Fall 1998


Number 1

Volume 26


Cameron Wybrow
Robert D. Sacks

The Significance The Book




in Genesis 1-11


Job: Translation




Chapters 39-42 65
Andrew Reece

Drama, Narrative,


Socratic Eros in Plato's


Mark Kremer



Revolution in Burke's Letter to the

Sheriffs of Bristol





the Twofold Presentation of the


Power Doctrine in Nietzsche's Thus Spoke


Review Essays


Frank Schalow Bruce W. Ballard





National Socialism


Whose Pluralism?


Hilail Gildin, Dept.


Philosophy, Queens College

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Fall 1998

Volume 26

Number 1

Cameron Wybrow
Robert D. Sacks

The Significance The Book




in Genesis 1-11


Job: Translation


Chapters 39-42
Andrew Reece


Drama, Narrative,


Socratic Eros in Plato's 65

Mark Kremer



Revolution in Burke's Letter to the 77

Sheriffs of Bristol Steven



the Twofold Presentation of the Will

to Power Doctrine in Nietzsche's Thus Spoke


Review Essays

Frank Schalow Bruce W. Ballard





National Socialism


Whose Pluralism?

Copyright 1998



ISSN 0020-9635

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where it is stated that Nimrod ruled over (and possibly built) cities. and thus opposed to an allegedly purer form of life. Jewish and Christian. it is said that Cain (or possibly his son Enoch) built the first city. The first is that much of traditional pious exegesis of Genesis 1-11 fails in its very reasonable task elaboration of a moral or political of urban because. and in Genesis 1 1. has not yet made among inroads into the human men at a time heart. I is wish not to argue that. antitechnical. not paying enough attention to the different contexts in these characters appear. and the which Babel-builders. Why this? One finds in the traditional commentaries a number of overlapping themes. the Lord God. with superfluous and which arts. Traditional exegesis of these stories. Finally. or even defy. the city and tower with its top in the heavens. that of the nomadic Third. It improperly fuses the characters and accomplish life ments of Cain. 1 . associated with and antipolitical. Fall 1998. the Babel-builders are not evil in condemned For. those who are supposed to be First. second or at least reasonable those characters. in Genesis 10. 26. few the pride or hubris desires to compete with. the city is associated with the complexity and sophistication of a of which are number of necessary for survival and many of which are possibly morally dangerous. the the In this paper I wish to make three arguments. Vol. from the to be political-theological perspective of the Biblical Finally. in which the unified human race attempts to build Babel. as argue. the city is connected with land ownership. the city is impious in their intentions: Cain. although intent. as a per Nimrod's kingdom of cities understood as a tyranny but fectly when reasonable attempt to establish a political ordering law. failing to note that in each instance there are redeeming features. was was often sur prisingly antiurban.The Significance of the City in Genesis 1-11 Cameron Wybrow McMaster Divinity College where The city is mentioned in three episodes in Genesis 1-11: in Genesis 4. interpretation. it makes funda mental interpretive errors. Second. man. in light the Babel project. Nimrod. divine or conventional. the city is associated with improper aspirations toward human greatness or even human divinization. the Babel-builders. of the effort they are making is indeed narrator. for the actions of is that the failure to read the text carefully does damage to the one major point on which the traditional interpreters I will seem to be correct: the unacceptability of the Babel project. The thing I wish to argue excuses. and it prejudges the motives of the characters in all three cases. herds Nimrod. in its urge to theory moralize about the lives and motives of the early city-builders. No.

they Eve and the angel of produce much good. and I have consulted Specifically. antipolitical tendencies of commentaries am not the Jewish and Christian traditions.3-5). THE CRITIQUE OF THE CITY IN TRADITIONAL EXEGESIS The traditional commentaries on Genesis are only enough to Genesis Rabbah. Traditional One Hostility with Toward Cain and His Line must begin Cain. 1. This negative portrayal of Cain colors the event with he is associated. 4. that is. When he sacri Lord (Gen. I the inadequacy handling with of the political themes interpreters' traditional remarks the fine details of comparing the the Biblical text. often little basis in the text. I will propose my own tentative account of the Bible's moral-political evaluation of the city. in which those city-builders later in Genesis 1-11 get a (especially Nimrod and the Babel-builders) will find it hard to fair hearing. I have used tateuch. legion. fices to the most Thus.4 I Interpretation will proceed in the be following manner. heaped who is traditionally him credited with founding Christian character. Out of antiurban.2 kills the son truly in God's image. if the quality is acceptable. Cain. has had abuse upon by scores of Jewish and interpreters for at least two millennia.1 His motives and his spiritual and the spiritual character of with his descendants. First. In fus ing (they own. the first city. of the Next.3 or. and establishes among interpreters recorded antiurban. his religious performance is faulty. different are all trying to blur the differences and notes). Cain cannot be expected to God's) image. the refuse. Cain. . A. Abravanel's reveal some representative tendencies. between them properly distinguished in the text tendencies of establish some general but merely trying to which I can set my against interpretation. Augustine's these City of God. Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. have all been impugned. Nimrod and the will Babel-builders in show some representative premodern commentaries. he offers (according to some of the rabbis) the samples of inferior his produce. is not said to have been born after Adam's (hence conclude that he is actually the offspring of death Sammael. according to some of the rabbis. Fi by nally. a and Calvin's Commentary on the Pen Commentary on Genesis. antipolitical atmosphere. I will present the political themes which can gleaned from the discussion of Cain. This is why he becomes a murderer and Abel. With this rather unauspicious head start in life. Cain's very birth is suspect. the an which founding of the city. anti- I have constructed kind I of composite account of the technical. Noting that unlike his Genesis 5 counterpart Seth.

and Cain Lamech Metusael. 1. Augustine says nothing negative. some rabbis say that he. 21). 8. Moses. p.2). The names of Irad. life into a sophisticated. (City of God. p. his city and people. Cain practised a purely external religion and did not really serve God in his heart. The details Lamech's mistreatment of his wives. career.4 The traditional do not commentators are a condemn little lighter on Cain in one respect: they and ground unanimously (4. 1. Jacob. (without etymological argument) to of mean sexual "rebellion" (Genesis Rabbah. Calvin on the other. finding nothing wrong with Cain's sacrifice.5. XV.The he gives City in Genesis 5 paltry amount after finishing most of it off himself (Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. 2. and do not hesitate to invent facts in order to condemn them. 5. and David. ruthless The commentators are regarding Cain's descendants. declares that Cain's other activities (unmentioned in the Biblical text) must have been evil. Mehujael. p. 255). are supplied by the . dience for Rabbah see a Contrasting sufficiency and obe Abravanel and the Genesis and life of on one hand Rabbi Eliezer. like other hoped to have immortality through a (presumably. to will return later. One became a murderer. 8. vol. "wicked" "house" building of a city.5 Cain's desire to settle down more of a shepherd. explaining that "Cain also chose to engage in artful things and ground. 1. who only a are not nature of vin willing to supplement the Genesis story quite so blatantly regarding the Cain's offerings." therefore became a tiller of the "natural" whereas Abel was satisfied with the Abel. XV. Augustine takes great pleasure in repeat About Cain's edly noting that the line murderers. Calvin Cain's choice of occupation as a tiller of the grants that this occupation can be laudable and holy. Augustine. that it in fact can be interpreted as commanded by God in Genesis 1 and and 2 (Calvin. This activ fundamental difference allows room which for a more positive view of Cain's ities and intentions. such as Augustine and Calvin. and them. 256). Cal declares that there was nothing wrong with Cain's grain. 153). says bluntly "Cain. Augustine sees the city which Cain builds as an allegory of the City of Man. we fundamental difference I over the worth of settled agricultural life. Rabbi Eliezer of allows The Genesis Rabbah. says Abravanel. 17. but with his hy pocrisy. technical to run away which occupation represents the perennial nonluxurious human ten dency from the simple. and Uzziah lusted after the ground. 192). vol. Those interpreters. 21). absent from the Biblical text. Noah. Augustine. that human society which seeks only earthly felicity and denies our supernatural end (City of God. Cain's tion: p. another choice. that with which originated the earthly city began and ended with is. Abravanel sheds light on the rabbinic hostility Cain's farming simpler. God intended with us. and Lamech are all said vol. supplement it equally regarding Cain's motives. however. 29). was the proto type of all the great prophets and leaders of Israel. another a drunkard. Cain's leper" occupa no good came of a (Genesis to Rabbah. who were themselves shep herds: Abraham. his son Enoch) which would live forever (Genesis Rabbah. Isaac. p.

In sum. and because of this.22. superfluous sin. 237-40). Nimrod fares only slightly better than Cain in traditional "beginning" He liter actions ally cannot even make a onto the Biblical stage without his . if not being the "sons of God" completely evil. Traditional Hostility Toward Nimrod accounts. his founding or even of and/or of a insincere. pp. Abravanel argues that the were destruction which prevailed which before the Flood directly linked to the p. God" at least more carnal in their interests. he affirms the vileness of Lamech's polygamy and waxes eloquent about Lamech's cruelty and inhumanity (ibid. In general. however. far as we can tell from Genesis 4. Cain's daughters went painted tempting the angels to fall. view. Taking posite the Cain line on such grounds. Like the rabbis. with human law making. duced Seth's line into waywardness. with political life) fall under a dark shadow. In Calvin these "sons of are Augustine virtually and Calvin the Cainite self-conscious that they are the Church (Calvin. and gifts from God (Calvin. Tubal-Cain is mentioned as noted rabbis for his forging of of weapons (which are not provid specifically the metal implements crime Genesis 4. the former being. Calvin notes the wickedness of the atmosphere in which the arts arise. and all its connections (with the arts. In who se women are the "daughters men" justified both pp. 217-22). 238).). it can be said that Cain does not have a very good public image. went about stark naked. 160). Calvin. violence and In a more analytical vein. and 159). flagrantly about violated the naked with rules concerning incest (p. like beasts. his taking up an act of city is vainglory of vio defiance of God. Calvin refuses to condemn 257). Cain's line is uniformly contrasted unfavorably with Seth's line. of p. the latter who lived more virtuously. Cain's generation were sinners and rebels who thought p. Naamah. 2. thus more ing a way for his ancestor Cain's sister to be perpetrated efficiently (ibid. Such is the picture which traditional exegesis of Genesis 4 tends to yield. XV. did not yet exist). his male descendants increased the level of weapons or lence in the world.6 Interpretation (ibid. acquisitiveness Cain bequeathed to his descendants (Abravanel. either by the introduction by their desire for He and city which wealth. the he founded. Tubal-Cain's given (about whom absolutely no details as are in Genesis).). his offering to God was shoddy of farming is judged ambivalently. they did not need God (Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. his female descendants seduced the only godly people into his line have few if any redeeming features. 160-62). the op for him the arts are goods. They eyes. these unions produced the wicked giants who were wiped out in the Flood (pp. His birth is suspect. creating the universal degeneration which lines' being wiped out by the Flood (City of God.22).). sang and played in honor of idols (ibid.) (which.

And. against the order of things that he should a king (Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. the ancestor of Israel. 420-21. pp. oppressor. p. was based on a sham (Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. 2. 60-61).4). p. Thus. as the-verb "to (halal). to "rebel" in their calling upon the name of the Lord. 317). being a mighty hunter. which is the normal meaning of the piel form of the same root. like all hunters. Augustine tells us that Nimrod. which is what persuaded people to let him them. Genesis 10. but mention rather. he was the foe of his brother Jacob. Nimrod. Another thing which counts against rule Nimrod is his be being a grandson of Ham. . and. instead of "beginning" to multiply upon the earth. was miraculously thwarted (Pirke vol. From the sense "pro fane.The City in Genesis 7 being be a condemned. p. 260). 38). Finally. Second. is bad for two reasons. and they the evil men of pre-Flood "rebelled" days. he a 10. There is other evidence that Nimrod. as master of the pagan lands out of which when Abraham came. ants same Obviously. Esau. "beginning" is is verb. of course. man. First. he Abraham. Esau. although it is not mentioned in Scripture. who 4. is reminiscent of the other hunter in Genesis. in Genesis Rabbah. Nimrod is lived until evil the time of because. 3).). mighty and thus they can liberally 'rebelled' when he was a one in the earth" (Genesis Rabbah. vol. however." who "begin" upon the name of the Lord. and hence were actually They mention the people of in not Genesis 4. de Rabbi Eliezer. he Genesis Rabbah." earth. "began" 2. that is. so negatively. 175). to degenerating calling "rebelling. p. tried to kill Abraham he was young. Calvin tells He further argues that the statement that Nimrod was a the Lord (Genesis Lord. who. such evil to multiply upon the earth and the pre-Flood gi announced with the (ibid.26 are said. Nimrod the city-builder evil. tyranny (Calvin. In case anyone should think the rabbis are stretching the meaning too much. too. if it mighty hunter before the mighty hunter "against" seems bad enough for not Nimrod that his even grant hunting is interpreted hunter. in must company whose as the Cainites and their offspring. was obviously a furious Nimrod. here found in the hiphil form.9) means that Nimrod was a rebel (City of God. be evil. and destroyer of earth-bom creatures (City of God. XVI." sym bolizes the Rome (Jacob Neusner." the rabbis feel justified in translate: "Nimrod vol. they supply other examples of wicked people things. being a a beast than a human he was also the originator of more like being. his claim to might.8 reads: "And Cush begat Nimrod: he began to begin" profane" Genesis Rabbah interprets the verb "to mighty one in the (halal). deriving all wicked things. is a deceiver. In this attempt. who was consigned to slavery by Noah in Genesis 9. when in fact he did it by wearing the magical coats of animal skin which God had given to Adam and Eve when he put them out of was a great They Eden. 2. XVI. it is p. in later Jewish literature (Neusner tells us) he oppressive power of us that "hunter. Since Nimrod is a slave. 174). pp. some of the rabbis do say he fooled people into thinking he could cow fierce beasts.

