Between Alexandria and Jerusalem
Between Alexandria and Jerusalem examines the dynamics of Hellenistic and Jewish cultures. It begins by looking at the changes in mentality as reflected in papyri of Roman Egypt, the birth of a qualified audience looking for teachers and preachers and requiring a new culture.
This same phenomenon emerged in Rabbinic society. Rabbinic literature was different not only from the Bible, but from Alexandrian exegesis as well. However, Alexandrian exegesis paved the way for rabbinic Midrash.
The book defies the understanding of culture as a combination of various petrified 'patterns,' Jewish and Hellenic. It also challenges the idea of ‘separate’ Jewish cultures. Rather, it endeavors to trace tremendous cultural changes. It was exactly these changes that connected one period to another, one literature to another, and thus embodied continuity and unity of culture.