Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Learning as Conversation

"It seems to me that solitary study tends to seek meaning, while study be-havruta (in fellowship) tends to look for implications. When we read by ourselves, and we are satisfied that we have understood, we naturally move on. But when 'learning' is a kind of conversation, then there is always more to be said. The rate of progress is more leisurely, the depth of analysis more penetrating. The modern way of 'study' and traditional Jewish 'learning' are more different, and are different in more ways, than might at first seem the case."

- Robert Goldenberg, "Talmud" in Back to the Sources: Reading the Classic Jewish Texts (Barry W. Holtz, ed.; New York: Simon & Schuster, 1984), 169.

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