the the Ham line. according to Genesis 10.4. therefore. "this they are rebelling to (Genesis Rabbah. the two intertwined in traditional commentary. His city. The Babel-builders. again. they are not satisfied with want the are are trying to challenge God. a city. takes on a associated with and his kingdom. 2. The tradition uniformly condemns the builders at Babel. 260). like Abraham.8 Interpretation Nimrod. . the plain on which Babel was erected was in the land of Shinar. Both their deeds and their motives are entirely wicked.2 they decide to vated by Satan (Genesis Rabbah. pp. sinfulness of He the cruel godlessness of pride and the pagan empires. Traditional Hostility Toward the Babel-Builders explicitly state that Nimrod had anything Genesis 1 1. 324). and the is condemned because it was the brainchild of Nimrod. XVI. do. for they p. There is odious reason to question the connection out between Nimrod and Babel. "Settling" is moti vol. scale Olympus and dethrone Jove in pagan mythology (City of God. too (Genesis Rabbah. right motives. for idol They filled the sin of pride. which is often assumed to chapters are be the city discussed in Genesis 1 1 Thus. the Lord. There are other flaws in the Babel-builders' motives." but are on the 50). the lower part of the world. in an summary. Why is their act a rebellion? They are trying to build a tower says: with because in Genesis 6 God its top in the heavens. God's people do not rest con move. and vol. to make a "name" themselves (Gen. he was often assumed to have been not Although the Biblical text does to do with the Babel project of its initiator. Isaac. was the area of his king dom. First. with the upper part. 2. p. as in the case of Cain. could hardly him have Urban life. needless to say. as I will point later. 49-50). Second. (Genesis Rabbah. to displace him. the purpose of this section is to discuss the faults of the Babel-builders insofar as they can be discerned without reference to Nimrod. The rabbis object that in Genesis 11. it is said in Genesis 10 that Nimrod founded a city called Babel. 2. Nimrod becomes Babel project due to responsibility for the Babel project. as one might expect. worldly glory been founded with the set against righteousness." are "rebels. bad scent. Augustine insists their pride impiety and their foolishness thinking that a tower of any height could ever challenge concurs with the others that the story is about like that of the giants who tried to pile Pelion on Ossa to God-defying pride. is repudiated by much of the tradition because he represents was impious rebel against God and tyrannical over mankind. 51). which. In any case. means. 11. want 2. tent "settle" in the land of Shinar. like Nimrod. heavens. 3. at signifies also that they made an on 261. vol. and Jacob." "and this they begin to which. do" translated into rabbinic. In p. being settling and building in "settled. probably vol.4). p. They they being given the earth. Calvin Calvin. and. for two reasons. vol. the Babel-builders are reminiscent . which p. 1.

it cannot give one immortal life or even an immortal name. are proud. which willing to supply motives which are recorded. and tyranny over others. but to conspire against and a God. Abravanel thus. are equally stained by association the wrong sort of people." us make "let build city"). It is their politics as much as their materialism that is at fault. and is associated with the violence of patriarchs. thinking to build structures which will keep their names alive forever. heir of a slave. apparently picking up on the language a of mutual exhortation in 11. not rendered suspect by the fact that the first is people to be political cooper to build a better cities life. the arts. at worst it is temptation to idolatry. Nimrod. only God can do these things. says Abravanel. They story. Abravanel argues. The arts come from the children of vengeful bigamist Lamech. are quite are not Babel-builders is how much not they add to the text. At best it is a necessary evil in a fallen world. the art of bringing people together to build a decent civil order. is inferior to the way of the Politics. the human beings who are desire to build is unnecessary. More generally. and even actions appropriate moral of each This might not be a bad procedure. without God's help by They purely human means. The the city. if the materials they supplied were . idola They wish to build a settled and secure life or even against wishes. and the rule of with human beings by others. God's do not need the political life of the city. sinners.The of City us in Genesis 9 the godless Cain. in order to establish the stated. is ated. CRITICISM OF THE TRADITIONAL ACCOUNTS OF THE CITY One upon of the first things that and the traditionalists' strikes us when we read the assault Cain.3-4 ("let brick. then. manages to slip in the moral that the way of Torah is higher than the way of the Greeks. The city-builders of Genesis 1-11 all have unsavory are They or are fugitives from God ters. in criticizing the Babel-builders. B. Nimrod being things some part of the Ham line which Noah subjects to Shem and Japheth. who defined man as a political animal. The city. Cain being rejected in favor first of Abel. Summary of the Traditional Critique of the City associations. they God's murderers. or rebels against God. then of Seth. desire of walking away from God rather than with him. The city cannot provide for security against death. hunting. rejection of God. that to urban the Babel-builders that wanted not only superfluity (his usual objection life) but social people they thought that political organization was the highest form of life. which. Ruling comes from Nimrod. being Esau's way. is grounded in folly. They are from the wrong lines. political which go with cooperation. 4.

all interpretive control is lost. Augustine's most claim that translators. however. We simply have to out much of the legendary material if we think our text of Genesis 1-11 make sense on can its own. philologically unacceptable by found Nimrod unappealing. they condemn Nimrod for his paganism and his attempt to murder Abraham. Nimrod. for two First. point. Cain's line ended with a murderer is also untrue. They can point to the parallel between Cain the farmer and and Abel the shepherd." but also the idiosyncratic "profaning" equation of with "rebel word Again. however. to the connection between Abraham left the eastern world ruled Nimrod. and so on. The interpreters have already decided that Cain. Sec that there is ond. The rule text can mean whatever the interpreters want it to mean. they in the Biblical text. if all the etymologies and legendary material were excluded. and the Babel-builders the reasons for the antiurban are evil. which a plenty of loose connections traditional interpretation can be founded. more relevant interest. to justify their They contrast can indeed appeal to a number of textual details.10 Interpretation role of providing plausible explanations for what is recorded." they ask us to accept too much on faith. between the pre-Flood and the Babel-builders' desire for a name. the evil of Cain and the others is axiomatic in the interpretive tradition in to my present which they have been would argue trained. to the fact that by Nimrod. Shinar. and enough reading. again might not be bad in itself. There are Nonetheless. but some of fetched. far beyond this. believe." "begin"-"profane" breaking as the "begin" piel ling. When material this far from the text is allowed to shape the inter limited to the go characters' pretation of motives and actions. to the between the violence of Cain and Lamech and the rise of urban life and the arts. even without the extraneous material. and other are facts simply do not fit into the antiurban picture. demanding us to allow not only the rendering of the hiphil the claims made are simply too far "profane. Another mology noticeable feature is the Jewish This interpreters' fascination with ety and other word play. to Nimrod's connection with and associations upon Ham. Among the following: Augustine's claim that Nimrod was a hunter is considered who "against even God" by Calvin. the errors the traditional interpretation is inadequate. since Lamech fathers sons who are . Some of the claims are errors. that the real problem of the traditional interpreters deeper. when they assert without philological "idol." reasoning that the "name" in the Babel story all mean can only mean or that the names of Cain's lies descendants I "rebellion. and would maintain this even reasons. The addition of legendary material and the use of verbal tricks are not interpretation. They attribute Cain's birth to the angel They Sammael. For example. to the fact that Nimrod to the similarity is reminiscent of the evil "mighty "men of men" wiped out name" in the Flood. they are merely the justifications. the but the rabbis stretch it beyond the resemblance may be significant. and Babel. to the connection be tween Nimrod Esau the hunters.

If Israel is not wicked . the text says that Cain believes he is hidden from God's face. Ham's son. and God does not contradict Cain on this point. the shepherd who sells his wool and mutton or in spirit to the city than is the hunter trapper who is self-sufficient. Further. in a parallel manner. Nimrod. Yet the text is that God did nor not gaze unto Cain and imputed to Cain. The association between simply Then there is the Calvin claims not worked out well hunting by the and city life allegedly intended of the by Genesis is traditionalists. And settled farmers (like Cain. the entire race." The interpretation same such is. lives away from the city The landed farmer with his rural commu in the marketplace. In fact. if God will then. is his sacrifice said supposed his sacrifice. rather. The common interpretation that Nimrod to aid all the project. Abravanel. since not Ham but facts that do not fit. the city falling to his arrows. and that the city to protect him.The not murderers of City in Genesis 11 but inventors. and the later Israelites) kill their cattle. is cursed to in Genesis 9. The inter Augustine and the rabbis that Nimrod must have been unneces sarily violent and tyrannical. these are nity. not supplementation that Cain's offering is hypocritical. but he does order to wicked derive this from textual evidence. is feeble. or out of the wish to build a worldly city without God. equally responsible for the that the sin of the Babel-builders was cannot explain of the cities of essentially the why God took desire drastic of action at superfluity that motivated Cain. The rabbis' claim that Nimrod shares the character Canaan. out of the desire for a name. are not rounded the association who up in pens of the hunter and with is peculiar. Cain is to to build his city out of vainglory. because he was a hunter and hunters kill things. the hunter is less violent. there is bad reasoning in the traditional pretation of constructions. but say nothing against Moses who one? prescribes govern Israel's settled agricultural life." Again. and Asshur in Genesis 4 and 10. that Cain had a says justify God. execution. Babel but not in the case Cain. runs against of the clear sense of the text in that of Genesis 11. text with uncharitable motives. which makes "children men. The way of the hunter is thus the settled no more violent toward animal life than that of the shepherd or his prey creation captive farmer. For shepherds (like Abel) kill things. no evil motive is to be flawed in either intention or Similarly. The text would seem was suggest that his motive was fear of being killed. How. because he does not keep for its entire life before killing it. Then there are the the slave Ham is untrue." not help him build "lusting after the laws to a heavenly that ground. or that he ordered the people him. His victims enjoy God's before as castrated. They they are by the farmer. the rabbis rage against Cain for is. he infers it in infers. hardly closer the model of the political man. Augustine all lifestyle. Further. further. undertook the Babel project on his own. The hunter is the loner. Canaan's brother Cush and Cush's son Nimrod are not slavery included in the curse. tilling it. too their sheep. could we expect Cain to build anything but a "worldly city.



for wanting land exactly
of the what



to till,

the pre-Flood men are said to


why is Cain's motive so disreputable? Again, in multiplying upon the earth, but that is


were commanded

do in Genesis 1.

Why is

their attempt at



out at as a rebellion? as motivated

forge interpreted

Finally, why is Tubal-Cain's invention by the desire to make swords rather than
the vengeful


Certainly, his father


Lamech, but

one cannot

simply impute such emotions to a son. After all, no one else in the Cain line is said to be violent, and Tubal-Cain's siblings all invent useful or pleasant arts,
not violent ones.

One has to say, then, that the

antiurban trend of thought
without textual


though not
a close

clearly justified


of the city-builders and

completely reading of the details of Genesis 1-11. The motives their families are not so clearly evil as supposed. There
and misunderstood rather

among the tradi foundation, is not


evidence that

Cain is frightened, slighted,

than evil.

Nimrod in Genesis 10 displays

no wicked motives or


evil actions.


Babel-builders, however wrong their project may be, say nothing at all about defying God. Further, if Nimrod cannot be connected with the Babel project of
Genesis 1 1
There is

a negative




would not reflect upon



work, then, to be done if
about the

we are

to articulate a coherent

logico-political teaching


as presented

in Genesis 1-11.


essay will be a preliminary attempt to give the outlines of the doctrine of Genesis 1-11 on the place of the city in the political life of mankind. I wish to argue that Genesis 1-11 wants us to see the city, and, more
remainder of this



speaking, human


effort, in

a much more positive

light than the

tradition sometimes suggests.

The line




body am building

of traditional

interpretation, but in its

I follow here comes, oddly enough, from the more unorthodox moments. For I

upon the work of

themselves are

Eugene Combs, Kenneth Post, and Robert Sacks, indebted to Midrashic sources such as the Genesis Rabbah.
one sees

In the Midrashic writings,

hints here



of a a


account of

by less pietistic, more acute of politically way reading Scripture. Combs, Post, and Sacks have devel oped these hints and systematized them to an extent; I wish to pursue their
an account which can


be brought to light



What I


strive to establish






which, against






of the

sees the and





legitimate human


to the problem



response which

God is willing
Cain. The

to work with and, under certain

circumstances, is
so well

I begin
with classification of






established that


in Genesis




impious to




to gaze



trary. Cain cannot know why God pays no

it, but it must be questioned. First, is, from Cain's point of view, arbi attention to it, as God does not say.

He has


hard to


his grain, probably

harder than Abel has
tried to obey God's the

to raise his sheep.

Further, he,



apparent commandments. and


God tell Adam to


(Gen. 1),

to till the garden (Gen. 2)? Did not God tell Adam that
would work

upon expulsion

from Eden he
Cain felt


land for his food (Gen. 3)? One
like the

can see


He is, in

a way,

more qualified applicant who

why loses

the job to the boss's nephew, or perhaps to an affirmative action program. As a
victim of apparent which

injustice, his




This does



the murder

follows, but it
so perverse as









nearly Cain's



make out. another nonmalicious account








that God preferred a sacrifice of an animal over that

of vegetation.

