Thursday, May 12, 2005

New Star, Still Old

The Forward has a review of a new translation of Franz Rosenweig's The Star of Redemption. The book is Rosenzweig's magnum opus, written from the trenches of World War I. A brilliant philosopher, he was also a ba'al teshuvah who decided to teach in Jewish schools rather than in the famous German universities of his time.

The Star is really long and really boring. Even with this new translation (from German) "into language that anyone can read," the book still "remains an exceptionally difficult book." More than that, the philosophy is very dated. Not only that, but the outlook on life is very foreign. His preoccupation with death seems to be born from his own difficult life and is very distant from our lives.

But it is still an important work and if you want to actually read it, maybe this new translation will make it a more accomplishable task.

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