Old Worlds, New Mirrors: On Jewish Mysticism and Twentieth-Century Thought

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University of Pennsylvania Press, 2010 - 323 pages
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There emerged in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries a new Jewish elite, notes Moshe Idel, no longer made up of prophets, priests, kings, or rabbis but of intellectuals and academicians working in secular universities or writing for an audience not defined by any one set of religious beliefs. In Old Worlds, New Mirrors Idel turns his gaze on figures as diverse as Walter Benjamin and Jacques Derrida, Franz Kafka and Franz Rosenzweig, Arnaldo Momigliano and Paul Celan, Abraham Heschel and George Steiner to reflect on their relationships to Judaism in a cosmopolitan, mostly European, context.

Idel—himself one of the world's most eminent scholars of Jewish mysticism—focuses in particular on the mystical aspects of his subjects' writings. Avoiding all attempts to discern anything like a single "essence of Judaism" in their works, he nevertheless maintains a sustained effort to illumine especially the Kabbalistic and Hasidic strains of thought these figures would have derived from earlier Jewish sources. Looming large throughout is Gershom Scholem, the thinker who played such a crucial role in establishing the study of Kabbalah as a modern academic discipline and whose influence pervades Idel's own work; indeed, the author observes, much of the book may be seen as a mirror held up to reflect on the broader reception of Scholem's thought.

 

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Table des matières

II
18
III
32
V
53
VII
84
VIII
110
X
134
XII
160
XIII
169
XVII
194
XX
206
XXI
218
XXII
235
XXIII
250
XXIV
256
XXV
312
XXVI
326

XV
177

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À propos de l'auteur (2010)

Moshe Idel is Max Cooper Professor of Jewish Thought Emeritus at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Senior Researcher at the Shalom Hartman Institute. He is the winner of many awards and prizes, including the EMET Prize, given by the Prime Minister of Israel; the Israel Prize for Jewish Thought; the Gershom Scholem Prize for research in Kabbalah, given by the Israeli Academy for Sciences and Humanities; and the National Jewish Book Award. Among his many books are Hasidism: Between Ecstasy and Magic, Absorbing Perfections: Kabbalah and Interpretation, and Kabbalah and Eros.

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