Might he




that the sacrifice of a human




better (Genesis Rabbah,



248-49)? One does

not need

to presume that Cain killed Abel out of anger or


one might argue that

he killed Abel in
Even if this
wicked. what sin

a misguided attempt to please

rabbinic speculation

is discounted, it is

not so clear that

Cain is





ever give



does God

it is true (4.7), but God does not explain Cain any instructions about how to live. In

fact, God


Genesis 9. That
can rule

nothing to anyone about how to live is, God seems to be waiting to see if



Flood, in

man can rule

himself. If

race will not


his desire, this may be possible. If not, then perhaps the human able to live without law. The fact that Cain is not punished by
given will



that no one else is

is waiting to see what people Lamech's speech in Genesis 4,

any laws before the Flood, suggests that God live like. The violent world presumed by
that God's policy of nonpunishment and

and the utter violence of the pre-Flood genera

described in Genesis 6, has
can grant that



not proved

to be the





Cain does

sorry for it afterward. He engages remaining days in nonviolent ways, wandering, In this

bad deed, but only one, and he seems to be in no more malicious activity and spends his




and procreating. who





his descendant Lamech,

proudly boasts of his killings. Cain says that his sin is too

to be forgiven and expects that everyone

kill him; that is, he assumes, with Hobbes, that everyone is a poten try tial murderer and that there is no safety in the state of nature. Further, he fears



be hidden from God's face, and,




to protect Cain


the assaults of other men,


never reassures



his continuing


Perhaps God thinks his

protective sign

ence, but Cain clearly does


it that


implies his continuing pres God therefore allows Cain to


from his

go out



dwell in the land


Nod ("wandering").


that he



mark, is it any


interest to God, and not trusting in God's that Cain builds a city to protect himself? Is the defen
of not a natural course

sive arrangement of a



men who

believe they



the state of nature, with no law

but that


the strong to protect them?

Similarly, it is hard

to find blame with Cain's descendants. None of them
son which means

does anything shameful, except for Lamech. Cain's lends his name to the first city. bad





in Hebrew,


Isaac Friedman has

shown against

in fact, it has rather the first city is an be

good ones

of a new



pp. of



Jacques Ellul; 11, 49-61). The founding of life, one which may prove to

It begins


the act of a fearful murderer, but perhaps it will end in

something better. And, indeed, the descendants of Enoch, who invent arts which make life more convenient, suggest that this is the case. Even Calvin, who was

hostile to Cain, granted the goodness fact that one of the arts invented, that
prove the text condemns arts

of of

the arts described in Genesis 4. The


can yield weapons



in general; for the text does

not even mention and mu



the other arts which arise at the same time





clearly innocuous. intent here is not to
who seems





to have understood God's

his line. Cain clearly did wrong, forgiveness of Cain in the
not punish

most perverse possible manner

(i.e., God does


therefore we

have to do I

unto others

omen of the violence to come story. would

before they do it unto us!), appears as an unsavory in Genesis 6. So there are dark spots in the Cain
that the association of the city with violence,

insist, however,

though a genuine theme of
conclusion remains

that urban

life, in any

ambiguous as a

Genesis 4, is not put in such a way as to force the of its aspects, must be rejected. The city moral and political possibility; neither God nor the

judges it.

This is

in Genesis 6. When "all


corrupt upon the

earth, much is said of wickedness and violence, but






nothing is said of cities or because the people of the Seth sense,
city, are condemned along with
not connected with urbanism


who are not associated with



Cain's line. The
or political

as such.



general, and



fact, it



contended that

absence of political structures and of would seem



it is precisely the led to the wickedness. This

by the fact that God gave the first laws after the if to try to avert a repetition of the same wickedness. If we now turn to the cities of Genesis 10, we discover that they emerge in the context of obedience to God's intentions. That context is provided Gene
Flood (Genesis 9.1-7),

to be confirmed



9. We

that in Genesis 1 God ordered

Adam to be


the earth. In Genesis 9 Noah takes the place of

fruitful, multiply, and Adam, and is given

and and seems an improvement on the relationship unit. families (mishpahoth) Shem. that Nimrod's rule was a One might even argue that. (9. built by Asshur. God's command and In this context of obedience to family solidarity. the goodness. The next a region called in Shinar. The "king occurring in Genesis for the first time. must not conclude. the between Cain nation. the "nations. The familial basis of nations seems to offer the possibility of internal concord within each nation. that We may now be able to fathom the Calvin Nimrod was a "mighty hunter." earth becomes peoples of common nations. a slight modification to Genesis 1 . which had no such structure discernible. for the laws of God (Gen. The first cities are or comes to rule.19). amicably dividing the world themselves.1-7) to be enforced. 9. suggests in which one will rule over many. If this automatically and a new political ordering suggests ruthless power tyranny to modem ears. 13). therefore.The similar City in Genesis 15 It is as instructions in language that is very strongly reminiscent of Genesis 1. Ham. both over Israel and over other nations (cf. in this overspreading. It also helps maintain concord between stay together. however. if we are watching a new creation. whenever the tribal or them. the race of Adam is being given a second chance at life. The Bible acknowledges that good kings can exist. an a world organized on the world by the new political seems to be improvement before the Flood. will have a legal dimension absent from the old. Ham. people need to have some kind of authority set over a tribal or monarchical nature. One wicked one.1-7). that populated not merely by individuals but by descent speaking a common tongue and occupy ing a traditional land. The new begin ning. Thus. the city arises. is. these Nimrod either builds group arises in the east as well. among Japheth separate violence. they occupy it as they were meant to. which are life. and since they too are related. The peacefulness of the process reminds one of the separation of Abraham and Lot (Gen. In this new creation. which echoed Genesis 1 generally. those restraining murder and improper diet (9." for the Biblical statement and Augustine saw this as indicating was savagery and oppression. Genesis 10 documents this family by family. Recall that in Genesis 9. which relied too much on we are innate human told. without Thus. There is another interpretation. cities a son of Shem. sons of Noah are obedient in the way that the sons of Adam were never said to be: they "overspread" the whole earth overspreading. This time. something is added: God gives the first laws. Nimrod is word have begun his "kingdom" in the first in Shinar. the new creation as it were. Abel. in the east. either built by or Nimrod in said to dom. the migrating offspring of Shem. we must remember and that that such a form of rule was very common in ancient times. whether of The Bible may be suggesting that kingship arises national structures are felt to be inadequate to enforce the the barest minimum for a decent social reason Noachide laws. the Biblical narrator would not auto matically have assumed such a rule to be evil." Asshur. naming the lands and peoples descending from and Japheth. Since. Abimelech in Genesis 20).

that the rule of a hunter may symbolize the over urban civilization improvements elements of the new world over the old.16 Interpretation God does dread" made. did the mighty men of old (6. strained passion. first hunter. may remind us of the wicked men before the Flood. the text is which teaching at that the rise of Nimrod possibility is new and. Finally. For these reasons. vulnerability to random killing). I represents a political would argue. in which other forms of suffering must have been prevalent (starvation after crop failure. At God's com the rule of mand are ruled not by kings. as did Cain (4.8) and before the Lord (10. one must conclude that cannot as such. Their sins cannot be imputed to him on the strength Thus. Nimrod does not name any cities after himself or after not attribute as "name" does his son. Genesis 1 allows implicitly taught that man was to be vegetarian. at overspread the earth at least potentially.23-24). Nimrod does not boast about himself. The new world contains harsh (men killing animals. God-sanctioned It is true that Nimrod. but it is less it has possibilities for something desperate.9). and so did his empire. and as did Lamech (4. In this context. I would suggest. but human for up as prey beings. city building.17). Kings may (I Samuel 8). the first have taken advantage of the new bequest God has "might" given. good. at hunting makes He may not have been him the hunter par example of the new. condemn be evil. Nimrod and his city compare favorably with the Cain line and its city and the Babel-builders their city. but it is others who note his greatness on the earth (10. least some of the nations which legitimately source. The likely to make men hopeless or pre-Flood world. One can grant that a king may become a one must also grant that a king can establish the rule of law. not speak of upon the "dominion" over the animals which are now given "fear and animals. from the above discussion.4) or the Babel (1 1. but the text attempt be God's recommended least not for his own chosen people nowhere indicates that kingship is an illegitimate permis- to maintain order and justice in human life. In important respects. and that Nimrod's hunting is not in itself a his cities. we must ing was Lamech's. Nimrod became famous. but his literally and hence the most striking excellence. Genesis 9 to him to be person carnivorous. unlike Lamech's. men ruling men). may not be pretty. the order of creation. but it is perhaps less harsh than the pre-Flood world. "mighty" being "mighty" a hunter. of a any more. then. note that which the only version of law and order hitherto obtain something tyrant. by God's .4). but multiple vengeance driven by unre (mamlakhah) introduces into the world more stable and orderly. in fact. new order higher than the Note Nimrod does also that the text not seek a builders of any motive of vanity to Nimrod." can one fault Nimrod? He is person said the first in the text said that is. kings are one possible source of law. how to be a "hunter. which consisted rule in Nimrod's prescribes moderate and measured punishments. but those men were characterized by neither hunting hunting. Nimrod. basis to nor of an adjective alone.

in the Babel there features grant. God wants them to move outward. He. 428). is perhaps reminiscent Cain's Yet motives. No one people (which is why I would con- . that is. It "scattered. the language of unity and solidarity (Combs and "rules" Post. by natural a by (literally or figu the refuse Adam." therefore are separated and moved over the earth in a more unnatural and violent manner. They "scattered. is by Calvin. turns his prowess toward the ruling of peoples. the language of mutual entreaty.The sion a ect City in Genesis 17 mighty hunter. but it is not to be so lightly condemned as it the rabbis. At this and will draw heavily upon the work of Eugene Combs Kenneth Post and attempt to confirm their analysis by the Babel-builders of Genesis 11 with Nimrod and the peoples of comparing Genesis 10. Rather. in one place. too. the Babel-builders' adventure of mastering. seems to have nothing to do seems storming heaven defying God. p. His proj may be ambiguous." is only fitting. it to be a certain un populating. instead of a multitude of warring of the nations? What is wrong as with the wish of the Babel- builders? To think this The language out requires some care. The their cautiousness. to the motives of the will builders which the traditional exegesis redeeming does not the I my discussion by showing exactly in what respects Babel-builders are are condemned point by I the text. and he. The "sons men" Noah. Babel-builders is. their fear of being a inward-looking attitude. Regarding this story. something. then. settled on Genesis 9 that they should fill the earth. are there is a a justification for the traditional however. that the Babel story they are a of There is "scattering" to carry out their true difference between the "overspreading" of Genesis 10 if and the Genesis 11. The "sons ratively) of reproducing and nonviolently occupying the earth. and Augustine. of super-city with together." of perhaps educated obey God. God at the end of purpose. The 11. among these Combs and Post point out. built desire for city in the east where he could can one condemn the Babel-builders for their we not social and geo graphic cohesion? a noble aspiration? Would Do normally call we the solidarity of the human race we not often say that believe that the in world would be better off if there were only one great people. like Cain's.4). I think. in a its top in the heavens. I certain turn to the Babel story. the descendants of Flood. united brotherly love. speaking one language. They want live.5). as of (11. scattered.28). if it and was a sin. close even antiurban exegesis. and enjoying the earth. They heavenward (11. aim spreading master to many spots. They one spot. kind people of Babel do to not wish to be "scattered" upon the earth (Gen. be was afraid of safe. too. This desire runs counter to God's all and commandments of want Genesis 1 to build upward. and in what respects their ambitions legitimate. case of Babel is not exactly typical city. to obey God. Further. process. The with sin of the Babel-builders. wants them to the earth (1.4). of willingness to take on the adventure of human life. is. who have not learned the lesson that the Flood. Finally.

The or reputation earn. and if every individ that state that will is so thoroughly committed to the own common ends of its evil cannot be perceived even by its to members. will in the very next story in the Bible promise to make great the name of a certain nation.18 tend Interpretation Nimrod had nothing to do work with the construction of the Babel which of Genesis imposed con 11). so that become nations and war with each other? Why not leave the entire human race in one construc tive unity? The Combs-Post answer. they dream. It is more likely that the Babel- "name" for their project to christen the marvellous urban struc they have created. were tribal and monarchical. The forms of govern men" ment." which are "kingdoms" connected with essentially families writ large. The desire to live in overlooks the is risk that the single. is that it is not for human beings to be of utterly that there and arising a different ways of peaceful. speaking. It is true that they wish eternity. but that does not necessarily imply rebellion against rebelling against builders want a ture God. hold them together in Shinar forever. in if taking into account the desire of the Babel-builders. noble it may be. only language that exists should If the only state. In Genesis nized 10. the world was orga according according to the to "nations. validated by the consensus of everyone in it. In fact. unified world-state. become corrupt. will and to give it." a and that this may indicate worldly pride. are not malicious. This form of social organization is in trast to the forms described in Genesis 10. built. his people who accepted the limitations of of nationhood. and the only people. good which so I think is the one correct one. Why might the author of Genesis think such a project scatter a group of people who are working together Why should God fraternally for a common they can bad? end. and seem to be peaceful and nonviolent. having unable promised never destroy the world again with a Flood. then. no possibility of the living. but he will obtain the reward sought "name" by the Babel-builders will not Genesis 11. separate peoples. may be and the ual or become dedicated to bad ends. wanting as is fact. unified world-state. as it were. however. the nation sired by Abraham. be for . Cain may have been proud of his city. In Genesis not allow of 11. They do not wish to God. then. the situation be irreparable. and themselves. its be to stop the corrupted universal state from retaining all members in thrall for Therefore. a permanent essence which. Abraham will continue in the tradition of obedience a not Further. because they are "one speech" to rule over they do not need a monarch them because they have already imposed a unity of purpose on and wish to remain that way. God. would God. they do not even mention him. the "sons of will founding "nations. however thinking. established by the "sons of Noah" of Genesis 10. they on together as equal partners toward a goal is not them but chosen by themselves.7 overthrow "name. and powerful cities." of that is. "name" necessarily an improper desire. God cannot allow it to be The Babel-builders. but he was not God in naming it after his son.

