The Promise.

“It's always easier to learn something than to use what you've learned": First Edition of Chaim Potok's The Chosen; Inscribed by Him

The Promise.

POTOK, Chaim.


Item Number: 79898

New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1969.

First edition of the author’s sequel to The Chosen. Octavo, original cloth. Presentation copy, inscribed and dated by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Hugh and Marilyn Nissenson, Thanks for a beautiful evening! Chaim Potok Nov. 20, 1973.” Review copy with the slip laid in, near fine in a very good dust jacket. Jacket design by Paul Bacon.

"A superb mirror of a place, a time, and a group of people who capture our immediate interest and hold it tightly" (The Philadelphia Inquirer). Potok said of this novel, "In The Promise the confrontation is between a fundamentalist religion and another gift to us from our general civilization. A gift right from the very heart of that civilization developed in the universities of western Europe in the last century. A methodology we call scientific text criticism." This form of Talmudic analysis is also called the historical method. Of course, Danny's passion for Freudian psychology also represents a "gift right from the heart of [Western] civilization." Potok pointed out that Reuven does not embrace the historical method unreservedly, nor does Danny embrace Freudian psychology unreservedly. Rather, "They performed the same act of selective affinity that all of us do when we encounter an alien culture. We pick and choose those elements of that alien culture toward which we feel a measure of affinity. Then, adopting those elements, we reject the others, precisely as Danny Saunders does with Freud and Reuven Malter does with scientific text criticism."

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