New Article: Benbassat, Yeshayahu Leibowitz: Jewish Existentialism

Benbassat, Roi. “Yeshayahu Leibowitz: Jewish Existentialism.” Religious Studies 51.2 (2015): 141-63.

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0034412514000213

 

Abstract

This article presents Yeshayahu Leibowitz’s conception of Judaism and characterizes his position as typically religious-existentialist. It confronts Leibowitz’s conception with Kantian ethics, refutes the analogy made between these two conceptions, and shows that Leibowitz’s response to Kant is analogous to that of Kierkegaard, the Christian existentialist thinker. It considers Leibowitz’s religious position a Jewish variation of Kierkegaard’s notion of faith in the absurd. Such an analogy enables us not only to elucidate Leibowitz’s religious conception but also to evaluate the implications of Kierkegaard’s religious thought in a broader context.