Main Divisions of the two volumes of this book
The book is composed of five different types of material in two volumes.
Content of Volumes I and II
This book is divided into two volumes – each of which is a complete work and yet they clearly supplement each other. Volume II deals with the classic Jewish sources that are relevant to define and understand the issue of abuse, obligations to help one another, sexuality and saving others from harm – as well as the nature of rabbinical authority. It includes the responsa from the major poskim on these issues. This material is presented in a systematic conceptual framework for ease of locating and recalling the material. There is a separate listing of the core sources arranged according to author for easy access. These sources are all translated into English but the original Hebrew text is also presented. Volume I is thus a summary of Volume II while Volume I serves as a commentary and explanation of the meaning of the material in volume II. This second volume is essential for understanding the Halachic dynamics of the complex demands that the issue of abuse produces and anyone who wants to understand these issues properly needs to study these sources very carefully.
1. Overview & summary survey the major issues of abuse as well providing a concise summary of practical concerns. It includes an Introduction, Practical Guide, Protocols of Orthodox Organizations for dealing with abuse and a Synopsis of the halachic and psychological issues that was reviewed and annotated by Rav Sternbuch. It also has chapters describing a number of actual abuse cases - including those written by survivors of abuse.
2. The Essays provide in depth analysis of a variety topics by experts (rabbis, psychotherapists and lawyers) who share their knowledge and experience on critical issues.
3. Translated Sources arranged by Topic is a comprehensive collection of Jewish legal sources that are organized according to topic for quick access on the major issues. These texts concern the need to protect the individual as well as his right to protect himself. It contains many texts related to child and domestic abuse, rabbinic authority, the relationship between Jewish and secular law and authority, and the Jewish view of sexuality and deviance. It is indispensable for those who wish to learn and understand the original legal sources. It also serves as a convenient and accessible reference for rabbis who wish to review and refresh their understanding. Lawyers, community leaders and psychologists will also find it useful to understand the parameters of legitimate response when developing strategies to deal with the problem. The third section presents the accepted mainstream views on the topic – including the authoritative writings of the major contemporary authorities.4. Rabbinic Sources section is comprised of more complete citations of the material cited in the book. They are arranged by name rather than by topic. They are presented here for convenience of those who remember the author of the citation but not the section where the citation is quoted. It is also valuable because often only a part of the material was mentioned in the book.
5. Original Hebrew texts are provided in endnotes to the translation.