“At stake in our political life,” Paul Kahn observes, “has been not our capacity to be reasonable, but our capacity to realize in and through our own lives an ultimate meaning.” While it would require little effort for me to catalogue the many insights that seized my attention while reading Kahn’s thoughtful and highly provocative new book, it is this basic insight that chiefly arouses my interest, insofar as it serves as the organizing premise for the argument as a whole. It is therefore this claim most of all that deserves close scrutiny.Read the rest of Political theology and political existentialism.
Peter E. Gordon
Peter E. Gordon is the Amabel B. James Professor of History at Harvard University, specializing in modern European Intellectual History from the late eighteenth to the late twentieth century. His first book, Rosenzweig and Heidegger, Between Judaism and German Philosophy (University of California Press, 2003) won several awards, including the Salo W. Baron Prize from the Academy for Jewish Research for Best First Book, the Goldstein-Goren Prize for Best Book in Jewish Philosophy, and the Morris D. Forkosch Prize from the Journal of the History of Ideas for Best Book in Intellectual History. His most recent book is major historical and analytical reconstruction of interwar German philosophy, entitled Continental Divide: Heidegger, Cassirer, Davos (Harvard University Press, 2010), which received the Jacques Barzun Prize from the American Philosophical Society. He is the editor of Weimar Thought: A Critical History (Princeton University Press, forthcoming).