Gershom Scholem

From Berlin to Jerusalem and Back

Noam Zadoff

Gershom Scholem

Noam Zadoff

Distributed for Brandeis University Press

344 pages | 6 1/4 x 9 1/4
Paper $40.00 ISBN: 9781512601138 Published December 2017
Cloth $95.00 ISBN: 9781512601121 Published December 2017
German-born Gerhard (Gershom) Scholem (1897–1982), the preeminent scholar of Jewish mysticism, delved into the historical analysis of kabbalistic literature from late antiquity to the twentieth century. His writings traverse Jewish historiography, Zionism, the phenomenology of mystical religion, and the spiritual and political condition of contemporary Judaism and Jewish civilization. Scholem famously recounted rejecting his parents’ assimilationist liberalism in favor of Zionism and immigrating to Palestine in 1923, where he became a central figure in the German Jewish immigrant community that dominated the nation’s intellectual landscape in Mandatory Palestine. Despite Scholem’s public renunciation of Germany for Israel, Zadoff explores how the life and work of Scholem reflect ambivalence toward Zionism and his German origins.
Contents
Acknowledgments • Introduction: The Metaphysical Clown • PART 1: “CONTINUITY OF THE CRISIS”: HOPE AND DISILLUSION (1923–1938) • Cultural Contexts • A Political Circle: Brit Shalom • Religious Contexts • PART 2: THE UNPARALLELED CATASTROPHE: DESPAIR (1939–1948) • Responses to the Holocaust • The Journey to Salvage Looted Books and Manuscripts • The Heart of Odysseus • PART 3: EIN TIEFES HEIMWEH: NOSTALGIA (1949–1982) • Eranos • Between Israel and Germany • Berlin, Again: The Finale • Afterword: From Berlin to Jerusalem • Notes • References • Index
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