In the postmodern, relativist world-view with its refutation of a single, objective, and ultimate truth, it has become difficult if not impossible to argue in favour of one’s own beliefs as preferable to those of others. Miriam Feldmann Kaye’s pioneering study is one of the first English-language books to address Jewish theology from a postmodern perspective, probing the question of how Jewish theology has the potential to survive the postmodern onslaught that some see as heralding the collapse of religion. Basing her arguments on both philosophical and theological scholarship, Feldmann Kaye shows how postmodernism might actually be a resource for rejuvenating religion.
Her response to the conception of theology and
postmodernism as competing systems of thought is based on a close critical
study of Rav Shagar (Shimon Gershon Rosenberg) and Tamar Ross. Rather than
advocating postmodern ideas, she analyses their writings through the lens of
the most radical of continental postmodern philosophers and cultural critics in
order to offer a compelling theology
compatible with that world-view. Whether
the reader considers postmodernism to be inherently problematic or merely
inconsequential, this study demonstrates why reconsidering these preconceptions
is one of the most pressing issues in contemporary Jewish thought.
'Jewish Theology is valuable both as a careful study of Ross and the Shagar, two voices whose contribution to the contemporary theological conversation is welcome, and also as an instructive and suggestive proposal for the future of postmodern Jewish theology.'
Mark Randall James, Journal of Textual Reasoning
‘The flourishing of postmodern culture and the development of postmodern philosophy pose important and difficult challenges to Jewish thought, especially in their denial of the existence of a single objective and ultimate truth. The book initiates a multidisciplinary conversation between Jewish thought and Continental philosophy through confronting the outlook of theology with that of postmodernist thought.’ Makor Rishon
‘By subjecting Jewish discourse to the newest ideas in Western philosophy Miriam Feldmann Kaye offers a clear and enriching analysis of issues of fundamental concern and offers a constructive way forward. Rabbi Professor Naftali Rothenberg, Van Leer Jerusalem Institute
‘Dr Miriam Feldmann Kaye’s book is an indispensable read for current Jewish theology. Kaye deals with three crucial contemporary issues: community belief, language, and revelation, from a postmodernist perspective. However, you do not have to be a postmodernist (as I am not) to realize the urgent need for this book and to appreciate the brilliance of this defense for the flourishing of Jewish theology.’
Jerome Yehuda Gellman, Emeritus, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
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