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  • Author or Editor: Shlomo Zuckier x
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The Babylonian Talmud conceptualizes the proscription against consuming the tereifah/mauled animal (Exod 22:30) and reformulates it as a rule prohibiting any entity that has exited hutz limhitzato, “outside its [proper] bound.” Through a close analysis of the half-dozen sugyot that utilize this rule and their precursors, this article considers the gradual development of this conceptual category throughout the strata of rabbinic literature, concluding that the fullest development of this concept is manifest in the Stam (anonymous layer of the Babylonian Talmud). The developed conception behind the rule can be best understood in light of Mary Douglas’s conception of “matter out of place.” The rabbis make a Douglas-style argument, that, at times, the location of matter outside its proper place suffices to explain an item’s prohibited status. An appendix demonstrates that a seeming early appearance of the term hutz limhitzato in Mekhilta de-Rashbi is of medieval, rather than Tannaitic, provenance.

In: Journal of Ancient Judaism