Other Others: The Political after the Talmud (Paperback)Sergey Dolgopolski (author)
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Denying recognition or even existence to certain others, while still tolerating diversity, stabilizes a political order; or does it? Revisiting this classical question of political theory, the book turns to the Talmud. That late ancient body of text and thought displays a new concept of the political, and thus a new take on the question of excluded others. Philosophy- and theology-driven approaches to the concept of the political have tacitly elided a concept of the political which the Talmud displays; yet, that elision becomes noticeable only by a methodical rereading of the pages of the Talmud through and despite the lens of contemporary competing theological and philosophical theories of the political. The book commits such rereading of the Talmud, which at the same time is a reconsideration of contemporary political theory. In that way, The Political intervenes both to the study of the Talmud and Jewish Thought in its aftermath, and to political theory in general.
The question of the political for the excluded others, or for those who programmatically do not claim any "original" belonging to a particular territory comes at the forefront of analysis in the book. Other Others approaches this question by moving from a modern political figure of "Jew" as such an "other other" to the late ancient texts of the Talmud. The pages of the Talmud emerge in the book as a (dis)appearing display of the interpersonal rather than intersubjective political. The argument in the book arrives, at the end, to a demand to think earth anew, now beyond the notions of territory, land, nationalism or internationalism, or even beyond the notion of universe, that have defined the thinking of earth so far.
Publisher: Fordham University Press
Number of pages: 296
Dimensions: 229 x 152 mm
Dolgopolski is in complete control of his material. I have rarely learned so much or been pushed by so many thoughts as by these pages. Where political readings of the Talmud have focused on kings, priests, and states, Dogolpolski examines the interaction of characters. Talmudic personhood, Dolgopolski argues, rests on disagreement, refutation and, above all, remembering. This sense of interpersonality, in which characters flash up at the same time that they are marked by erasure, offers up a radically new concept of the political. Bring Deleuze, Schmitt, Ranciere, Heidegger, Kant, and the pre-Socratics together with an extensive understanding, both actual and historical, of the Talmud(s) and the midrash and you'd think you'd have a mess. But no: this is what Dogolposki has done in this book and the results are revelatory.--Tracy B. Strong, University of Southampton and University of California, San Diego
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