The Renegade Jew Who gave us modernityThis brief study of the 17th-century Jewish philosopher Baruch Spinoza recovers the man and his work, finding the sources of his writings in Judaism and Western philosophy,
on both of which he eventually became a major influence--despite the fact that he was expelled from the Jewish community in Amsterdam.
Rebecca Goldstein recounts Spinoza s fascinating life in that city, the lasting effects of the Inquisition on the Sephardic community in which he grew up, and the currents of thought in his time, which included Jewish mysticism and messianism and combined with his readings of Plato and Aristotle.
Goldstein makes difficult ideas accessible as she considers Spinoza`s major writings, most especially the ETHICS, and explains how he reconciles reason and religion.
BETRAYING SPINOZA appears as part of the Jewish Encounters series published by Schocken Books.