After Auschwitz, second edition
History, Theology, and Contemporary Judaism
When first published in 1966, After Auschwitz made headlines and sparked controversy as Jewish "death-of-God" theology. But as the first work by a respected modern theologian to define the Holocaust in religious as well as demographic terms, its greater importance gradually emerged. Today it ranks as a seminal work of modern Jewish thought and culture. In this substantially revised and expanded edition, Richard L. Rubenstein returns to old questions and addresses new issues with the same passion and spirit that characterized his original work.
With the first edition of After Auschwitz, Rubenstein virtually invented Holocaust theology. He argued that Jews (and Christians) who accept the traditional belief that God has chosen Israel and acts providentially in history must either interpret that Holocaust as divine punishment or as the most radical challenge ever to traditional belief. Unable to defend traditional faith, Rubenstein turned to psychoanalysis, sociology, and history to defend religious institutions and ritual. The discussion he originated continued unabated.
The revised After Auschwitz remains as much a book about the human condition as a book about God. While retaining essential material from the 1966 edition, Rubenstein offers his latest thinking on the issues of belief and tradition after the Holocaust. He also deals extensively with events making headlines and shaping contemporary Jewish thinking and theology, such as the Palestinian question and Judaism in post-communist Eastern Eurpe. Facing the threat of Holy War and future Holocaust, questioning the possibility of genuine peace, exploring mysticism and other religions, this After Auschwitz is as challenging—and may provde as controversial—as the original.
About the Author
Richard L. Rubenstein is Rober O. Lawton Distinguished Professor of Religion and Codirector of the Humanities Institute at Florida State University. His other books include The Religious Imagination, The Cunning of History: Mass Death and the American Future, The Age of Triage, and, with John K. Roth, Approaches to Auschwitz.
"All of the essays in this edition are passionate and provocative and some are brilliant. As the summation of decades of burningly honest inquiry into some of the most fundamental issues in modern history, this work will remain one of the seminal books of this generation."
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