The Jewish Idea and Its Enemies: Personalities, Issues, Events

Front Cover
Transaction Publishers, 1988 - Social Science - 264 pages

This volume deals with the modern fate of the traditional conception of Jews as a covenanted people chosen to receive the Law, whose ultimate purpose is contributing to the universal salvation of mankind. The author shows how, under the influence of liberalism, rationalism, relativism, and other Enlightenment ideologies, this idea was distorted, denied, inverted, yet never entirely obliterated. In his discussions of modern Jewish thinkers and writers and the ideological and political struggles of Zionism and the state of Israel against enemies from without and from within, Alexander shows that the ancient idea of covenant is still alive today, if only in the assumption that Jewish life can lead somewhere so long as Jews remember that it began somewhere. Ranging from literary criticism and the history of ideas to journalism and politics, the book is unified by a point of view unabashedly espousing the Jewish idea and challenging its enemies.

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About the author (1988)

Edward Alexander is professor emeritus of English at the University of Washington, Seattle. He has been a member of the Association of Literary Scholars and Critics, the National Association of Scholars, and the Washington Association of Scholars. He is the author of The Jewish Idea and Its Enemies, The Holocaust and the War of Ideas, and Irving Howe: Socialist, Critic, Jew.

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