Why does Tractate Yoma read like a story? How did the paytanim, the liturgical poets of the post-Talmud period, turn its text into the most transcendent part of the modern Yom Kippur service?
Dr. Michael Swartz is Professor of Hebrew and Religious Studies in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures at the Melton Center for Jewish Studies at The Ohio State University. He specializes in the cultural history of Judaism in late antiquity, rabbinic studies, early Jewish mysticism and magic, and ritual studies. Professor Swartz is widely published, his work includes: Scholastic Magic: Ritual and Revelation in Early Jewish Mysticism, Avodah: Ancient Poems for Yom Kippur, The Signifying Creator: Nontextual Sources of Meaning in Ancient Judaism, and “Liturgy, Poetry, and the Persistence of Sacrifice”. He also served as the associate editor for Judaica for the second edition of the Encyclopedia of Religion.
View a source sheet for this episode here.
Special thanks to our executive producer, Adina Karp
Music from https://filmmusic.io
"Midnight Tale" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com)
License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)