Robert Sacks. and human decency for any length Like Cain's city "Enoch. p. XV. in the bequest epitome of evil and order of animal flesh in Genesis 9. but for purity.: Penguin. . Eng. John Calvin. law. Gerald Friedlander (New York: Hermon Press. Rev. trans. but these motives were not wicked.: McMaster University. 1. Although the political order is less than in that it requires the exercise of force. King (Edinburgh. as city of Enoch. Commentary on the Pentateuch (selections). that the city cities were Genesis 1-11 would seem is not evil. flawed and susceptible to abuse as they are. John trans. arts. pp. The mo tives of those who built the first mixed. 2 vols. 12. 256. And in one case. Cain was afraid of afraid of what death. trans. trans. the world which is being properly populated by the sons of Noah. The traditional pious exegesis of Genesis fails to understand that merely human are achieve political orderings. in Ralph and Muhsin Mahdi. Ont. 1970). he is the first to explicitly a political in the new world. Deut. "Piety and Four" Civilization: An Analysis of the City in Genesis results (Hamilton. Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. the order represented perfect by Nimrod is essential. 1985). 158. Augustine.The martial City in Genesis 19 valor. to teach.6). eds. the only possible means by which the non-Israelite children of Noah can justice upon the earth. Concerning the City of God Against the Pagans. Medieval Political Philosophy (Ithaca: Cornell University Press. or not trusting enough in God's promises to obey his wishes. or for building great towers into the a heavens.) Lemer 1978). in Genesis 10. Jacob Neusner. 4. it due to knowing God wanted. NOTES 1. (Title henceforth: City of 5. and not always the best. whose claim to leadership might be said to be indirectly authorized by God himself. vol. There are grammatical and general grounds built the city. The arguments for this are well summarized for arguing that it was Enoch. Nimrod is establish not the rebellion. 44-48. then. we find that cities are built by a masterly figure. Cain's son.7.3. if one wished to put the city in a better light. 242. which once achieved will make Israel blessing and a source of wisdom for all the nations of the earth (Gen. But I do I do not believe that Genesis wishes us to understand Cain as funda stained mentally evil or ungodly. 2. because Cain is not so commentators make out." Nimrod's cities are the "inauguration" of something new: a social order in which justice can have a foothold. Isaac Abravanel. Commentaries on the First Book of Moses Called Genesis. If these people strayed. 196-98. 1972). who in Isaac Friedman's thesis. God. 4. pp. Cain pp. trans. 1847). argue that the evils of 1979). The city is not bad as some of the rabbis and Christian by its association with Cain.. which do not claim the benefit of God's direct rule and teaching. was the Babelers were not being scattered. Genesis Rabbah. 150 51. (Atlanta: Scholars Press. In societies other than Israel. One separated could use Friedman's (though he does not) to can be from the not require this argument. it is can only in coexist some kind of political order that the of time. Henry Bettenson (Harmondsworth. 3. p.

I have only scratched the surface of the Combs-Post account of the Babel story. In a general way. 1987). Eugene Combs and Kenneth Post. it is no longer possible for me to tell reliably which ideas were originally mine and which theirs. "Has YHWH cursed the Ground? Perplexity of Interpretation in Genesis in Lyle Eslinger and Glen Taylor. I am going to dispense for the most part with notes. Sacks in turn acknowledges his immense debt to Leo introduced him to Genesis. A Commentary on the Book of Genesis (Lewiston. whose "Jerusalem and Strauss. Eugene Combs. I too have been influenced by the various Strauss on the Bible and wish to acknowledge it fully. . except when I can clearly recall a specific indebtedness.. As I have been deeply engaged with this material for a number of eds. MA: JSOT Press. I know of no other philosophical and exegetical treat the Babel story of comparable length and depth. in my necessary simplification the Combs-Post of the Babel story which discussion. Readers who wish to think about its depths more fully should read the chapter on Genesis 1 1 (pp. But I give here a very firm acknowledgment that many of my specific sug gestions must have come from them. whose 1990 work was available to them Athens" in typescript form much earlier. I have doubtless been influenced by another very rich interpretation in some respects resembles it. I add that. Ascribe to the Lord: Biblical and Other Studies in years. 6. 1990). even though Strauss is not cited in this essay because he does not deal with the specific passages I am working on here. Craigie (Sheffield. 1988). NY: Edwin Mellen Press. and that my general line of approach is completely theirs. C. NY: Edwin Mellen Press. 1-5. and undoubtedly to the rabbinic tradition of interpretation shows writings of up in Sacks's work. S. Lewis's novel That Hideous Strength. Due to space limitations.20 Interpretation 6. The Foundations of Political Order in Genesis and the Chandogya Upanisad (Lewiston. Robert Sacks. I add that Combs and Post would probably transfer much credit for their ideas to Sacks. hence." Memory of Peter C. and to Leo Strauss. which who essay was seminal for them. ment of of 405-39) in the work cited.

in Volume 25 of Interpretation. They come out and return unto no 5 "Who6 sent the wild ass7 off to be free?8 And who has untied the reins of the untamed off jenny. Num 3. or clothe its like a locust when the glory and exults at neck with a mane? of his snort breeds terror? 21 He digs up the valleys. You see. she has no fear 17 because God has understanding. he every green thing is his crib? plow to search out.The Book Translation of and Job Commentary on Chapters 39 through 42 Robert D. 1 . and she has no share in 18 She just flaps her rider. John's College. 26. as if they were not even in all vain. or that a wild beast might trample them down.10 9 "Would the 10 Can is you wild ox agree to serve you? Would spend the night at your up the valleys great. Santa Fe CHAPTER THIRTY-NINE 1 "Do you know the when it is time for the mountain goat to drop?1 and have hind writhing in the dance of birth?2 2 Can you the months they fulfill? and do you know the season for them to deliver. meet armed combat. and who dwells city.9 bustling hills as of the hear the drivers 8 but roams the his pasture. 15 She has forgotten that hers. appeared nor is he turned The first bers 2 and thirty-eight chapters of the translation and and commentary in Volume 24. Fall 1998. Vol.12 whimsically flaps her wings as if she had the pinions and 14 but leaves her eggs on the ground for the dust to keep a them warm. Sacks St.14 wings as if on high. and does not and even in the salt lands? 7 He laughs shout. 16 She treats her were all children roughly. hitch him up with a rope and hold him to the furrow? Will he behind you? 11 Would you rely upon him? Remember. No. his you strength Could leave him it into the your toils? 12 Would you trust him to bring in the grain and gather barn?" 13 "An ostrich plumage of a stork. in his is not strength as he goes out to 22 He laughs fear and dismayed.5 thrive and flourish in the wild. interpretation. and thus to end their they couch and split you watched number3 open4 travail? 4 Their her children more. and laughs at a passing and its 19 "Did you give to the horse 20 Can you make him leap its strength. 3 when to give birth to their young. horse'3 her to forget wisdom. 6 whose home I have at the made the wilderness. Her toils caused foot can crush them.

" . 25 but facing battle from afar. and each of them is either a close relative to a tame species or made is itself a member of species of animals some of whom have tame. There he The The The will meet six sets of wild beasts: rock-goat and wild ass and untamed jenny wild ox ostrich The The horse The hawk None been of and eagle them is mythical. His swill it from afar. forever Ner. it originally meant "to whirl. which have here translated by the phrase of our I have generally translated birth" is "writhing in the dance of "writhe. The and single Hebrew word hul. he is there. consume the of their gates. making it his stronghold. It is to leam what each would be when viewed from the other but absolute veil They remind us of that thin between the world of man and the world beyond 39:18 man. by the flashing into the spear and the earth. the roars of the hawk16 the trumpet the he cries captains and the shoutings!" 26 "Is it by your wisdom that soars and spreads its wings out to the south? 27 Does the eagle mount at your command." a very will complex word. eye spots He takes up his lodging on the highest 29 From there he searches out his prey. 30 and his fledglings down the blood. he said. Whenever death defiles. 2Sam."18 Comments 1. Indeed. 24 With he gouges pays no homage to trumpet's 'Huzzah' ! He smells the blast. unity that lies within the complexity As far as one can tell. much understanding of the Book of Job center on our attempt to regain the sense of of this word. 3:28 are of Afterward. Job has entered far into hind what we have come to call the Land of the Jackal. Oh. David heard of it. 23 A quiverful of arrows whizzes excitement and agitation.22 back Interpretation by He edge of sword. and See notes to 26. building its nest on high? 28 He dwells upon the rock. and upon all his when devour them in their fortresses. 2. 1 1 :6 The bars sword shall "whirl and down" against their cities. guiltless May my kingdom before the LORD for the blood of Abner the son it whirl down upon the head of Joab. "I and father's house. if we were in Hebrew they have totally different names." Hos. javelin. although almost as side.17 pinnacle.

and go to the land of Benjamin. if the daughters of Shiloh come out win to dance the dances. and watch. Then. Benjaminites did so. Deut. "Go and lie in in the vineyards.The Book of Job It can also mean 23 "to dance. Grant them graciously to us. in her hand. only to the book Judges. too." Sometimes it is and exultation: used in a perfectly wonderful context which can be full of joy Psa. her took a timbrel and all the women went out after with timbrels and dancing. the reader can feel a foreboding thought thickening the air. saying. Exod. 15:20 Then Miriam. anguish who shall hear the report of tremble and be in because of you. that book which begins see them dashed. they will be in anguish over the Tyre. The Book rule. else you would now be guilty. and rebuilt the towns. the prophetess. then come out of the vineyards and seize of each man his wife from the daughters their Shiloh. according whom they carried off. because we for each man of them his wife in battle. ends in fright and of a with such high hopes for self- the clear need of the one thing had hoped to avoid. And the to their number. 51:29 When the report about report comes to Egypt. 21:20 wait And they commanded the Benjaminites. then they went and returned inheritance. and dwelt in them. It "anguish" often means and "pain": Isa. 149:3 Let them timbrel and praise his name with dancing. 2:25 This day I will begin to put the dread and fear of you upon the peoples that are under the whole you and shall heaven." or "to quake": The voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness. Judg. the sister of Aaron. it Psa. neither did you give them to them. from the dancers to their and took their wives. king. making melody to him with lyre! But more often than not things get out of hand. we will when fathers or their brothers come to complain did not take say to them. 32:19 And as soon as Moses' he came near the dancing. 29:8 comes to mean "to tremble. trembles and writhes The land in pain. for the Lord's purposes . 23:5 Jer. and often when first reading the word. And to us. hands anger burned hot. foot and camp and saw the calf and the he threw the tables out of his and broke them at the of the mountain. the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh. Exod.

in visiting the day of birth. tempest. and ISam. it can also mean "to be in labor. or even a mortal injury: The battle hard found him. To venture beyond the realm of man and to see each thing as having its own pain of was caused signet means to come to birth terms with the unity of all these things we must look at: opposing feelings. your vindication as Ps. out of his sight. 32:18 the You God He were unmindful of who gave you the Rock that begot you. 25:23 The north wind and a backbiting tongue. brings forth rain. it the storm of the will LORD! Wrath has head gone forth. But. and you forgot birth. There is Jer. they aghast at looks. and the archers he was badly wounded by the archers. 31:3. thy judgments puffs at them." and hence "to give Deu. For this reason." English-speaking in this also recognize . Job." If the as we words and ideas the were intended pas- by the author to come together as naturally they do for may reader who knows the "whirlwind. 23:19 one more aspect of Behold. the mean "pain" "anguish" same word that meant and can also "to prosper": Psa. Here there is no indication that the by a curse or the result of having taken a bite of the apple.24 Interpretation against without Babylon stand. as for his foes. was revisiting the day of his own birth. They look another. to make the land of Babylon a desolation. a whirling burst upon the of the wicked. Ps. birth": as in our case. angry them. he We a man can now begin to understand the great admonition: "Gird your loins like is put (gebher). in and your right as the noonday. and sin did my mother Prov. brought forth in iniquity. 13:8 and will one they will be dismayed. 37:6 will bring was forth the light. 10:5 His ways prosper at all all times. I conceive me. 51:5 Behold. their faces be aflame. Isa. pressed upon Saul. Pangs like a woman will and agony will seize will be in anguish in travail. Note the phrase "a whirling word tempest. inhabitant. are on high." There is wildness and pain present when the signet to the clay to make a thing of value and worth.

