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In a contrast to the more monolithic religious history of other lands or geographical entities, the plurality of religious traditions and identities is an essential and distinctive factor in the history of the Holy Land. These identities have usually developed in opposition to one another, and inter-religious relations have more often than not reflected negative -- if not openly hostile -- attitudes to outsiders. Nonetheless, the daily, polemical or intellectual encounter between members of different religious traditions has occasionally led to a particular dynamic that influences the internal evolutions of each community. Sometimes even common interests or patterns have appeared among the different traditions and communities. Through a series of case studies, Sharing the Sacred exemplifies the variety of issues and methods involved in the study of the religious history of the Holy Land.
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Arieh Kofsky is Lecturer in Holy Land Studies at Haifa University. Guy G Stroumsa is Professor of Comparative Religion at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
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