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Beyond Radical Individualism

Dec. 15 2017

In his provocatively titled essay “Conservative Postmodernism, Postmodern Conservatism,” the late philosopher Peter Lawler argued that one of the defining characteristics of modernity is the elevation of the individual over the groups to which he or she belongs. The result, writes Lawler, is a society made up of people detached from the bonds of religion, community, and even family, and therefore plagued by a sense of spiritual “homelessness.” In conversation with Alan Rubenstein, Daniel Mark analyzes the essay, explores the virtues and vices of individualism, and asks whether Lawler’s case for an alternative that he calls “conservative postmodernism”—articulated from an explicitly Christian perspective—can be applied to Judaism. (Audio, 40 minutes. Options for download and streaming are available at the link below.)

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Read more at Tikvah

More about: Conservatism, History & Ideas, Individualism, Judaism, Postmodernism, Religion

Israeli Sovereignty Would Free Residents of the West Bank from Ottoman Law

To its opponents, the change in the legal status of certain areas of Judea and Samaria is “annexation;” to its proponents, it is the “extension of sovereignty” or the “application of Israeli law.” Naomi Khan argues that the last term best captures the practical implications of the measures in question. Since the Six-Day War, the Jewish state has continued to uphold the Ottoman legal system in areas of the West Bank under its jurisdiction—despite the fact that the Ottoman empire ceased to exist in 1922; “annexation” would end this situation. Setting aside the usual questions of foreign policy, security, and the possibility of Palestinian statehood, Khan argues that this change would be the one most felt by those who live there:

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Read more at JNS

More about: Annexation, Israeli law, Ottoman Empire, Palestinian Authority, West Bank