|5 pages

The home

chapter 90|4 pages

Dietary laws

chapter 91|5 pages

Death and mourning

chapter 92|8 pages

Jewish ethics

chapter 93|12 pages