Talmud, and, Philosophy
Prof. dr. Sergey Dologopolski (University at Buffalo)
21-22-23 November 2016
Always from 16.00 h until 18.00 h
Annexe-building Stadscampus University of Antwerp
Lange Winkelstraat 9, 2000 Antwerp
Participation is free of charge.
Registration via online registration form, click here.
Through a series of case studies concerning the relationships between Talmud and philosophy, the seminar will lay bare the power of, and stakes in, both the conjunction and, in particular, disjunction between the two, as expressed by the “and” of the seminar’s title. The guiding question of the seminar will be: Where does the Talmud, as a discipline of thought and memory, stand vis-à-vis the disciplines of philosophy and rhetoric?
The seminar will consist of three sessions:
- 1. Jews in Theory and in the Two Talmuds
Monday 21 November 2016, 16h00-18h00
Through readings in rabbinic literature and in the works of Carl Schmitt and Jacob Taubes, the session will outline the movement from political theology of decision and/or uncertainty to political philology of refutation in both late ancient and contemporary contexts.
- 2. Earth Anew: From the Two Talmuds to Pre-Socratics to a Critique of Digital Globalism
Tuesday 22 November 2016, 16h00-18h00
Through a comparative reading in parallel pericopae in the Palestinian and Babylonian Talmuds, the session will explore the relationships between earth, being, time, and grounding in (and despite) the context of Heidegger’s and Deleuze’s competing approaches to pre-Socratics. We will particularly emphasize implications of this analysis for contemporary discussion on digital globalism and of the role of both real and imaginary Jews therein.
- 3. K in Plural: Are the Talmuds a Minor Literature?
Wednesday 23 November 2016, 16h00-18h00
Through a comparative reading of Kafka’s parables, Deleuze’s book on Minor Literature, and selected passages from the Babylonian Talmud, the seminar will explore the advantages and limitations of the concept of “minor literature” when applied to the Talmud as a literary corpus.
Sergey Dolgopolski (Ph.D. in Jewish Studies, UC Berkeley 2004 and Doctor of Philosophical Sciences, Moscow Academy of Sciences 1999) is the Gordon and Gretchen Gross Chair of Jewish Thought in the Departments of Jewish Thought and Comparative Literature at SUNY Buffalo. His general area of interest is the variety of ways in which philosophy and literature interact, and thereby create new philosophical concepts and new literary forms. He specializes in the Talmud as a body of text and thought seen from poetic, rhetoric, and philosophical perspectives, with a particular interest in mutual hermeneutics of philosophical, rhetorical, and Talmudic traditions, and emphasis on the jointly shaping engagements of poetic, Talmudic, and philosophical thinking. He is the author of The Talmud in a Post-Structuralist Perspective (Moscow and Jerusalem, 1999) [in Russian], What is Talmud? The Art of Disagreement (Fordham University Press, 2009), and The Open Past: Subjectivity and Remembering in the Talmud (Fordham University Press, 2013). He is currently finishing a monograph preliminary titled “The Political in the Talmud” (Fordham University Press).