Betraying Spinoza: The Renegade Jew Who Gave Us Modernity

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9780805242096: Betraying Spinoza: The Renegade Jew Who Gave Us Modernity
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Betraying Spinoza In 1656, Amsterdam's Jewish community declared Baruch Spinoza excommunicated because he denied the immortality of the soul, the divinity of the scripture, and challenged the idea that the Torah was literally given by God. His writings remain as provocative today. Full description

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Review:

Beautifully crafted. What seem like separate issues Spinoza s pioneering advocacy of complete freedom of thought in religious matters; the turmoil in the Jewish community; the fateful events in Amsterdam in the closing years of Spinoza s life; the philosophical developments of the seventeenth century; Spinoza s idea of a philosophical religion utterly purged of all anthropomorphism, even to the extent of denying that God is a person in any sense come together as if by themselves (the sure sign of a fine artist!) to answer my puzzle: how to understand Spinoza the human being, a man for whom reason itself was a kind of salvation.
Hilary Putnam, New York Observer"

"Beautifully crafted. What seem like separate issues--Spinoza's pioneering advocacy of complete freedom of thought in religious matters; the turmoil in the Jewish community; the fateful events in Amsterdam in the closing years of Spinoza's life; the philosophical developments of the seventeenth century; Spinoza's idea of a philosophical religion utterly purged of all anthropomorphism, even to the extent of denying that God is a 'person' in any sense--come together as if by themselves (the sure sign of a fine artist!) to answer my puzzle: how to understand Spinoza the human being, a man for whom reason itself was a kind of salvation."
--Hilary Putnam, New York Observer

About the Author:

Rebecca Newberger Goldstein is the author of Incompleteness: The Proof and Paradox of Kurt Gödel and of six works of fiction, including The Mind-Body Problem, Mazel, and Properties of Light. A fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, she has received many awards for her fiction and scholarship, including a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Fellowship. She lives in Massachusetts.

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