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Life Arts

Rembrandt, Jews and Jesus: Putting Judaism Back in the Picture

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Images are powerful in defining reality for the viewer. The pervasive Christianization of the Jewish Jesus in classical artworks fed the illusion that Jesus was of a different religion and ethnicity than the others -- the Jews -- when in fact they were all Semites of the same Jewish faith. To emphasize the false distinction, Jews were depicted in classical artworks as dark and menacing. See Peter Paul Reubens' Tribute Money (1512) and Albrecht Durer's 16-century painting, Christ Among the Doctors (Pharisees). By adding the charge of "Christ Killers" to this distorted and ugly imagery, church leaders sought to forge a final separation between Judaism and Christianity.

This exhibit does not suggest that new renditions of classical artworks are in any way better than the originals. Obviously, the Medieval and Renaissance painters were extraordinary artists; their artworks will stand forever as masterpieces. The primary intention is to address the omissions and misrepresentations of biblical history in the depictions and content, which have had enormous impact in dividing Christianity and Judaism.

For more information about the exhibit visit here .

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Bernard Starr, PhD is a psychologist,journalist, and professor emeritus at the City University of New York, Brooklyn College. He is also the Main United Nations representative for the Institute of Global Education (IGE) that founded Radio for (more...)

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The original and new renditions placed side by sid... by Bernard Starr on Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013 at 9:09:05 AM
Artists are invited to submit new renditions of cl... by Bernard Starr on Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013 at 9:27:38 AM
among North Europeans would look like a North Euro... by mhenriday on Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013 at 12:48:21 PM
Lets not forget that the "Chief Priests and Scribe... by Toby Seiler on Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013 at 1:48:41 PM
Jesus, the Aramaic Galilean could have looked lik... by Yoni Netzer on Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013 at 9:10:02 PM
So, in order to display the shameless distortions ... by Robert S. Becker on Wednesday, Aug 21, 2013 at 1:51:16 PM
Mr Starr apparently does not care for God's anger&... by Mark Sashine on Wednesday, Aug 21, 2013 at 3:27:03 PM
but I want it known far and wide I won't buy Mr. S... by Robert S. Becker on Wednesday, Aug 21, 2013 at 4:30:26 PM
Maybe one day Bernard Starr will enlighten himself... by Bill Johnson on Saturday, Aug 24, 2013 at 7:07:12 AM
I agree with the author that Jesus was a Jew until... by Mahalingam Santhri N on Sunday, Aug 25, 2013 at 4:16:09 AM