The Grammar of God: A Journey into the Words and Worlds of the Bible by Aviya Kushner

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Read The Grammar of God: A Journey into the Words and Worlds of the Bible Online Free - Aviya Kushner grew up in a Hebrew-speaking family, reading the Bible in the original Hebrew and debating its meaning over the dinner table. She knew much of it by heart—and was therefore surprised when, while getting her MFA at the University of Iowa, she took the novelist Marilynne Robinson’s class on the Old Testament and discovered she barely recognized the text she thought she knew so well. From differences in the Ten Commandments to a less ambiguous reading of the creation story to a new emphasis on the topic of slavery, the English translation often felt like another book entirely from the one she had grown up with.

Kushner began discussing the experience with Robinson, who became a mentor, and her interest in the differences between the ancient language and the modern one gradually became an obsession. She began what became a ten-year project of reading different versions of the Hebrew Bible in English and traveling the world in the footsteps of the great biblical translators, trying to understand what compelled them to take on a lifetime project that was often considered heretical and in some cases resulted in their deaths.

In this eye-opening chronicle, Kushner tells the story of her vibrant relationship to the Bible, and along the way illustrates how the differences in translation affect our understanding of our culture’s most important written work. A fascinating look at language and the beliefs we hold most dear, The Grammar of God is also a moving tale about leaving home and returning to it, both literally and through reading.

Title : The Grammar of God: A Journey into the Words and Worlds of the Bible
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 0385520824
Edition Language : English
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 272 pages


❀Aimee❀ Just one more page... rated it ★★★★☆

June 20, 2015

The book wasn't exactly like I expected, but I enjoyed it. While there certainly was discussion about Hebrew grammar and differences between the Hebrew and current versions, the book was much more than this. This was also a memoir of the author's life and family. It was her musings on what faith m...

Tim rated it ★★★★☆

May 30, 2015

The English Old Testament is a source of inspiration for millions of people. But what if the English translation deviates from the original Hebrew meaning throughout the text? That’s the premise of Aviya Kushner’s new book The Grammar of God: a Journey Into the Words and Worlds of the Bible. Kushn...

Marlee rated it ★★★★★

November 11, 2015

Sometimes a good book changes the way you see the world for a few days, and sometimes a really good book changes the way you see the world for a long time. This book knit some important things together, and in so doing, slipped me an important puzzle piece of understanding which I will carry with...

Moshe rated it ★★★★☆

May 05, 2017

I really liked the combination of a book highlighting differences between the original Hebrew bible and it's many translations which the author researched for years, woven with her own memories of her childhood, family, studies and the city and faith she was brought up in. On the other hand, if I...

Irena rated it ★★★☆☆

August 17, 2017

This relatively short book is a peculiar mix of personal memoir, insights into what is lost or modified in the Hebrew Bible's translation to English, and the history of Hebrew Bible's translations to English and other languages. The story continuously jumps between these aspects, but lacks depth...

Christina rated it ★★★★★

May 18, 2016

I loved this book! Could hardly put it down, in fact. Raised in an Orthodox household, speaking Hebrew at home and school, Kushner first encounters the Bible in English in graduate school, and is repeatedly surprised by the translations and how they impact understanding of the text. She deals most...

Aryeh rated it ★★★☆☆

October 07, 2016

This one was a disappointment, mostly because I was expecting something completely different. The book is billed as 'a journey into words and worlds of the Bible,' and starts off strong discussing the issues with translations, but ends up really being nearly completely a memoir. The author writes...

Nathan rated it ★★★★★

September 15, 2016

For many readers the thought of reading a book on biblical grammar and the importance of language in shaping how we view scripture would not be an appealing thought. Such readers would miss a truly lovely and thoughtful book, though, in that the author manages to make such subjects warm and invit...

Andrea rated it ★★★★★

September 20, 2015

[ I received this book free from the publisher through NetGalley. I thank them for their generousity. In exchange, I was simply asked to write an honest review, and post it. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Pa...

Simcha rated it ★★★★☆

May 18, 2016

By the author's own admission, Aviya Kushner's The Grammar of God was written as a personal rather than an academic work. And the result, while it is unquestionably learned, gains a lot of power from the author's emotional relationship to the study of the Hebrew Bible and her experiences with it...

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