The Saint of Beersheba
Weingrod presents an anthropological study of the development of a new Jewish saint, or zaddik, in Israel and of the annual pilgrimage to his enshrined grave by thousands of North African Jews. It is the fascinating story of how Rabbi Chayim Chouri, an aged Tunisian rabbi, became famed as the “Saint of Beersheba,” after his death in the 1950s. The author focuses upon the meaning of this event in the lives of the participants, and interprets the relevance of mystical-religious traditions to present-day Israeli society, politics, and culture. It includes a photographic essay that brilliantly evokes the joyful events that occur during the ritual and festivity of the pilgrimage.
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activities African Jews appear arak Ashkelon attend Baba Sali Baba Sali's became become Beersheba cemetery behavior belief Ben-Ami Bilu blessing candles carnival ceremonies of ethnic chief rabbi Chouri family crowd cultural dance Deshen early ethnic group ethnic renewal food and drink friends Gabes gather Hebrew hilluloth holy places immigrants Israel Israeli Israeli society Jerba Jerusalem Jewish community join liminality marabouts memorial celebration mimouna miracles Moroccan and Tunisian Moroccan Jews Morocco Muslim mystical Negev North African North African Jews occasion organized participants particular performance pilgrimage pilgrims pray prayers Rabbi Chayim Chouri Rabbi Chouri Rabbi Chouri's grave Rabbi Chouri's hillula Rabbi David u'Moshe rabbi's grave rabbi's sons recite ritual roles sacred saints Sallnow script Shimon bar Yochai shrine sing social stage studies synagogue take place themes thousands of persons throughout the day tomb traditional Turner Weingrod West Indian women zaddik zaddik's grave zaddikim