Between the Lines: Sanctified Sex

By :  Library of the Jewish Theological Seminary Posted On Jan 24, 2022 / 5782 | Author Conversations: Between the Lines

Author Noam Zion discusses his book, Sanctified Sex, which draws on 2,000 years of rabbinic debates addressing competing aspirations for loving intimacy, passionate sexual union, and sanctity in marriage.

Noam Sachs Zion guides us chronologically and steadily through fraught terrain: seminal biblical texts and their Talmudic interpretations; ultra-Orthodox rabbis clashing with one another over radically divergent ideals; contemporary rabbis of varied denominations wrestling with modern transformations in erotic lifestyles and values; and more.

Invited into these sanctified and often sexually explicit discussions with our ancestors and contemporaries, we encounter innovative Jewish teachings on marital intimacy, ardent lovemaking techniques, and the art of couple communication vital for matrimonial success.

This treasure trove of sources and insights . . . might be called The Art of Halachic Loving because it is not just a static anthology; it is shaped to guide and enhance the pleasure of sex and the depth of development of intimacy, communication and relationship. 

Blu Greenberg and Yitz Greenberg, authors, respectively, of On Women and Judaism and The Jewish Way

This event is sponsored by The JTS Library. Dr. David Kraemer, Joseph J. and Dora Abbell Librarian and professor of Talmud and Rabbinics, JTS, will serve as moderator.


Noam Zion is a senior fellow emeritus of the Kogod Research Center at the Shalom Hartman Institute since 1978. He studied philosophy and holds degrees from Columbia University and the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He studied Bible and rabbinics at The Jewish Theological Seminary of America and the Hartman Beit Midrash.

In the past, he led the Tichon program for North American Jewish educators and he teaches in Hartman Institute rabbinic programs: the Be’eri program for Israeli high school teachers and Hillel courses for the Hartman Institute’s iEngage program.

In addition, he also works with the Muslim Leadership Institute, the Hevruta gap year program for Israeli and American Jews, and the Angelica Ecumenical Studies program in collaboration with the Vatican University Angelicum in Rome.

He has developed study guides on Bible, holidays, and rabbinic ethics. In the past, he participated in the research team for the iEngage project. He published an extensive study guide on ethics in war that was completed during the campaign in Gaza.