Senior Fellow: October 2020–February 2021
Research Project: Scepticism towards Progress among Modern Jewish Philosophers
The goal of the research project is a monograph entitled “Scepticism towards Progress among Modern Jewish Philosophers.”
The first part of this monograph deals with Jewish scepticism towards the Christian philosophy of history and has chapters on Moses Mendelssohn, Heinrich Heine, Samuel Hirsch, Nachman Krochmal, Franz Rosenzweig, and Karl Löwith. It is thematically centred on how these modern Jewish philosophers from Mendelssohn to Löwith—arguing disparately and in diverse discourses while pursuing the same argumentative thrust—sceptically opposed the basic character of the Christian and Christian-oriented secular philosophy of history (esp. Voltaire, Lessing, Kant, Hegel), viz. the idea that Christianity intellectually and morally overcame and supplanted Judaism in world history.
The second part deals with scepticism towards modern scientific, cultural, and technological progress (and the common belief in this progress) in the works of Jewish philosophers in the twentieth century. It has chapters on Theodor Lessing, Walter Benjamin, Max Horkheimer and Theodor W. Adorno, Günther Anders, and Leo Strauss.
Christoph Schulte is professor of Jewish Studies and Philosophy at Universität Potsdam.