Moses Mendelssohn's Living Script

Philosophy, Practice, History, Judaism

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Elias Sacks
  • Bloomington, IN: 
    Indiana University Press
    , December
     2016.
     336 pages.
     $60.00.
     Hardcover.
    ISBN
    9780253023742.
     For other formats: Link to Publisher's Website.
Review coming soon!

Review by Mark A. Kaplowitz forthcoming.

Description

Moses Mendelssohn (1729-1786) is often described as the founder of modern Jewish thought and as a leading philosopher of the late Enlightenment. One of Mendelssohn's main concerns was how to conceive of the relationship between Judaism, philosophy, and the civic life of a modern state. Elias Sacks explores Mendelssohn's landmark account of Jewish practice--Judaism's "living script," to use his famous phrase--to present a broader reading of Mendelssohn's writings and extend inquiry into conversations about modernity and religion. By studying Mendelssohn's thought in these dimensions, Sacks suggests that he shows a deep concern with history. Sacks affords a view of a foundational moment in Jewish modernity and forwards new ways of thinking about ritual practice, the development of traditions, and the role of religion in society.

About the Author(s)/Editor(s)/Translator(s): 

Elias Sacks is assistant professor of Religious Studies and Jewish Studies at the University of Colorado Boulder.

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