God,Interrupted Heresy and the European Imagination Between the World Wars

ISBN-10: 0691155410

ISBN-13: 9780691155418

Edition: 2012

Authors: Benjamin Lazier
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Description: Could the best thing about religion be the heresies it spawns? Leading intellectuals in interwar Europe thought so. They believed that they lived in a world made derelict by God's absence and the interruption of his call. In response, they helped resurrect gnosticism and pantheism, the two most potent challenges to the monotheistic tradition. InGod Interrupted, Benjamin Lazier tracks the ensuing debates about the divine across confessions and disciplines. He also traces the surprising afterlives of these debates in postwar arguments about the environment, neoconservative politics, and heretical forms of Jewish identity. In lively, elegant prose, the book reorients the intellectual history of the era.God Interruptedalso provides novel accounts of three German-Jewish thinkers whose ideas, seminal to fields typically regarded as wildly unrelated, had common origins in debates about heresy between the wars. Hans Jonas developed a philosophy of biology that inspired European Greens and bioethicists the world over. Leo Strauss became one of the most important and controversial political theorists of the twentieth century. Gershom Scholem, the eminent scholar of religion, radically recast what it means to be a Jew. Together they help us see how talk about God was adapted for talk about nature, politics, technology, and art. They alert us to the abiding salience of the divine to Europeans between the wars and beyond--even among those for whom God was long missing or dead.

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Book details

Copyright year: 2012
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Publication date: 6/24/2012
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 272
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.880
Language: English

Benjamin Lazier is assistant professor of history and humanities at Reed College. He is a recipient of the 2008 John Templeton Award for Theological Promise.

Preface and Acknowledgments
Introduction
Overcoming Gnosticism
The Gnostic Return
Romans in Weimar
Overcoming Gnosticism
After Auschwitz, Earth
The Pantheism Controversy
Pantheism Revisited
The Pantheism Controversy
From God to Nature
Natural Right and Judaism
Redemption through Sin
Redemption through Sin
Jewish Gnosticism
Raising Pantheism
From Nihilism to Nothingness
Scholem's Golem
Epilogue
Notes
Index
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