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The Giving of Charity in Jewish Law: For What Purpose and Toward What Goal?

By Michael J. Broyde

KTAV Publishing House, Inc., Yeshiva University Press, October 2009

The author argues that while there is a biblical mandate to give charity, there is some disagreement over basic halakhic issues. He discusses fundamental questions over who may receive charity, how much money each person must give as charity, and other essential questions about the nature of tzedakah. He concludes that the very parameters of giving charity have changed during the last century in America since the government of the United States provides for the basic social welfare of its citizens. The tension between the ideal of charity, which is to give as much as one can to as many in need, with the reality of life, which is that money is quite limited in supply and none of us really has enough of it, is a central theme of Jewish law√Ę??s approach to charity. The author scrutinizes this balance in light of the social, economic, political, and religious reality of modern American Orthodox life.

Topic: Halakha, Tzedakah (Charity), Jewish Law, Charitable Giving, Orthodox Judaism, Jewish Text, Ideology, Social Issues, Modernity, Jewish Thought

Name of Publication: Toward a Renewed Ethic of Jewish Philanthropy

Editor: Hirt, Robert S. , Prager, Yossi

Page Number(s): 241-274

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Genre: Book Chapter

Coverage: United States

Identifier: ISBN 978-1-60280-137-0

Language: English

Copyright Holder: Publisher

Copyright Information: Download for personal use, freely distribute link

Bibliographic Information:
Broyde, Michael J. The Giving of Charity in Jewish Law: For What Purpose and Toward What Goal?. Toward a Renewed Ethic of Jewish Philanthropy. KTAV Publishing House, Inc.,Yeshiva University Press. October 2009: 241-274. http://www.bjpa.org/Publications/details.cfm?PublicationID=8854


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