Major Trends in Yiddish Parody

Roskies, David G.

Yiddish parody was ubiquitous and inescapable. It marked the fault lines of Jewish modernity—the tortuous path of Jewish emancipation and counteremancipation, whether in Poland or across the ocean in North America. It marked both ends of the cultural spectrum—demotic and highbrow—and through its promiscuity, it targeted those aspects of Jewish culture that were most untouchable, sacred, secret. The scholar Dan Miron modeled, as a scholar and teacher, how to construct a theoretical model. For such a model to work it had to work globally, and for a theory to work globally, it had to follow a triadic structure. In the spirit of my topic, therefore, I shall mimic my teacher by distinguishing three "Major Trends in Yiddish Parody," which I am calling Sanctioned Parody, Militant Parody, and Sanctified Parody. Like Miron, I am reserving the best, most complex, and elusive trend for last. Unlike Miron, I am also attempting to map a trajectory—dynamic and dialectical—from medieval to modern times.



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Jewish Quarterly Review

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Academic Units
Jewish Theological Seminary
Published Here
June 27, 2012