By Steven Daniel Sacks
Pirke de-Rabbi Eliezer represents a overdue improvement in ""midrash"", or classical rabbinic interpretation, that has enlightened, intrigued and annoyed students of Jewish tradition for the previous centuries. Pirke de-Rabbi Eliezer??s problem to scholarship comprises such concerns because the work??s authorship and authenticity, an asymmetrical literary constitution in addition to its ambiguous dating with various rabbinic, Islamic and Hellenistic works of interpretation. This cluster of matters has contributed to the confusion concerning the work??s constitution, origins and id. Midrash and Multiplicity addresses the issues raised via this equivocal paintings, and makes use of Pirke de-Rabbi Eliezer so as to investigate the character of ""midrash"", and the renewal of Jewish interpretive tradition, in the course of its transition to the medieval period of the early ""Geonim"".
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Extra info for Midrash and Multiplicity: Pirke De-Rabbi Eliezer and the Renewal of Rabbinic Interpretive Culture (Studia Judaica 48)
As we'll See shortly, it turns out to be an instructive example of a complex adaptive system. To make it more concrete, let's suppose that there are one hundred people in Santa Fe who, like Arthur, are keen to go to the E1 Farol on Thursdays. Space is limited, and everyone enjoys themselves if the bar is not too crowded. A crowd beyond sixty is thought to be excessive. The tricky thing is that there's 110 way of telling beforehand how many will come. A person simply goes if he expects fewer than sixty to turn up or stays home if he expects more than sixty to show.
In a word. strategies need to be coevolutionary. It's interesting to note that Hermann Haken, founder of the field of synergetics, believes that the kinds of pattern recognition used in chess are closely associated with pattern formation. Synergetics is a general theory of self-organization. 1 (near the start of the book). Interestingly, neither birds nor antelopes can be perceived all the time. After a while, one image fades away, allowing the brain to perceive the other interpretation. Some kind of oscillatory process sets in.
The emphasis switches to productivity, marginal improvements, and cost control. Saturated markets breed numerous competitors, and unit profits are thin. The classical zero-profit equilibrium of economic theory is a reasonable approximation of the ultimate dead-end state of this frozen world. For the firms involved, death is imminent. Without fresh innovation, diminishing returns signal that the market and its customer base have matured and that the risk of extinction is growing. Our analysis reveals two economic worlds: the seemingly static one (stasis) is heavier on resources, lighter on know-how, and sub- Chance and Necessity 39 ject to diminishing returns; the dynamic one (morphogenesis) is lighter on resources, heavier on know-how, and subject to increasing returns.