8. are 3. 5. speaks to Job. In using such a harsh word. the joys of our world could never come to be. since. 7. Yet we can all world. it would be best to begin by seeing how the is in other Biblical contexts: . It is the whirling. the wild ass wild ass unlike donkey and the burro. the separation of birth is that our hard and as final as the separation of death. we can begin to see its own necessities which seems to be see that without such a totally indifferent to our sense of order. This. But quite even Job. fostering in each life to own its signet. has never known either burden or rein. an order for the first time. dancing. lets interrelated that they cannot be of distinguished in speech. Here. the Voice is beginning to open Job to different kind of order. Job already had Job 6:5 some care Will the bray when there is grass? Eliphaz had Job 11:12 none: Hollow a man man will become thoughtful when the wild ass gives birth to ('adam). perhaps with beyond world. The question is. 66:7 her Before here from the Book in labor she gave Isaiah: pain came upon she was birth. The Voice here as reminds Job that in its own way. is land? the question to Job: Can he discern number and order in this untrodden 4. and understanding the of the one may lead us in coming to terms with the other. going off about their labors of snatching up dawn. and are what they are. before her she was delivered of a son. then. pain-ridden. The had been for it: wild ass mentioned several times in the text before. of course. How different things Isa. She. and in terms of human justice it a world seems all wrong. number and season as well as pleasure being according and pain are an integral part of the way in which things come to be what they If God is are.The Book of Job sage some 25 foundation for the shift we had already begun to feel in the role of the feminine. while he showed a certain amount of compassion. a nurturing god rather than a constructing god. did not have the respect that these lines demand: Job 24:5 They are wild asses at in the desert. From the point of view of human justice there is no priori reason a a why birth our should entail so much pain. 6. for the Hebrew word for tempest is see that pain and birthing a tempest that Job joy and birth are so feminine noun. rhetorical. To word understand used this passage.

to oppressed go free. It is true that. 15:12 If your brother. 34:9 and to break every every yoke?" that one should set free his Hebrew slaves. gave no answer. that was true. "Is not and make his father's house free in choose: Isa. and But if the slave plainly says. Small and great. he shall serve six years.26 Interpretation Exod. 17:25 go free from men of And the come up? Israel said. all are there. so that no one should enslave a Jew. along many others. 58:6 fast that I loose the bonds let the of wickedness. female. did have a slave or servant: Job 19:16 to I called to my servant." since the with language does not distinguish between "slave" and Job. and in the seventh he shall go out free. to undo the thongs of the yoke. that show his concern. and you had set them into subjection to free according to their desire. the At the who end of six years each of you must set free fellow Hebrew has been free from sold to you and your service." daughter. but he him for favor. years. ears to me. to and the man who and will give Israel. and the slave is free his lord. his brother. "Have come you seen this man who has him kills him. go out free. great riches. for nothing. Job 7:2 Like his a slave he yearns for the shadows. but they were treated kindness: justly and . be your slaves. has served you six years. Jer. Job himself had once said nearly the same thing: Job 3:18-19 There driver's prisoners are wholly at ease for they do not even hear the of voice. And there are other passages. and in the seventh year you shall let him ISam. he shall serve you six you. eye of my his slave. male and . When a man strikes the . "I love my master. and destroys it. too. or a Hebrew woman. 21:2 When you buy a Hebrew slave. my wife. you must set him But your fathers did you not listen to me or incline their but then turned around and profaned male and my name when each of you took whom you back his female slaves. and like a hireling he waits for wages. sake. "servant. children. the his Surely king this the he has up to will enrich with defy Israel. he a shall let the slave go free for the Deut. and now must I curry They with were servants or slaves. is sold to you. brought 9. I will not male or eye's female. . Hebrew man.

the cedars of . the heron according to its kind.." time. It is in noticeable Job 4:18-19 If He with the exception of 39:24. not certain what bird is meant. 11. the hoopoe. the vulture. both for moved for others. To put it other who were deeply by the pain and wise. in God speaks of contrast to what Eliphaz had said: put no trust in His servants and to a His angels lays charge of folly. It is generations. Even from was within the human sphere. Job world sees a world chaotic as which all things are trusted rather than watched. and he did "hitch But to "trust them to bring in the up and hold them to the grain" would." answer can do none of these things. Human art is only the vaguest image of the world which farm. what would or maid when when they brought complaint against me. it will be a long journey. Job but. the way each thing is when prior to either the arts or to tradition. The trees of the Ps. they are an abomination: the eagle. The an furrow.. the osprey. has kept itself in bal legitimate claim to be much older than or nature. the . giving it a The signets." This is the only verse. as we shall see. But the discovery of the notion that slavery is wrong as such. "trust. five hundred of them. It is through seeing the wild ass as having a life of freedom becomes important to their way its own. regardless of whether there is pain and suffering involved or not. it requires something like the concept of a signet. in unrecorded Bildad's "first left to itself. oneself and men could always see that slavery unpleasant. they and be eaten. it may seem. whose foundation is but dust? or Job 15:15 He clean puts no trust sight. is 12. that its us. in His Holy Ones and even the heavens are not in His Because trusted to each thing is what it is beyond the in sphere of man. 104:16 LORD abundantly. roaming the hills as his pasture. There were always some men suffering it caused.The Book of Job Job 31:13-14 If ever 27 man I felt contempt for the cause of one of my servants. the stork. of course have been out of the question. are watered bat. each thing can be be what it is. and many of them devoted their lives to alleviating that suffering. That is not to say that such ideas cannot find world back into the human is No. requires a certain admiration for the wild ass. but here is have in abomination what is known: Lev. I do God rose up? 10. ance The farm. and them yet he did have ox. what of those who dwell in house of clay. 11:13 And these shall not you shall among the birds.

8:7 Even the swallow. The first thing to be moving any to be asked. he will dwell on the heights. but two obscure and sometimes inter chinks weaving of the Human and the wall. Part irony of this passage ridden is that ostriches. foresaw hibernation? It he warned Job not to leave his warm den of would seem that there are not one. ears his looking upon his hands. 33:15 He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly. 16. must 14. had been domesticated. the has her home in the fir stork Jer. people crane keep the time of their coming. character that each 17. who from hearing of bloodshed and shuts his eyes from evil. too. who despises the gain of stops oppression. but my know Zech. 5:9 not the ordinance of the LORD. and eyes and saw. with lowest in man have a certain kinship home the lands that lie beyond that If Job is to return safely to the human of man. For Job this have been the fearful to most difficult of the beasts to meet thus far. The imagery is not uncommon in the Bible. silly beast. In them the birds build trees. lest they hold a bribe. earth and It is probable that the author intended or a double irony. but the significance has greatly changed: Isa. insofar as been domesticated. and the turtledove. 15. then. subhuman might own why the human soul should find itself so moved by the of a beast that could mean to it nothing other than its for such a and why the author should wish to arouse in Job an admiration beast. destruction are said of these verses is that the Hebrew text is Agincourt. their nests. pathways which lure men like Job toward the in the Great Wall Both the highest City and that reveal its problematic character. Yet at the same time we are horrified know that if she were a fellow- citizen our arraign as judgment have to be Our quite otherwise and we would have to her for child abuse. and behold. Who help being totally would charmed by the and foolish antics of this silly. The first as words ever spoken on the field at questions savage. Then I lifted my forward! The of a stork." 13. There is an early bas relief from Khorsabad showing a falconer bearing a hawk on his wrist. since the name of this bird means something like of the "piety" "loving by care. two women wind was in their wings. The hawk. at least it is the can most write about. when if only in part. and in the heavens knows her times. have been were some tribesmen of the area as they have if they horses. they had lifted they up the ephah between wings coming like the wings heaven. his place of defense who shakes . worlds are met beginning to pull apart and to clash they have for Job as since we first him. he must learn to feel and to recognize all sides of the may find its proper place.28 Interpretation Lebanon stork which he planted. Does this not mean raising the very passions in Job that Elihu.

and you must let me know. know whether Job or it the horrified be he did a not see. however. for your own right have saved . the ostrich was unable CHAPTER FORTY 1 And the LORD wrangle with swer. is high." answered Job and said: would 2 "Should convict a man of discipline the Almighty? One who God must give an an 3 Then Job can answered the LORD and said: 4 "I have become so weak. his bread will be given him. and can you thunder in that you a voice such as His?3 splendor. like the dove that The horror dwell in the rock. 13 Bury them all in the dust. Put on glory and 11 Let fly the outbursts of your anger. bring clefts will down from there. his of water be sure. deck yourself out in majesty and dignity. twice.The Book of Job will will 29 be the fortresses of rocks. the you you who dwell in the clefts of the rock. who hold the height I will of hill. bring down to the is Though you soar aloft will like the eagle. is in the not Job. did for its children all that the charm to do."1 loins like Would might a man (gebher)2: I will question you. 14 Then you. you though your nest says the among the stars. Though The you make your nest as as the eagle's. in returning to flow off into death. 10 "Go ahead. 48:28 Jer. 5 I have spoken once. pride of your whose says the LORD. to of life life about precisely because he did see that the hawk. 1:3 heart has deceived you. 49:16 Leave the cities. 12 Look down the I upon everyone of majestic pride and majestic pride and abase bring hand him low and tread guilty. high and the pride of your heart. but I have no answer. we shall see next charming as his sister bird the chapter. 18. The ostrich. Bind their faces in would obscurity. O inhabitants in the Moab! Be nests sides of the mouth of a gorge. me dwelling set say in heart.4 even would praise you. and Jer. the hawk. sixth as beast. you who your Obad. The cold and more grotesque. order 8 you shatter be right? my judgment? Would you condemn me in 9 Have you an arm like God's. but I cannot 6 And the LORD answered Job out of the Tempest and said: 7 "Gird up your I answer You? I lay continue. LORD. thence I bring down. The sight of the blood and the gore have numbed carnage made was so him. Look upon every man of him. who ground?" live in the "Who of the rock. How my hand upon my mouth. Elihu's so implicit claim that no man is enough of a man (gebher) to face the world of nature seems to be vindicated. has been defeated. cause longterm planning that led up to the We do not. you inspire has deceived you.

He eats fodder just like the cattle. God's argument is. 17 He can stretch out his sinews of strength in his loins. But the Tempest will go. 16 but just look at the is in the muscles of his belly. his warning was just. and you will remember war no Comments no answer. hiding in the reeds and the fen. or pierce speak to you servant?13 29 "Can ladies?14 play you with him like a bird hold or tie of him on a string for your young 30 Or 31 Can can the dealers get him and trade their shares in the spears? market? fill his hide hand with 32 Merely place your upon harpoons. that was always the problem: Job 9:19 If trial be by strength." 2. had been what God had wanted. or his head with fishing his head. If Job's this not point. beyond man is no place for a man.9 brook in him. under and all the beasts of the field play. his limbs Maker like rods of 19 He is the first of God's ways. who would plead my case? . 24 Can he be taken by the eyes? or pierced the nose with a 25 jaw "Can" you haul in the Leviathan12 with a fishhook? Can through you press down his his tongue with a with the line? 26 Can you put a barb? 27 Will he always softly? 28 Will he you make a covenant ring be coming to implore you. He is the mighty one. and can you thunder in a voice let Job "telling." again "asking. and if by court of law. Indeed. His ducts might tail stiff as a cedar. He has been numbed as if stung by the Socratic sting fish. Now ray he neither knows nor believes that he knows. but he did not. The world Job has been converted from the Brother of and that the Jackal to one who would "call out to the muck 'Mother' 'Sister' 'Thou Father' art my right and call out and recantation to the maggots. somewhat more specific than one might at first take it to be." His?" such as God seems to base His argument on His power. are The and his thighs are are all knit together. 20 "The there to mountains yield him produce. I believe. 18 His bones iron. but Job had always recognized God's greater power. The sight of the six beasts has 1 Job has . "gird up your loins like a man (gebher)".30 * Interpretation Behemoth5 15 "But look now. confident that the Jordan will mouth. 23 Though the burst into his snare?10 river he is unalarmed. "Have you an arm like God's.7 Only his come can approach him with a sword. here is whom I made along with you. He has it here at There would have been no need to continue. Once Job thought that he knew what justice was. 22 The lotuses blanket him surround with their shade and the willows of the rage.8 21 He lies down the lotuses.6 of brass. or with you to be your eternal his nose. and his teaching is not a but an 3. Again it says. convinced him that Elihu was right.

