Levinas, Judaism, and the Feminine

Levinas, Judaism, and the Feminine

The Silent Footsteps of Rebecca
Claire Elise Katz
Distribution: Global
Publication date: 11/14/2003
ISBN: 978-0-253-11077-0
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Challenging previous interpretations of Levinas that gloss over his use of the feminine or show how he overlooks questions raised by feminists, Claire Elise Katz explores the powerful and productive links between the feminine and religion in Levinas’s work. Rather than viewing the feminine as a metaphor with no significance for women or as a means to reinforce traditional stereotypes, Katz goes beyond questions of sexual difference to reach a more profound understanding of the role of the feminine in Levinas’s conception of ethical responsibility. She combines feminist interpretations of Levinas with interpretations that focus on his Jewish writings to reveal that the feminine provides an important bridge between his philosophy and his Judaism. Katz’s reading of Levinas’s conception of the feminine against the backdrop of discussions of women of the Hebrew bible points to important shifts in contemporary philosophy toward the creation of life and care for the other.

Author Bio

Claire Elise Katz is Associate Professor of Philosophy, Women's Studies, and Jewish Studies at the Pennsylvania State University.

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Table of Contents

Preliminary Table of Contents:

List of Abbreviations
1. Judaism and the Ethical: Recovering the Other
2. The Time of Creation
3. The Inauguration of Sexual Difference
4. The Hospitality of the Feminine
5. Eros, Sexual Difference, and the Question of Ethics
6. Ruth, or Love and the Ethics of Fecundity
7. Cain and the Responsibility of Choice
8. Abraham and the Tempering of Virility
9. Maternity, Sacrifice, and Sarah's Choice
10. The Silent Footsteps of Rebecca
Works by Emmanuel Levinas
General Bibliography