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Hasidism IncarnateHasidism, Christianity, and the Construction of Modern Judaism$
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Shaul Magid

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780804791304

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804791304.001.0001

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Liberal Judaism, Christianity, and the Specter of Hasidism

Liberal Judaism, Christianity, and the Specter of Hasidism

(p.137) 6 Liberal Judaism, Christianity, and the Specter of Hasidism
Hasidism Incarnate

Shaul Magid

Stanford University Press

This chapter explores attitudes modern Jews have had toward Christianity through the work of four figures: Leo Baeck, Hans Joachim Schoeps, Michael Wyschogrod and Elliot Wolfson. The chapter argues that the prewar Jewish attitude toward Christianity is largely constructed in an apologetic frame. This represents what I call Judaism under the “Christian gaze,” an apologetic approach that requires Jews to focus on Judaism’s distinctiveness from Christianity. In the writings of Wyschogrod and Wolfson we see a shift whereby these scholars are no longer defensive about Judaism but are willing to engage the deep structural similarities between these religions without the need to extenuate distinctiveness. This illustrates a change in orientation that opens the reader to viewing the complex nature of Jewish attitudes toward incarnation and divine embodiment that were deflected by the earlier apologetic thinkers.

Keywords:   Apologetics, Paul, Romantic Religion, revelation, incarnation, imaginal body

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