1:7 The fear wisdom and of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge. a good understanding have ever! all those who practice it. are all who teaches us more The verbs. not turn out to be the and Job has yet much to the spirit behind the administration of that justice. however. clearly are of mythic proportion. Appropriately enough. Man is 7. created me at the beginning his work. God is joking." in the made masculine singular. 4:7 The get. and his limbs like rods of The visible universe is much larger than any man knows and of which he is unaware. 111:10 contains creatures which man not did not name and the unquestioned center of all that is visible. is this: Get wisdom. The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom. than the beasts of the earth. 8:12 . behemoth 5. These do cosmos. dwell in prudence. His praise endures for Prov.The Book of Job When Job thought that he knew what 31 had justice was. being lous nor mythical. it has justice was defective in that he had problem of not realized that an adequate attempt requires that one to address the sphere of human justice prob journey human justice to face the lem deal of what one might wish with to call cosmic justice. and I find knowledge of and discretion. Job's search a world for human justice has led him into relevant. In the become clear that Job's understanding beyond the last two chapters. of The LORD acts of old. Job 12:7 beasts and they will show you. ." "His bones are ducts brass. whom I along eats fodder just like the neither miracu It is a normal part of the greater world around us. his wisdom. of wisdom Prov. Prov. I. The word is the normal plural of the feminine noun behemah. "Behemoth cattle. however 6. the first 8. "laugh" or . The next two chapters will the question of the administration of that justice. get beginning insight. We have which means already seen any large domesticated it in Job: Just ask the animal such as a cow or an ox. however. Compare Ps. iron. he of also thought that he the means to establish that justice. fools despise and whatever you instruction. and it will take Job a time to see within the implications of that kind of justice as it expresses itself the sphere of human action. of It is. Job 18:3 Job 35:10-11 Why none are we considered beasts and made unclean . means by which justice is established in the learn of 4. in your eyes? say "Where is God my maker. . in which human action no longer seems Its vast forces are so wide seen and no outburst of his anger ever sweeping that no decking would ever be be felt. with you . .

a and said to himself. making it his drinking foun tain. But from the Gen. There is. and you shall call his name Isaac." I believe that the role subject plays a of in the Book with Job which differs from its in the other the Bible. I will establish my covenant with him as an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him. that she had laughed. He finds Thus. 10. 17:17 Then Abraham fell "Shall a child who his face laughed. verse inquiry be to the words shq and shq. now that and say. hand? that You have for the toil of your own You hired shall not oppress your neighbor or rob him. since words like or I shall by I'g essentially verse. tyrannizing river. 'Shall I Indeed bear I old?' am Is anything too hard . Interpretation 'Ashaq kind. world with a living being at ease of monumental stature of the This grand beast is in the land Jackal. half-real fabric reader whom of this account succeeds in leaving the feeling he has room that he shares a never seen. bear child?" next verses it becomes clear that it was not a contented laughter: said to God. note on role we must now begin a rather and long and. saying. "After I have my husband is old. no the possible exception of the Book of Proverbs. 18:13 The LORD said to a she would have felt no need to deny Abraham. child. but Sarah your wife shall bear you a son. The half-mythic. 17:18 is ninety years old. sight!" And Abraham Sarah's laughter Gen. shall I have pleasure?" grown old." as It occurs rather frequently in of the Bible and with the exception of this verse only.32 9. "mocking" It must remembered that we are only speaking of "laughter. person The first in the Bible to laugh on was Abraham: and Gen. He is passively ferocious yet actively gentle and seems to rule by laughter." looking at each usage. is usually translated "oppress." Joy and happiness are another matter. somewhat boring books foot the subject of of "laughter" "play. "No. way limit our mean of seeing that other than "derision. "O that Ishmael might live in thy God said. and But had her laughter been goodnatured. Gen. The wages of a servant shall not remain with you all night until the morning. Shall be born to a man who is a hundred years old? Sarah. however. "Why did Sarah laugh. 18:12 came next: So Sarah laughed to herself. always implies injustice the gravest Job 10:3 Lev. I fear. 19:13 Does it contempt seem good to You that You oppress. for the pounding.

saying. 21:9 to Hagar the Egyptian. "I did laugh. playing her Isaac. but did Then came the taunting laughter So Lot of the sons-in-law of Lot: who were to Gen. 19:14 went out and said to get out of this his sons-in-law. in to me to insult me. Next . place. The next two occurrences of the word are usually even translated by the word "insult": Gen." a But Sarah denied. Then came the golden calf: Exod. and rose your And the LORD said to people. "Up. whom you brought up out of the Moses. he with me." at Next there came Ishmael: But Sarah saw the son of with Gen.The Book of Job for the LORD? At the spring. for she was afraid. a When he had been there Philistines looked long time. and I cried out with a loud voice. in the saying. 39:14 she called to the men of her household and said to them. 39:17 and she told whom you in to lie him the same story. "No. And Sarah said. for land of Egypt. Foolish Isaac's innocent play Gen." the But he seemed to be jesting. and the people sat down to eat and drink. 26:8 also was actually doing." and Sarah shall have son. 21:6 city. every one hears will laugh me. "God has who made a laughingstock of me. not 33 appointed time I will return to you. 32:6 and And they rose up early on the morrow. and offered burnt offerings brought peace offerings. Abimelech Isaac out of a window and saw king of the joking with Rebekah his wife. but certainly the betrayed him. son whom she had borne Abraham. have corrupted themselves. up to play. his marry his daughters. Gen. "Go down. came "See. came have brought among us. you laugh". He said. It is hard to have any idea of what Ishmael consequences were disastrous. he me to has brought among us a Hebrew to insult us. "The Hebrew servant. for the LORD is about to sons-in-law to destroy Sarah: Gen.

Israel. but they laughed them to scorn. "Call Samson. 16:25 And when their hearts were merry.34 Interpretation Judg." twelve of the servants of his opponent by the head. David. they said. Therefore that which place was called they fell Helkathhazzurim. that he may make sport for So they called Samson out of the prison. The same might even be said for Michal: 2Sam. 30:10 So the Ephraim and Manasseh. the abased and above all people of the his house." Then come mocking and scorning couriers went 2Chron." has slain his thousands. David his ten Joab and Abner play rough: 2Sam. by them I shall be held in honor. twelve for Benjamin and Ishbosheth the son of Saul. 6:5 And David the LORD and all the house of Israel were with all their might. at Gibeon. And the anger of the LORD kindled against Uzzah. Next came laughter and a tune that led to a revolution: ISam. 6:21 And David me above your prince over said to Michal. but by the maids of whom you have spoken. Uzzah put out his hand to the ark of God took hold of it. 18:7 And the women sang to and one another as they made merry. is and thrust his sword opponent's side. with songs and making merry before lyres and harps and tambourines and castanets and cymbals. and God smote him there because he ark of put forth his hand to the ark. There is laughter no question was but that Uzzah's punishment which stemmed from the next too great." said to Joab. 2:14 And Abner us. and he made sport before them. from city to city through the country of and as far as Zebulun. And in his each caught arise. "Let the young men arise and play before And Joab said. 2Sam. for the oxen stumbled. "Let them over and by Then they arose and passed number. "Saul thousands. They made him stand between the us." pillars. so down together. and he died there beside the God. And when they came to the and was threshing floor of Nacon. "It was before the LORD. I and will make myself yet more contemptible I will be in your eyes. to appoint me as LORD and I will make merry than this. . who chose father. before the LORD. and mocked them.

laughs at the time to come. a time to mourn. rejoicing in his inhabited world and delighting in the sons of men. A good wife who can find? She is far are more precious than and she jewels. at them. O LORD. and wine gladdens life. 7:6 the by sadness of countenance the heart is made glad. 10:19 Bread is for laughter. Prov. Ecclesiastes also has a rather dim view of laughter. and I find knowledge and discretion. wicked. Strength and dignity her clothing. Eccles. wisdom. thou dost hold Peppered throughout the one quotations from the Book we of Proverbs. the fool only rages and laughs. 7:3 Eccles. at the but the LORD laughs coming. the LORD has them in derision. however. Prov. It is like sport to a then I was fool to do wrong. but wise conduct is pleasure to a man of understanding. Jeremiah is not quite the same. also will laugh at your calamity. dwell in prudence. like a master workman. 8:31 Prov. for he sees that his day is Ps. 31:10 . is vanity. Sorrow is better than laughter. I will mock when panic strikes I. 2:2 I said of laughter. 10:23 beside him. it?" Eccles. "I am only joking!" Prov. 26:18 Even in laughter the heart is sad. I you. . and a time dance. dost laugh nations in derision. 8:12 . 1:26 Prov. . 3:4 to a time to weep. and death. 52:5-6 But God will break you down for ever. Ps. and a time to laugh. 14:13 Prov. and fear. 29:9 If a wise man and an argument with a fool." and of pleasure. saying. rejoicing before him always. Prov. He too rejects the "laughter" of his day: .The Book of Job Even the good 35 laughing He at the bad is not the same as goodnatured laughter: Ps. he will snatch and tear you tent. is the man who deceives his has neighbor and says. "What use is Eccles. and I was daily his delight. 2:4 Ps. as For the crackling of thorns this also made under a pot. he will uproot you from the land The righteous shall see. so is the laughter of fools. 59:8 But thou. firebrands. there is no quiet. and shall laugh your from of the at living. 37:13 who sits in the heavens laughs. all the him. for Eccles. closer to what we finds another strain. of There only do find something find in the Book Job. Like a madman who throws and the end of joy is grief. and money answers everything. Selah. "It is mad. Prov. arrows.

8:4 sit tongue with shouts of great joy. They read as Jerusalem remembers in the days of her affliction and bitterness all the precious things that were hers from days of old. shall each with staff of the streets of the streets. 126:1 A Song of Ascents. When who the LORD restored the fortunes filled said of Zion. 30:17 the For I will restore health to you. thou hast deceived me. 20:7 stronger all O LORD. and they be be few. however. and the voices of those who make merry. and your wounds Jer. When her . and I was deceived. Jer. the we were like those and our dream. And playing in its Outside follows: Lam. and where city it shall be rebuilt upon its mound." Thus in the says the LORD of hosts: Old men and old women shall again streets of Jerusalem. Out of them shall come songs of will thanksgiving. shall not small. nor did I rejoice. then they among nations. 15:17 not sit in the company of merrymakers. I and the palace shall stand used to be. I have become a laughingstock the day. says LORD. I sat because thy hand was upon me. and have compassion on his dwellings. 48:26 "Make him drunk. for thou hadst filled me with indignation. But he also has another notion of laughter. Zech. 48:39 shame! Israel a derision to you? that whenever you spoke of you wagged your Was he found among head? How it is broken! How they wail! How Moab has turned his back in and a So Moab has become him. Jer. Was thieves. Moab shall wallow not in his vomit. they shall not It is reserved for another time and is not a way of meeting what is before us. because they have called you an outcast: 'It is Zion. him and he too shall be held in derision. multiply them. because he so that magnified himself against the LORD. every one mocks me. 1:7 of the Book of Job there are only a handful left. I will heal. "The LORD has done things for them. city be full boys and girls in hand for very age. Then our mouth was with laughter. thou art than I. for whom no one Thus says the LORD: Behold. There are also such thoughts to be found elsewhere: Ps. I did alone. I will make them honored. and thou hast prevailed. a derision horror to all that are round about and feels mocked Jer.36 Interpretation Jer. I will restore the cares!' fortunes the of the tents of Jacob.

guilty men. rooted of beasts in the safety of a fields" the but is not knew the "covenant" he will have "with the we so different from laughter laughter have known before. a one who would 'Call answer' and now joke. whose it. Mark 5:40. laughter in the Book of 8:53. Job 12:4 on also grim side of But God But whose now I have become have him a joke to my friends. FEAR will of violence when you will secure and shall have no it comes. a simple. the a side which had always been a part Job and. made him all his trouble. Job the outcast. 3:14 Ezek. but hills as his pasture. 25. They laugh at heap up earth and take on. for you have a covenant with the rocks the field. 9:24. 23:32 I have become the joke to songs all all the peoples. Mat. James 4:9). for they like the wind and go they make sport. . and does not even hear the drivers shout. if to judge by different from the others. every fortress. even before his real thought had started: Job 29:24 I joked them them a many quotations given above. The first to Job 5:21-23 speak of Job is Eliphaz: be When tongues scourge. But there of was another side of we are laughter.The Book of Job people 37 fell into the hands gloated over the foe of the foe. Have no FEAR in beasts and the earth. 1:10 contains much. and of rulers At kings they scoff. The much subject was and bound to come up. the beasts of the fields will bring His laughter is rocks and the you peace. innocent joke! those younger than Job 30:1 they have would turned me into the joke. for it Hab. you shall be laughed at and held in derision. I fathers I have felt contempt to put with my sheep dogs. Luke 6:21. none to help her. because one cannot fail to notice how play innocent laughter there is in the Tempest: He laughs Job 39:7-8 at the clamor of the roams the city. the Lord GOD: "You shall drink your sister's cup and Thus which is deep large. and every green thing is his to search out. and perhaps even before with bit so that my kindness would not overwhelm because they had no self-confidence. and there was her. Then they sweep by own might is their god! It might be noted Testament also imply in passing that the six references to laughter in the New only scoffing (cf. Lam. mocking at her downfall. the burden of their day says long. but of the at violence and starvation you of laugh.

"Let us make man in our image. and laughs at a passing horse and Job 39:22 Job 40:20 He laughs The play. mountains yield him produce. Imagine Oedipus being mistaken for a long-lost twin than of comedy. continually changing their clothing. laughter ceases to be a thing hidden away for a better time a or a luxury with indulged in by those who are mindless of the times. 1 :26 and Then God said. Some English translations 12." be more a It is in comedy tragedy that people seem more plastic. Job has come to learn from nature. and over the cattle. "It is I. but at violence and starvation you will laugh. but he has a dream: not come to be the conquerer Job 5:22 . Yet it is Lear shadow". Eliphaz once had he has seen. for you have a covenant with the rocks in the field. compare: seen as it follows from an Gen. and over every of the . was not the right slave?" dream: "Will he make a covenant with you to be your eternal To conquer rather it more succinctly.38 Interpretation Job 39:18 its She just flaps her rider. Have no FEAR of the beasts of the earth. at fear and is not dismayed. To that extent. and one of the things he learned. See note to start Chapter Forty-one at this point." some connection of between Job's new understanding sees a bit strange. With Job. subject of laughter and his Identity really discovery being what the signets. and over all the earth. the brother. is the importance of freedom understanding of the signets. At one first. 3:8 and 13. after our likeness. granted who asks: "Who is it that upon can tell me who I am? Lear's and why must Hamlet insist knows full things which can so be taken for by Rosalind. On this question. let them have dominion over the fish of the sea. and over the birds air. this relation is seems to Dane. . who well who she is even while she is being Ganymede playing Rosalind? 11. he has come to have its ways impressed upon him than impressing his ways upon it. Job has come. as we put have from the ostrich. . their iden tity. but not to it. bird and all the beasts come there to Job 40:29 Job 41:21 you play with him like ladies? young He laughs to the sound Can a or tie him on a string for your of the javelin. wings on high. nor is he turned back by edge of sword. It with is way of living the times: "I joked them a bit so that my kindness would not over whelm them because they had no It is hard not to feel that there isn't of self-confidence. but it and the beasts of the fields will bring you peace. of nature. and even their sex. Hamlet.

