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Paper#1- Imagined Community - Michelle Riesenfeld TA Kevin...

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Michelle Riesenfeld TA: Kevin Mattison Paper#1: Imagined Community “Stories help to create ‘imagined communities’; they articulate a compelling link between people whose actual connections might be tenuous” (Satlow 79). Throughout history, various texts have been written that have created an imagined community of ancient Israel. Although it is unclear what actually occurred during the monarchic period, it is obvious that at some point, a distinctive Jewish identity emerged. These Jews were able to distinguish themselves from their neighbors through their beliefs, practices and stories (Satlow 79). Through stories about the Jewish people, it is apparent that an imagined community developed, in which Jews became a united and unique group different from any other. The story of “The Mother and Her Seven Sons” illuminates the unconditional loyalty of some Jews to their God through courageous acts that exhibit their trust in God’s commands. By maintaining a faithful commitment to God, hopefulness in eternal life, and an understanding of the importance of the Torah, the characters of this story behave in the ways that are expected of them by God alone. This unchanging mentality holds true for the mother and her seven sons, who undergo suffering for their religion and are rewarded by God for doing so.
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