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Targum Pseudo-Jonathan And Anti-Islamic Polemic

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Chapter Summary

This chapter argues that it is probably a mistake to regard Targum Pseudo-Jonathan (Ps-Jon) as a document engaged in dispute with Islam. Indeed, the Targum seems to betray only sparse and superficial knowledge of it, and detailed examination of relevant verses suggests that they are simply and easily explained without reference to Islam. The chapter then turns to Ohana's essay, which deals with Ps-Jon of Genesis 21:9-21. In a recent study of Ps-Jon on Gen. 27, the author has argued that generalized claims for Ps-Jon's direct dependence on PRE and other late midrashim are far less substantial and well-founded than they might appear. A favourable view of Ishmael is also given by Ps-Jon of Gen. 25:8, which records that he repented at the time of Abraham's death, and by Gen. 50:1, where the house of Ishmael attend Jacob on his death-bed.

Keywords: Abraham; anti-Islamic polemic; Genesis; Ishmael; M. Ohana; midrashic collection; Pseudo-Jonathan; Targum



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