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Jewish Enlightenment in an English Key : Anglo-Jewry's Construction of Modern Jewish Thought - David B. Ruderman

Jewish Enlightenment in an English Key

Anglo-Jewry's Construction of Modern Jewish Thought

Hardcover Published: 29th October 2000
ISBN: 9780691048833
Number Of Pages: 280

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Historians of the European Jewish experience have long marginalized the intellectual achievement of Jews in England, where it was assumed no seminal figures contributed to the development of modern Jewish thought. In this first comprehensive account of the emergence of Anglo-Jewish thought in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, David Ruderman impels a reconsideration of the formative beginnings of modern European Jewish culture. He uncovers a vibrant Jewish intellectual life in England during the Enlightenment era by examining a small but fascinating group of hitherto neglected Jewish thinkers in the process of transforming their traditional Hebraic culture into a modern English one. This lively portrait of English Jews reformulating their tradition in light of Enlightenment categories illuminates an overlooked corner in the history of Jewish culture in England and Jewish thought during the Enlightenment.

Ruderman overturns the conventional view that the origins of modern Jewish consciousness are located exclusively within the German-Jewish experience, particularly Moses Mendelssohn's circle. Independent of the better-known German experience, the encounter between Jewish and English thought was incubated amid the unprecedented freedom enjoyed by Jews in England. This resulted in a less inhibited defense of Jews and Judaism. In addition to the original and prolific thinkers David Levi and Abraham Tang, Ruderman introduces Abraham and Joshua Van Oven, Mordechai Shnaber Levison, Samuel Falk, Isaac Delgado, Solomon Bennett, Hyman Hurwitz, Emanuel Mendes da Costa, Ralph Shomberg, and others. Of obvious appeal and import to students of Jewish and English history, this study depicts the challenge of defining a religious identity in the modern age.

Industry Reviews

Winner of the 2001 Koret Jewish Book Award, History of the National Foundation for Jewish Culture "David B. Ruderman's cleverly conceived and well executed study won [the] Koret Jewish Book Award in History. The book richly merits this recognition. This is a good and important book."--Eugene C. Black, American Historical Review

List of Illustrationsp. viii
Preface and Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. 3
""The Scripture Correcting Maniae"": Benjamin Kennicott and His Hutchinsonian and Anglo-Jewish Detractorsp. 23
The New and ""Metrical"" English Bible: Robert Lowth and His Jewish Critic, David Levip. 57
Deism and Its Reverberations in English Jewish Thought: Abraham hen Naphtali Tang and Some of His Contemporariesp. 89
Between Rational and Irrational Dissent: Political Radicalism in Anglo-Je
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780691048833
ISBN-10: 0691048835
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 280
Published: 29th October 2000
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 24.16 x 16.31  x 2.54
Weight (kg): 0.54