Description

Fire in the Ashes

God, Evil, and the Holocaust

David Patterson and John K. Roth

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  • $45.00x hardcover (9780295985473) Add to Cart
  • Published: 2012
  • Subject Listing: Holocaust Studies, Religious Studies
  • Bibliographic information: 336 pp., 6 x 9 in.
  • Series: Pastora Goldner Series
  • Contents

Sixty years after it ended, the Holocaust continues to leave survivors and their descendants, as well as historians, philosophers, and theologians, pondering the enormity of that event. This book explores how inquiry about the Holocaust challenges understanding, especially its religious and ethical dimensions.

Debates about God's relationship to evil are ancient, but the Holocaust complicated them in ways never before imagined. Its massive destruction left Jews and Christians searching among the ashes to determine what, if anything, could repair the damage done to tradition and to theology.

Since the end of the Holocaust, Jews and Christians have increasingly sought to know how or even whether theological analysis and reflection can aid in comprehending its aftermath. Specifically, Jews and Christians, individually and collectively, find themselves more and more in the position of needing either to rethink theodicy - typically understood as the vindication of divine justice in the face of evil - or to abolish the concept altogether.

Writing in a format that creates the feel of dialogue, the contributors to Fire in the Ashes confront these and other difficult questions about God and evil after the Holocaust. This book - created out of shared concerns and a desire to investigate differences and disagreements between religious traditions and philosophical perspectives - represents an effort to advance meaningful conversation between Jews and Christians and to encourage others to participate in similar inter- and intrafaith inquiries.

The contributors to Fire in the Ashes are members of the Pastora Goldner Holocaust Symposium. Led since its founding in 1996 by Leonard Grob and Henry F. Knight, the symposium's Holocaust and genocide scholars - a group that is interfaith, international, interdisciplinary, and intergenerational - meet biennially in Oxfordshire, England.
David Patterson is Bornblum Chair in Judaic Studies, University of Memphis. John K. Roth is Edward J. Sexton Professor of Philosophy and director of the Center for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights, Claremont McKenna College. The other contributors are Margaret Brearley, Britta Frede-Wenger, Leonard Grob, Peter J. Haas, Hannah Holtschneider, Henry F. Knight, Juergen Manemann, Rochelle L. Millen, and Didier Pollefeyt.

"Shaped by different traditions but shattered by the very same event-the Shoah-in Fire and the Ashes scholars and ministers, philosphers and rabbis have confronted the philosophical implications of the Holocaust with a seriousness that is meritorious and with a friendship fused by years of dialogue and confrontation. The results are impressive; dramatic proof of what is right about civility in contemporary rligious life-the type of civility that does not mask differences but allows them to be raised and understood with respect and even sympathy."
-Michael Berenbaum, Director, The Sigi Ziering Institute: Exploring the Philosophical and Religious Implications of the Holocaust, and Professor of Theology, The University of Judaism
Contents
Prologue: Flames in the Darkness / David Patterson and John K. Roth
Part One: The Burden of Evil
1. Fire and Ashes: The "Tempter-God," Evil, and the Shoah / Margaret Brearley
In Response
- Britta Frede-Wenger
- David Patterson
- Margaret Brearley
2. Jean Amery: Memories of Evil and Consequences for the Representation of Jewish Identity in Christian Theology / Hanna Holtschneider
In Response
- Peter J. Haas
- John K. Roth
- Hannah Holtschneider
3. Judaism in Protestant Encounters with the Shoah / Peter J. Haas
In Response
- Henry F. Knight
- Rochelle L. Millen
- Peter J. Haas
4. Locating God: Placing Ourselves in a Post-Shoah World / Henry F. Knight
In Response
- Margaret Brearley
- Leonard Grob
- Henry F. Knight
Part Two: Searching Traditions
5. "Like Pebbles on the Seashore": J. B. Soloveitchik on Suffering / Rochelle L. Millen
In Response
- Hannah Holtschneider
- Juergen Manemann
- Rochelle L. Millen
6. "Good" Friday after Auschwitz? / Britta Frede-Wenger
In Response
- Henry F. Knight
Rochelle L. Millen
- Britta Frede-Wenger
7. If the Good Become the Evil: Antimonotheism in Germany after Reunification and the Problems of the Doctrine of Justification / Juergen Manemann
In Response
- David Patterson
- Didier Pollefeyt
- Juergen Manemann
8. Some Fundamental Doubts about Posing the Question of Theodicy in the Post-Holocaust World / Leongard Grob
In Response
- Margaret Brearley
- Didier Pollefeyt
- Leonard Grob
Part Three: Beyond the Ruins?
9. Horror Vacui: God and Evil in/after Auschwitz / Didier Pollefeyt
In Response
- Britta Frede-Wenger
- Peter J. Haas
- Didier Pollefeyt
10. Deliver us from Evil? Kuhn's Prayer and the Masters of Death / John K. Roth
In Response
- Leonard Grob
- Juergen Manemann
- John K. Roth
11. Seeking the Fire in the Ashes: A Chasidic Accounting for Evil form the Midst of Evil after the Evil of Auschwitz / David Patterson
In Response
- Hannah Holtschneider
- John K. Roth
- David Patterson
Postscript: The Disturbance of the Witness / David Patterson and John K. Roth
Bibliography
About the Editors and Contributors
Index
Reviews