by Rabbi Gil Student
The recent biography by Yael Unterman, Nehama Leibowitz: Teacher and Bible Scholar is fascinating, exhaustive and thought-provoking. The book is divided into three parts: Nehama’s life, her beliefs and her methodology. In each section, Unterman provides extensive background and then takes you through the subject with copious references to published materials and the seemingly endless interviews that she conducted. If anything, you can say that the book was too researched because there are so many people quoted with stories and facts. I particularly liked that aspect – the many stories and interviews – because it really brought Nehama to life. On her own, she was very modest and did not give away too much about herself. However, through extensive research, Unterman was able to put together the bits and pieces Nehama had told to students over the years, often accompanied with a story about how the information was revealed.
The book raises many interesting questions about Nehama (that’s what she liked to be called), and I don’t think one blog post will suffice. This is the first in a series of planned posts on issues raised in the book.
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