The world about use world beyond can man in which man can play. not as a thing for us. In many Isa. "subdue" "dominate.The Book of Job creeping thing that creeps upon the own image. but the he must perform now. it is only a in which he learn about play. and God said to them. . many of the peoples shall come. He judge between the beat nations. It house of shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the the LORD shall be established as the highest mountains. neither shall nation shall not lift up they leam war any more. and shall their swords decide for many peoples. sword against nation. in the image of God he created them." It should be noted that both words. 2: 1 this verse reminds one of the famous passage from Isaiah: The word which Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah of the and Jerusalem. Josh. But female afterward slaves they turned around and took back the male they had set free. The charm of the sentence teaches us it innocent jesting. to the house God Jacob. let of us go LORD. and say: of "Come. We cannot divide it up and as we will. you may make brethren the another. To see it is to see it as a thing for itself. "Be fill the earth and subdue it. but the beyond is not ours. male and female he fruitful and multiply. with harshness. 18:1 Then the whole congregation of the people of Israel assembled at subdued Shiloh. "subdue" In addition. to slaves of inherit as a them." and are quite defi nite and strong: Lev. But it is not the same." 39 So God created man in his created him. Jer. 34: 1 1 and set up the tent of meeting there. and and shall be raised above the hills. and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. and their spears into pruning hooks. the word for also has a sense of completion and final ity. and they shall into plowshares. earth. For that ways and that we may walk in his paths. and over the And God blessed them. and have fish of the sea and over the dominion every birds of the air and over living thing that moves upon the earth. 25:46 You may bequeath them to your possession for ever. is not a world and 14. the land lay before them. and subdued them as slaves." out up he may teach us his of Zion shall go forth shall to the mountain the law. but over your one over Israel you shall not take dominion. There is no promise of a great an act day to come one day that Job must wait for in expectation. people of sons after you. the and all the nations shall flow to it. ways 15.

whereas this implies hope might also of or expectation.10 8 each touching clings" one to his brother. Even the can see that yhl reader not in Hebrew. "to or so I believe.'"9 Comments 1. men not reel at the sight of is so brutal3 as to rouse him Now. 17 "When he sion. that I should wait in expectations? What is my I should prolong my life? . or come before his double-folded jaw? 6 surrounded tight9 can open the doors6 of his face his teeth by terror! is the strength of the next. nor lance. He is king over all the sons of pride. 19 He Iron he put counts as straw. Slingstones turn to sound of the javelin. and terror dances before him. for he was made to dread. up by a breath between them. of some use to the reader It the be to consider how the root is used in Book Job: Job 6:11 What end that strength have I. shatter and are nor in confu 18 No sword that will reach can javelin. and not a his shields7. nor They spear. could.13 cast as a nether millstone.2 Do up. They Out clutch'2 each other and cannot at be parted. 9 Each closed8 seal. quaver. 20 No son of the bow can stubble him to flight. 12 From his cauldron. lie on him cast as metal and do not 16 His heart is cast hard as stone. the gods are in dread. him? 2 No would stand restitution?4 [all] one expectation' is an illusion. 11 fire escape.14 21 and clubs are rated as straw. and bronze as rotton wood. laughs to the 22 "His the mud15 underparts are jagged leaves shards. who is that one who give exact before Is not me? 3 Who confronts me and [demands that] I everything outer under the heavens his mine?5 4 "I Who Who pride will not be silent about him. fused all together." times. His his mouth comes a flaming from torch as sparks of a stream or like the cracking of dawn. rises up. wait. He sprawls himself out implacable on 23 and makes the pot17 deep will to seethe a like a cauldron. tohalto is from the much versed root root yhl (wait in expectation).40 Interpretation CHAPTER FORTY-ONE 1 "Thus. It too. eyes are 10 "Lights flash of his sneeze. stand. He makes the sea his be ointment16 24 and headed. 15 Festoons of flesh. 25 No without one of the dust shining wake till the abyss seems all hoaryhave dominion over him.18 26 He sees every towering thing. 5 7 But his can unveil his garment. nostrils there comes smoke as boiling 13 His breath in ignites the coals and flames come out of his mouth. 14 His strength resides his neck. word mean but along it a sense of dread. or exploits or the grace of his frame. is a near relative of the at hwl or hyl. which was discussed in carried the note to with Job 39:1.

27:1 On that punish the expectations: day. till they had finished speaking. the Ps. it might be wise to remind ourselves of Job's hopes Who will see as well: Job 6:8-9 grant to it that my request comes to light. Job 14:14 of If a man (gebher) dies. head of the Leviathan and gave it to the people of island Those food. on a with. 74:14 the You crushed the as slay the crocodile that is in the sea. and the Leviathan the crooked serpent: and Ps. The first has replaced the second. till they stood longer 2. That is to say. None the less I will defend my ways before Him. but there came only a murk. interplay between hwl and denying us the second. that it is by giving up the yhl and recognizing that the world beyond man and its denizens have a legitimate being for themselves. that we begin to see our own legitimate being as it is implied in the notion of the hwl. YaChaL. I have no higher expectations. falling silent to hear counsel. you play ladies? young Can with him like bird or tie him string for your yhl. 104:26 Leviathan whom you made They Job 40:29 serve You and You give them their a to play food in due time. insofar as it deals with our the world beyond man. will curse and those who are determined to lay open the Leviathan it. apart from their being for us. The Voice has introduced us to the then perhaps we can gain a deeper insight into the first while Since the relation to abandonment of expectation. I have waited in expectation for your while you searched words and listened for your Job 32:16 understanding I waited in and could no expectation reply. for something to say. need not imply the abandonment of hope QaWah. their in mouths opened wide as if to catch the I hoped for the good spring but there came evil. Men would hear me and wait in expectation. I rain. waited expectation for Job 32:11 light. loose my his hand and cut me off! . He the Lord with his sore and great and strong sword shall Leviathan the shall flying serpent. We have heard those Isa. Job 3:8 who despise the sea. If abandoning that the "expectation" means day will come the Leviathan will primarily abandoning the expectation be crushed in favor of the alternative account of the Leviathan: There go the ships. my Job 29:23 Job 30:26 the They waited for me in expectation as for the rain. that God hopes? Would that God were pleased to crush me. he come back to life again? All the days Job 29:21 my service I have waited in expectation for my release to come.The Book of Job Job 13:15 It may be that He will 41 slay will me. which deals with our relation to the world of man.

So. a rock dislodged from its torrents have worn the have You washed away the dust his face of of away and its the land. then." From it Hebrew So for "peace. and with the might of fact. and in which he for itself. You have stones trashed all mortal hope. But that knowledge rouse may admire." Neh. Then the within fifty-two days. 4:3 Even the jackals breast and suckle their young. but he and His body surrounds him pain. knew it. They with were in disgrace. has fallen The waters and crumbled away. away. Job has nonhuman. mangled never overpowered man. and spread 'Thou art my to the maggots. One of them reads: give the Lam. The comes the root of this word. where out my couch Father' and call out and then is my hope? 3." 4. and he has and sent him off. passed through that veil which separates the human from the of His journey had begun some time ago." as is not a very common and it only twice outside the Book of Job. But the forces pulling him back into the land of the Jackal had. Job had said: Job 30:21-22 You have turned brutal persecute me. spirit is eaten Job 17:13-15 If I must take the in darkness. like the in the wilderness. 6:15 the wall was finished (shlm) on the twenty-fifth day the month Elul." an is to see a world which man a world as a world can may first leam to recognize of man.42 Interpretation Job 14:18-22 A mountain place. The word. But to see that "[all] expec tation is illusion. Your hand You You hoist in the me up onto the wind and set me astride to be tossed about wreckage. to imply the attempt or desire to be or be come an actor within the realm beyond the human. He first felt it in the form fear: Job 30:29 I became a and so brother to the Jackal and friend to the ostrich. The "brutal" word seems. You have resigned. 'Mother* call out to the muck 'Sister' Pit to be my home. Back in Verse 21 of that same chapter. in already begun. means "to be whole or word complete. apart from the needs only lead one to say: "No one is so brutal as to him up. to mean "to pay [a word comes debt]": . occurs which I have translated "brutal. ostriches but the daughter of my people has become brutal. His his sons were was honored but he unaware. word 'akf'zar. shlm.

" debt. 21:36 Or if it is known that the ox has been accustomed to gore shall in the and the past. know him from the Here it is taken outside only. Job's openness as We can in his "open But Leviathan is "to finally closed to man." importance winnowing kind. winnowing is the prime anal ogy of cosmic justice." by all to his the scales. on me and casts me into the hands guilty ." oil rest. defend." insures of a of that there will be grass even note "where no man saw But its justice is the 6. of. crime goal of this kind of justice is to make those who have suffered whole To the extent that one must speak of punishment. God sets the wicked to close in men. in the however." 7. case. unlike Job. If. and I am not sure that be of much assistance either to the reader or to myself. He closes in on a man and Job 16:1 1 of nothing is ever reopened. 8. sell the live on the lift. then punishment for cosmic crimes can only be punished in terms of the harm man has caused to himself. does have kind He impenetrable be hurt skin the others." mine?" Cosmic justice is larger than and for the Leviathan is. Satan He cannot be disturbed by others. to begin by looking to see word sgr ("closed") is used rest of the text: Job 3:9-10 of May it not see the eyelid of dawn open. The again. meganim. If He should pass by and separate or close up. dead beast shall be his. The I can remainder of this chapter is clearly how the quite dense. it means that the spoke Leviathan. and what who can turn back? He tears down can never be rebuilt. mean normally In either of means "to shield. It might help.The Book of Job 2Kings 4:7 - 43 She and came and told the man of your God. "Is not everything under the heavens human justice. and pay debts and you and your sons can he said. it does not strictly make sense to "demand exact 5. one charged with a is punished for what harm he has caused others. It leaves always room restitution. he pay ox for ox. Therefore he cannot learn from others and so cannot learn to know himself. This is human justice as it is contained in the notion of shlm. then. from the root mgn. cannot by No one can touch him. however. and its owner has not kept it in. "Go. In that sense. In the embodied to Job 31:34 we door." meaning "to or "to fill in" what one has "lifted This understanding is fundamental to human justice: Exod." where the word a for debt is related to a word To pay off. for it closed not the doors Him Job 1 1:10 Job 12:14 my mother's belly but hid my eyes from toil. is to "make whole.

has. 12. For us it is ugly. dabhaq. "signet. Job 41:9 Job 41:15 one clings of Festoons and (dbq) to his brother." away from all other beings. the list is . it is to another thing: Job 38:38 and liquify the dust and cast it into congealed (dbq) clods? for the Leviathan it Each seems to be yet another. Job 19:20 Job 31:7 My bones stick (dbq) to If my step has wandered my skin and to my flesh. are But if they bound in fetters and trapped in cords of affliction. making it unknown and unintelligible to 11. The Leviathan's pride turns out to be Job's old foe narrow For Job it was the oppressive was feeling of walls For the Leviathan it "Seal. the Leviathan does Job's skin." first came to light when we saw that he had no "skin beneath his This was the vulnerability that let in pain and anguish. 9. Iqd: It is important to Job 5:13 Job 36:8 He traps the contorted ones see how very different this in their word looks to men: wise own craftiness as the advice of those dashes headlong. But it also left him open to feeling and then seeing a world beyond his world. But. lie on him cast as metal do not quaver. At best. tight itself." all others. Job has seen the Leviathan. also consider: Job 38:30 clutches to Water draws itself up. or a taint stuck (dbq) to my hand. but has the Leviathan seen Job? His closedness would seem to say No. pulling in and sky cutting For Job it was the beginning 10. ing What gave anything its being by mak it intelligible to another. while noticing that the Leviathan finds his strength in Job's strength lay in his willingness to stand in the open help being not. closed entranceway. as stone." sar. for the Leviathan. and the face of the deep Again. it restrains speech: Job 29:10 The voice of the nobles was hushed. become that which seals it hotam for Job. of murk and confusion. or constrictive: "stick. and their tongue stuck (dbq) to their palate. flesh. complete." his completion and perfection. shameful. fused (dbq) all together. ness. in the world beyond man.44 Interpretation One cannot up. off. "tight. from the way. my heart gone after my eyes. Job leaves himself openness open to what is most other. For the world beyond man.

The Book of Job
13. Not
Job 6:12



who once said:

Do I have flesh







made of

flesh is to be

able to



Job 19:22



you pursue me

like God, taking

satisfaction out of


Not to feel
Job 10:4




to understand pain;

Have You

eyes of


For Job, it is through the
notion of which


of pain that we come

to understand the

importance, by seeing


willing to

risk pain and

death for that

is important:

Job 13:14

what reason

do I take my flesh between my teeth


my life in

my hands?

flower 14.

