Problemi di convivenza: spunti per un confronto tra il "De idololatria" di Tertulliano e "Mishnah Abodah Zarah"

Giulia Canedi


Between the end of the 2nd c. and the beginning of the 3rd c. CE, early Christianity and rabbinic Judaism – both destined to flourish in the following centuries – developed in a very similar social context and faced the same challenges: coexistence with the dominant, polytheistic Roman empire, which endangered the need, shared by these monotheistic minorities, both for purity and to preserve a specific identity. In response, the Christian Tertullianus and the Jewish rabbinical community of the Mishnah elaborated two texts, the "De Idolatria" and "Mishnah Abodah Zarah", aimed at regulating observants' behavior in many different aspects of daily life. Starting from the discourse on idols found in both texts, this paper explores how profoundly the Christian and rabbinic 'approaches' to coexistence differed, although they originated from a very similar understanding of 'otherness'.

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