New Books Network

Sarah Pessin, “Ibn Gabirol’s Theology of Desire: Matter and Method in Jewish Medieval Neoplatonism” (Cambridge UP, 2013)
Neoplatonists, including the 11th century Jewish philosopher-poet Solomon Ibn Gabirol, are often saddled with a cosmology considered either as outdated science or a kind of “invisible floating Kansas” in which spatiotemporal talk isn’t really about space or time. Sarah Pessin, Associate Professor of Philosophy and the Emil and Eva Hecht... Read More
John L. Modern, “Secularism in Antebellum America” (University of Chicago Press, 2011)
The notion of secularism is something that has a ubiquitous presence in contemporary society. And while there is a general everyday use of this term, meaning ‘not religious,’ the understanding of this term has shifted throughout time. In Secularism in Antebellum America (University Of Chicago Press, 2011) we are presented... Read More
Olga Gershenson, “The Phantom Holocaust: Soviet Cinema and Jewish Catastrophe” (Rutgers UP, 2013)
Fifty years of Holocaust screenplays and films -largely unknown, killed by censors, and buried in dusty archives – come to life in Olga Gershenson‘s The Phantom Holocaust: Soviet Cinema and Jewish Catastrophe (Rutgers University Press, 2013). As she ventures across three continents to uncover the stories behind these films, we... Read More
Rebecca Williams, “Muhammad and the Supernatural: Medieval Arab Views” (Routledge, 2013)
Rebecca Williams‘ book Muhammad and the Supernatural: Medieval Arab Views (Routledge, 2013) is one of the newest additions to the Routledge Studies in Classic Islam series. Despite the Qur’anic proclamation that the only “miracle” which served as proof of Muhammad’s propethood was the Qur’an itself, miracles and supernatural events have... Read More
David N. Livingstone, “Adam’s Ancestors: Race, Religion, and the Politics of Human Origins” (Johns Hopkins UP, 2011)
A report to the General Assembly of Scottish Presbyterians of 1923 contains the following passage: “God placed the people of this world in families, and history which is the narrative of His providence tells us that when kingdoms are divided against themselves they cannot stand. Those nations homogenous in race... Read More
Judith Orloff, “The Ecstasy Of Surrender: 12 Surprising Ways Letting Go Can Empower Your Life” (Harmony Books, 2014)
Surrender is a difficult concept for many people in Western societies, where everything seems to evolve around the desire for control, predictability and power. In our age of anxiety, certainty and control has become the number one tool to help us take charge of our lives so we can pursue... Read More
Brent Nongbri, “Before Religion: A History of a Modern Concept” (Yale University Press, 2013)
We all know that religion is a universal feature of human history, right? Well, maybe not. In Before Religion: A History of a Modern Concept (Yale University Press, 2013), Brent Nongbri, Post Doctoral Fellow at Macquarie University, argues that throughout time people have conceptualized themselves in various ways but did... Read More