An intriguing verse appears in the book of Psalms: “וְיַ֤יִן ׀ יְשַׂמַּ֬ח לְֽבַב־אֱנ֗וֹשׁ wine cheers the hearts of men” (Psalm 104:15), which is a felicitous Biblical expression, although how do the rabbis of the Babylonian Talmud use it? For the 73rd episode of The Jewish Drinking Show, Professor AJ Berkovitz joins the show to discuss this topic.
Dr. AJ Berkovitz serves as an Assistant Professor of Ancient Judaism and Liturgy at HUC-JIR in New York. He received his Ph.D. in Religion from Princeton University, where he completed his dissertation on The Life of Psalms in Late Antiquity, and a B.A./M.A. in Jewish Studies/Hebrew Bible from Yeshiva University. He is the author of articles that have appeared in both academic and popular publications. His current book project, The Life of Psalms in Jewish Late Antiquity, describes historical and cultural developments that rest at the intersection of Psalm reception and materiality, translation, liturgy, piety and magic.
If you want to follow along, you can check out the Talmudic references here.
The episode is available in both podcast format on either your favorite podcast player or below (please let me know if you have any issues with the podcast, as this episode is the first since switching podcast hosts), as well as video format: