Crisis discourse and framework transition in Maimonides' Mishneh Torah

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In his works from the past decade, Menachem Fisch offered an analysis of a crucial distinctionbetween two modes of rationalized transformation: an intra-framework transformation and an inter-framework one, the latter entailing a revolutionary shift of the framework itself. In this article, Ianalyze the attempt to produce such a framework transition in the tradition of Jewish Halakha (i.e., Jewish Law) by one of the key figures in its history, Moses Maimonides (1135-1204), and to explore how this transition was rationalized and promoted by the utilization of crisis discourse. Using discourse analysis, I analyze the introduction to Maimonides' great legal code, Mishneh Torah, and explore the modes by which he sought to establish, install and stabilize a homogenous and centralistic legal order at the center of which will lie one - that is, his own - Halakhic book.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)664-680
Number of pages17
JournalOpen Philosophy
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2020


  • Jewish Halakha
  • Maimonides
  • Medieval Judaism
  • Menachem Fisch
  • Mishneh Torah
  • crisis discourse
  • framework transition


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