Thursday, August 23, 2012

A Comprehensive Volume

Peter Cole is a prolific translator of Hebrew and Arabic texts, and he brings to his translations the deft hand of a man who writes his own English language poetry.  So it should be no surprise that his The Poetry of Kabbalah: Mystical Verse from the Jewish Tradition is a very readable and accessible volume.

Cole wants to reach a wide audience, and walks the line between an academic and popular treatment of the subject.  Different topics are discussed before texts are introduced, giving the reader a key into the significance of the translated verse.  For those who wish to delve into the details of the translations, and further historical information, there is an extensive notes section (which occupies about a fourth of the book).

So, Cole has compiled a comprehensive volume on the poetry of Jewish mysticism that should satisfy almost any interested reader.

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