As the world becomes, to all appearances, a discordant, chaotic jungle inhabited by trees with glass shard leaves and strange, growling nocturnal beasts, it might seem counter-intuitive to seek comfort and guidance from the works of a 17th century Jewish heretic who spent most of his life living quietly as a lens grinder and exchanging learned letters with European intellectuals. On the 350th year since Spinoza’s death, however, he still has much to teach us.
Philosopher who died centuries before the establishment of State of Israel is barred from speaking at 92Y — condemned for lack of Zionism.
Baruch Spinoza was born in Amsterdam in 1632, the son of Portuguese Marranos (or conversos, or crypto-Jews) who had fled the Inquisition.
When ordinary citizens fail to effect change, what can be done? The British writer John Berger looks to the 16th-century philosopher Baruch ‘Bento’ Spinoza for answers.
In celebration of Jewish Book Month, The Arty Semite is partnering with the Jewish Education Service of North America (JESNA) and the Jewish Book Council to present “30 Days, 30 Texts,” a series of reflections by community leaders on the books that influenced their Jewish journeys. Today, Jonathan D. Sarna writes about “Great Jews Since Bible Times” by Elma Ehrlich Levinger.