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The Discipline of Philosophy and the Invention of Modern Jewish Thought$
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Willi Goetschel

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780823244966

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823244966.001.0001

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State, Sovereignty, and the Outside Within: Mendelssohn’s View from the “Jewish Colony”

State, Sovereignty, and the Outside Within: Mendelssohn’s View from the “Jewish Colony”

Chapter:
(p.178) Ten State, Sovereignty, and the Outside Within: Mendelssohn’s View from the “Jewish Colony”
Source:
The Discipline of Philosophy and the Invention of Modern Jewish Thought
Author(s):

Willi Goetschel

Publisher:
Fordham University Press
DOI:10.5422/fordham/9780823244966.003.0010

This chapter examines Moses Mendelssohn's thoughts about the Jewish colony. It analyzes Mendelssohn's preface to Manasseh ben Israel's Vindication of the Jews in which he initiated the political discourse of Jewish emancipation on his own terms. It describes how he positioned his plea for the emancipation of Jews boldly at the center of the Enlightenment debate on the modern nation-state and the role of Europe in the age of colonialism with the phrase “Jewish colonists.” This chapter also discusses Mendelssohn's view that the problematic use of the term “colonist” sheds critical light on a principal concern with political philosophy.

Keywords:   Moses Mendelssohn, Jewish colony, colonialism, Vindication of the Jews, Jewish emancipation, Manasseh ben Israel, political philosophy

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