The Shabbat Elevator and other Sabbath Subterfuges

By Alan Dundes,

Book cover of The Shabbat Elevator and other Sabbath Subterfuges: An Unorthodox Essay on Circumventing Custom and Jewish Character

Book description

There are literally hundreds if not thousands of books written about Judaism and Jews, but this book is unlike any previously published. It focuses on the topic of 'circumventing custom' with special emphasis on the ingenious ways Orthodox (and other) Jews have devised to avoid breaking the extensive list of…

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Why read it?

1 author picked The Shabbat Elevator and other Sabbath Subterfuges as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Everyone who knows me has at some point had to hear me recount at least one anecdote from this book! Dundes was a professor of folklore, and this book is about all the ways Orthodox Jews navigate the prohibitions of the Sabbath. It includes a lot of incredible history about how technology plays a role in helping people do what they need to do without technically breaking the rules—like the Shabbat elevator in the title, which stops automatically at every floor in a building so that observant Jews don’t have to press a button to operate the elevator (which is…

From Karen's list on human stories about technology.

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