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Pauline UglinessJacob Taubes and the Turn to Paul$
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Ole Jakob Løland

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780823286553

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823286553.001.0001

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Jacob Taubes’s Path to Paul

Jacob Taubes’s Path to Paul

From the Eschatologist to the Paulinist

(p.22) 2 Jacob Taubes’s Path to Paul
Pauline Ugliness

Ole Jakob Løland

Fordham University Press

In the introduction to his lecture on the Epistle to the Romans from 1987, Jacob Taubes pointed to aspects of his biography as crucial for how Paul came to be a major concern for him as a Jew. The only book Taubes ever wrote as an intellectual, his doctoral thesis Occidental Eschatology (1947), already pointed to Paul, although the position about Paul became more elaborated throughout Taubes’s intellectual career. What Taubes wrote the most were letters. The letters to his former wife Susan Taubes and to his friend Armin Mohler provide a wider background to Jacob Taubes’s various paths to Paul the apostle. In these letters an inescapable reality for Taubes as a Jew in post-war Europe comes to expression: the horrors of Nazism. The question posed in one of the letters to Mohler “What was so seductive about National Socialism?”, underlies major inquiries with which Taubes confronts the reception history of Paul within modern Europe and German Christianity.

Keywords:   biography, eschatology, German Christianity, Nazism, reception history of Paul

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