Rabbinic Discourse, Law and the Culture of Opposition

A style of discourse associated with a rabbinic tradition in Judaism exemplifies a core oppositional process of the persistent identity system of Jewish culture. Based in an interpretation of law as represented by Torah and Talmud, this style of discourse undermines central reifications of the Greco-Roman-Christian tradition, which constitutes the historical framework for contemporary Western cultural hegemony. A central precept is that identity is contingent and not, as in the predominant Western tradition, something that is natural, transcendent, and absolute. The implicit critique of Western identity allows rabbinic discourse to deconstruct and challenge the authority of law and governmentality.