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Article

Karl Löwith’s Secularization Thesis and the Jewish Reception of Heidegger

Wolfson College, University of Oxford, Oxford OX2 6UD, UK
Academic Editor: Elliot Wolfson
Religions 2021, 12(6), 411; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12060411
Received: 13 April 2021 / Revised: 24 May 2021 / Accepted: 25 May 2021 / Published: 3 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Heidegger and Jewish Thought: In Search of the Same Difference)
This article argues that Karl Löwith’s thesis of secularization—in brief, that while modern philosophical notions present themselves as secular, they are in fact secularized, that is, they preserve features of the theological background they repress and remain determined by it—can serve as a productive hermeneutical key for framing and understanding an important strand in the twentieth century Jewish response to Heidegger’s philosophy. It takes Ernst Cassirer, Leo Strauss, and Martin Buber as test-cases and demonstrates that these three Jewish thinkers interpreted various categories of Heidegger’s Being and Time to be not simply secular but secularized Christian categories that continue to bear the mark of their theological origin even in their now-secular application and context. The article concludes with a number of reflections and observations on how Löwith’s thesis of secularization can shed light on the polemical and political-theological edge of this strand in Heidegger’s Jewish reception. View Full-Text
Keywords: Martin Heidegger; modern jewish thought; Ernst Cassirer; Martin Buber; Leo Strauss; Karl Löwith; secularization; German philosophy Martin Heidegger; modern jewish thought; Ernst Cassirer; Martin Buber; Leo Strauss; Karl Löwith; secularization; German philosophy
MDPI and ACS Style

Herskowitz, D.M. Karl Löwith’s Secularization Thesis and the Jewish Reception of Heidegger. Religions 2021, 12, 411. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12060411

AMA Style

Herskowitz DM. Karl Löwith’s Secularization Thesis and the Jewish Reception of Heidegger. Religions. 2021; 12(6):411. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12060411

Chicago/Turabian Style

Herskowitz, Daniel M. 2021. "Karl Löwith’s Secularization Thesis and the Jewish Reception of Heidegger" Religions 12, no. 6: 411. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12060411

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