Modern Jewish Thought


In this course, we will examine some of the major statements in Jewish thought from the 19th century into the 21st. What happens to Judaism in modernity? What is Jewishness? What have Jews thought about themselves, their past, and their place in the world? Class exploration will revolve around a varied sampling of texts from a wide variety of positions and movements: rationalist, mystical, secularist, conservative, postmodern. Our readings will bring us to the borders of classical text and modern interpretation; religion, philosophy and politics; belonging and resisting. Though no knowledge of Hebrew is required, some familiarity with Judaism and Jewish history will obviously enhance participation in the course.