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Earlier Scholarly Commentaries On The Tales

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Chapter Summary

This chapter presents the earlier scholarly commentaries on the thirteen tales in Rabbi Nahman of Bratslav's Sippurey Maʾasiyot. Martin Buber was the first to introduce Nahman's tales to a Western audience. He did so by retelling the tales in German in Die Geschichten des Rabbi Nachman from 1906. Nahman's tales are, according to Buber, stimulated by Nahman's wish to plant a mystical idea in the heart of his followers. The main criticism against Buber concerns his attempt to portray Nahman as a model for his own early philosophy. However, everybody recognizes Buber's significance for being the first academic ever to direct attention toward Nahman and for making his name known outside Hasidic and scholarly circles. Green's chapter on the tales should not been drawn out of its context which is an analysis of Nahman's life and thought. The chapter presents Green's thoughts on how to approach the tales.

Keywords: Green; Martin Buber; Nahman's tales; philosophy; Rabbi Nahman of Bratslav; Sippurey Maʾasiyot



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