Ruth Langer is Professor of Jewish Studies in the Theology Department at Boston College and Associate Director of its Center for Christian-Jewish Learning. She received her Ph.D. in Jewish Liturgy in 1994 and her rabbinic ordination in 1986 from Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati. She is a graduate of Bryn Mawr College and a native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She writes and speaks in two major areas: the development of Jewish liturgy and ritual; and Christian-Jewish relations. Her newest book, Cursing the Christians?: A History of the Birkat HaMinim
(Oxford University Press, December 2011) combines these two interests, tracing the history of a Jewish prayer that was, in its medieval forms, a curse of Christians. This volume traces the transformations in the text and the polemics around it from its putative origins in the early rabbinic period, through its censorship by the church, to its modern transformations into an inoffensive prayer that asks God to rid our world of evil.
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