New Perspectives in Theology of Judaism

New Perspectives in Theology of Judaism


Shubert Spero

ISBN: 9781618112675 (hardcover)
Pages: 400 pp.
Publication Date: August 2013

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If it can be said that theology is the philosophical examination of a religion by an insider, then the present collection of essays by Shubert Spero offers us the proper formula for a truly authentic work. The author sets out to rigorously yet sensitively investigate some of the basic concepts and principles of classical Judaism. The topics addressed range from the familiar—“Is God Knowable?” and “Justifying Religious Belief”—to the unusual—”Judaism and the Aesthetic,” “Does Judaism Have a Theory of Self?” and “Does Messianism Imply Inevitability?” Current issues are not neglected, and are addressed in sections such as “Religious Zionism: What is it?” and “The Ethical Theory of Judaism.” While critical and analytic throughout, the author’s style is clear and uncluttered and uses arguments to convince rather than to impress. Neither apologetic nor unnecessarily provocative, Shubert Spero provides a fresh approach to the neglected yet vital domain of Jewish theology.

Shubert Spero (PhD Case Western Reserve University) is an ordained Orthodox rabbi who recently retired as Irving Stone Professor of Jewish Studies at Bar Ilan University, having occupied that chair since moving to Israel in 1983 from the United States. He has served as the spiritual leader of Young Israel of Cleveland, Ohio (1950-1983), and has been a major voice of modern Orthodox Judaism. He taught philosophy at the Cleveland Institute of Art, Case Western Reserve University, during much of that period. He is the author of God in All Seasons (1967), Morality, Halacha and the Jewish Tradition (1983), Holocaust and the Return to Zion: A Study in Jewish Philosophy of History (2000), Aspects of Rabbi Joseph Dov Soloveitchik’s Philosophy of Judaism (2009), and numerous essays in philosophical journals.