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Potok devotes Chapter 6 to explaining the historical background of Hasidism

Potok devotes Chapter 6 to explaining the historical background of Hasidism

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Potok devotes Chapter 6 to explaining the historical background of Hasidism, of which Danny and his  father are members. Notable in Mr. Malter's discussion of Jewish history is his explanation of pilpul — in his words,  "empty, nonsensical arguments over minute points of the Talmud that have no relationship at all to  the world." Because Mr. Malter is concerned with world events, we expect him to have an  unfavorable opinion of pilpul. Likewise, because Reb Saunders is concerned not with secular ideas  but only with Judaism, we expect him to be very familiar with and practice pilpul. (This expectation is  confirmed in Chapter 7.) Mr. Malter's history lesson in Chapter 6 also concerns Danny, whom Mr. Malter likens to a historical  figure name Maimon. Maimon, eager for knowledge in addition to that contained in the Talmud,  studied many world-famous philosophers. Mr. Malter says of him, "He wanted to know what was 
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