The way his flesh lies makes it appear to be open to the other, but, like a carved in stone, the festoons of flesh cast like iron remain for ever, but

forever in itself.



be for him


it is for itself. Difference for him
His total
unawareness and

makes no

difference. "Slingstones turn to
to the world around


indifference he

him is


The lights






to see



by, by only him. are for themselves and not as are for us, to things as they they the grass which grew where no man was, Job was forced to quit the

to read

and yet we are arrested and can see

world of man


a world unstifled



need and

let to be itself. But in

that world only man, the stranger, through his weakness and otherness could

learn to let things be.


then could he return with a

fuller understanding



need. an old

15. Once


asked a

anything in itself apart from what bit absurd. Has mud anything better to do than to be

young Socrates if he thought mud was it is for us. The question would seem to be a


a mud


or a


or a

house? And

we all

stand upon the earth with never a thought of

asking its permission. Nonetheless, we can almost feel the jagged shards cutting gashes into the ground. In this imagery we see the great destruction to others implied in his
16. Or



Exod. 30:25




and you shall make of these a sacred as



the perfumer; a


anointing oil anointing oil it shall be.





ISam. 8:13 He bakers.

outsider shall


cut off

any like it or whoever from his people.





on an

take your daughters to be

perfumers and cooks and



Sol. 5:13


cheeks are

like beds

of spices,

yielding fragrance. His



lilies, distilling


first it burst




up the


behind the double door


out of

the womb

The sea,




tale the measureless realm of chaos and confusion,


always threatened to engulf

all, has become a simple utensil,


ment of

his innocent

18. The

word which

I have translated







word, and

in fact


in only

one other passage

in the

whole of

Biblical literature.

Gen. 9:2

the passage reads:



and dread of you shall rest on every animal of the earth, and bird of the air, on everything that creeps on the ground, and on every the fish of the sea; into your hand they are delivered.


But the Leviathan "was
and perhaps





without correction

Thus, Job 41:25


so, as a


Genesis 9:2. If the


understanding is to be of any ultimate relevance, man cannot be master of the visible universe. It is only in seeing a thing outside of himself as a being in itself, that man can begin to regard himself as a self.
sphere of

19. in



one other verse

exact meaning of this word is in the Bible. The context is:




It only


Job 28:7-9


eye of the

falcon has it

never caught sight of



have the

sons of pride ever trampled


The lion


bear it

no witness, mountains





his hand to the flint

and overturned



the root.

In Aramaic, the







in Ethiopian the


"to be


root comes

the word

In Arabic, the shhis, "a bulky

root means

"to be






man of






is disagreement among translators as to whether the Leviathan is or over men. The ambiguity may not be totally unintentional,
that such a

it is

not so clear

distinction is

the Leviathan himself. It


not even clear

of any concern whatsoever to he knows that he is king, though


indeed he surely is.



above and


all malice or

ambition, oblivious to all,

The Book of Job
rules all and



the mere weight of his

being. In him

we recognize our



see our



1 Then Job
that no


the LORD and said: 2 "I know that You



all and counsel



from You. 3 Who is this I had

one that


knowledge? I have

spoken though

not understood.

There is


beyond me, a world full of that I had never known. 4 Now listen and I will speak; I shall question you, and you will inform me. 5 I had hear;3 heard of You as ears can but now my eyes have seen You. 6 Wherefore I

have both

contempt and compassion









so, that


the LORD had spoken these words unto



the LORD said to Eliphaz the
against your two as





friends: for



not spoken of me the



is right,

has my


Job. 8 Therefore,
and offer

get yourselves seven


and seven

Job, my bear8 Job shall pray for you; for I will deal with you after your folly, in that you have
and go to servant servant

up for

yourselves a

burnt offering; and my his countenance in order not to
not spoken of me the



is right, as my servant Job 9 So Eliphas the Temanite



Bildad the





went and did according as the LORD commanded them, the LORD Job.9 bore up the countenance of 10 And the LORD restored the fortunes of Job when he had prayed for his



the LORD returned all that Job
all of


twice over.

11 Then his house

his brothers
with which



and all of

his friends

came over to







and showed





the evils

the LORD

had brought



one gave a of


and each a golden ring;

and the

LORD blessed the last days

his 13


even more

than He had its beginning. He had fourteen thousand sheep, six

thousand camels, one thousand head of cattle, and one thousand she




seven sons and three


14 The first he



name of


the second to be


and the third


15 In

the land there

could not

knew his

and their

found any woman more father gave them an inheritance alongside


than Job's


16 And Job lived

another one


years after

these events, and

sons and



sons, and


an old man contented with

theirs, four his days.


17 And



Comments 1 It is terribly
translate this word. Gener




one should

ally speaking it usually implies

evil or wicked



Job 21:27 Ps. 10:2

Oh, I know
devised In

what you are

thinking, the

machination you


against me.

arrogance the wicked


pursue the poor;

let them be



the schemes which

they have devised.
often means

In the Book


Proverbs, however, it



like "dis

Prov. 8:12


wisdom, dwell

in prudence,


I find knowledge




the other



it to describe God's




Jer. 30:24

The fierce

anger of

the LORD

will not




he has

executed and accomplished the you will understand this.





In the latter days


in question, yibhaser, only in the Bible:


in the



one other pas

Gen. 1 1 :6

all one and

And the LORD said, "Behold, they are one people, and they have language; and this is only the beginning of what they will do;




propose to







The verb, then,
sense one

would seem or

to preclude

finds in Proverbs

taking the in Jeremiah, since in

word mzmh either

in the

neither case

is anything
Perhaps Job


spoken of which one would want to prevent.

This leaves the first meaning, but that is

difficult to



that that too can


accepted as



it is known to be

without malice or

intent. beyond me,
a world

2. "There is

a world




literally, "[There



3. Literally, "I had heard of You by rumor of the cf. 28:22. 4. 'al ken as wenihamti 'al 'epher we'phar. This is clearly a critical contested passage. I also think that it has been much abused.



James translates: "Wherefore I
The Revised Standard does


myself, and repent





about the


except that




puts the word

"myself in

italics, indicating

that there

is nothing


sponding to it in the Hebrew text. Greenberg has "Therefore, I recant and re lent, being but dust and Greenberg is more in line with the original
punctuation which puts the major
as the


after the second verb rather than the




would require.


The Cambridge Bible translates: "Therefore I melt away; I repent in dust Their reasoning is somewhat complicated. The root m's had



for instance. I who am but dust ashes. however. 58:8. back to the everyday language of Dick and Jane. "I have comtempt for as 'eth or strange to let the 'al do for both." or is. "upon. normally as 'el. one more reason for believing tion. Job 30:19 It throws me into the mire and I become like dust and ashes. 18:27 the Abraham answered. one feels remorse." and 5. Job the homeless is which no man counts at home now. a common Biblical phrase in all its mortality.The Book of Job occurred meant -49 in Job 7:5: ooze. we have returned to Chapter One." where it "to It is found in Ps." one assumes ashes. "Dust meaning mankind ashes." 'al. and repentance." sorrow or Like the English word. have expected but it would not be so . there seems "to feel deep compassion. means "to despise" "reject. This return by an author who knows the names of Eliphaz and Bildad and Zophar is. by the way. that dust so clear 'al is exactly the word that one would expect to mean find following for. the word normally and so imply does guilt or self-recrimination. He is of at home in He a very large world in for more than a hill beans. together seem the fact that the It roots mss do mean "to melt. He is value. He also knows that that large woolly world has in it a kind of love and a kind of laughter which only he his fellows 6. Linguistically speaking." "My also skin has become hard and begins to ooze." but. The the root m 's fundamentally Again. as . . the inference which is automatic in Hebrew. if one feels sorrow guilt. also at home in a very each and and small world world in which each man is of infinite can be at home in only because he is at home in the other. feel sorrow or compassion for the suffering of anything like "on" does not. As far em' and together as the word 'em' they simply 'em' "I feel compassion one would is concerned. real feeling that God has when people offer Him sacrifices that have no to translate it as "recant." meaning to them. "Behold." and is. can establish in the world of the small." These passages. and that the linguistic and flight from back to the mundane was a integral part of the author's inten . far as I have been able to in English vernacular is by no means as they mean "while sitting tell. require as Greenberg does." wenihamti." to be behind their understanding of the verse. that the book was conceived of as a whole. Also see Gen. I have taken upon myself to speak to Lord. and mean or When King James trans on lates "on dust ashes.epher we'phar. The root nhm means understood in the text. "Let them be like the with snail which dissolves into and nms slime. of course. and would something like a "myself to be to be no basis for such an assumption. in itself. But to others for something that one has done.

yet his soul. sisters each one on a different with day. but that seeing took place in a foreign land in act. All of by the language ordinary everyday adult human speech. Gone is the vocabulary. Again there has been a switch middle in the texture section with of the language. but it is has been replaced not a simple return of to a fairytale world. never having eaten of together they lie in the dust. 11. living in a nutshell." other Biblical character to use the was phrase "brothers and with all the sense of equality that it implies.50 Interpretation 1. of Another dies in the bitterness goodness. and Joshua 2:13 . and save alive and mother. Job of the wide world is again Job the servant which of the LORD. Job's his hands his friends eyes could not have seen. "Has consumed not our enemy been destroyed. He who has seen the Leviathan will say a prayer for as they bring their bulls and their rams to be sacrificed. Remember Aaron. Can egg what white is tasteless be eaten without salt or does the slime of Job 13:28 Job 15:34 Job 18:13 and all have any taste? becomes worn out like have a rotten thing like a piece of clothing . will consume His be away. the tents of skin will bribery eaten are a consuming fire. 9. It might be worth mentioning that the only sisters. tortuous syntax of the long its obscure The that language is simple. Job 20:26 Job 21:25-26 He will be consumed by an unblown fire and all shall go ill with the remnant left in his tent. them over. and send word to their three to come and eat and drink them. our and all who belong to deliver lives from death. The nation now word 'aChaL that had so often meant death. but . 8. that the moths eaten. and Job His sons used to make feasts in their homes. destruction. Rahab: my father them. my brothers and sisters. . interact: devour even and resig holds together a world that can act and Job 5:5 All he has harvested the hungry shall taking out from Job 6:6 an under the thorns: and the thirsty shall go panting after their wealth. another eat their remains by fire?" then let me sow. 10. and the worms cover Job 22:20 Job 31:8 saying. that wonderful woman of the night. Job 1:4 be a world devoid of all meaningful human action. death's first born his members. . The world of out to seeing turned has returned.

strength in his Now. three thousand camels. here is Behemoth eats I made along with you. 33:19 Joshua 24:32 And from the The bones sons of Hamor. can lose its destructive Job 2: 1 1 Now when Job's three friends had heard came each of all the evils that had come upon him. How widow's could I from the poor or drain a with the Job 31:39 sharing it had grown with me for a father? fatherless. in sons of an the portion of ground which Jacob bought from the Hamor the father Shechem for of a hundred Qesitoth. His might is in the muscles of his belly. Bildad show Shuhite. they up claims that I have eaten its produce without payment and eye. Job 1:3 He head owned seven thousand sheep. 13. or even eat a crust of when bread alone. eating joyous unity. What was not possible before has now become actual. at the end of the book. Gen. The recognition of compassion that Job gained from beyond the human sphere has had its full effect within the human sphere. fodder just like the cattle. whom Job 40:15-16 He But look now. and Zophar the Naamatite. after character and become an act of simple Job's return. ten thousand of cattle.The Book of Job Job 31:12 Job 31:16-17 It would 51 be a fire consuming down to Abaddon. He richest man ('ish) in the East 15. when a mighty wind came in from the on wilderness and struck the four corners of the house. Shechem's father. he bought for land on which a hundred Qesitoth the of piece of he had pitched his tent. but look at the loins. We remember: Job 1:18-19 While he was yet talking. not snuffed out the life of its owners. Joseph at which the people of Israel brought up from of Egypt were buried Shechem. they the from his own place Eliphaz the Temanite. five hundred she asses and was the head of a very large was the estate. inheritance of the descendants 14. They him conferred and to with one another and planned to come together to console him compassion. uprooting withhold pleasures all that I have ever accomplished. "Your sons and your of daughters eating and drinking wine in the house their oldest brother. 12. It fell down . were another one came in and said. it became Joseph.

qesi'a. O desolate one. and wood and stones wood. of Job does not end with a deus ex machina or miracle or resur of death In recognizing the being of itself. means "antimony": for house IChron 29:2 So I have the gold the provided the of for the things of gold. sym bolic of feminine corruption: 2Kings 9:30 Jer. In ancient times it was ground into a powder. and she painted her head." is a fragrant bark of a tree that can be pow dered like Ps. this name? second word. 45:8 cinnamon and used in cooking. and marble. too.52 Interpretation the young people. the iron for the things iron. also called pukf1. Your your robes are all fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia. including the being his 16. Job himself becomes word yom. in English. 18. the very fact that them a certain being and hence a The pukh names are the clearly intended to be very beauti daughters are mentioned by name gives But what of certain nobility. and looked out of the window. what do you mean that you dress in scarlet. the silver of of my God. in the prophets. and of bronze for the things for the things bronze. antimony. They are dead. or all the things that a self. 4:30 When Jehu her eyes. came to Jezreel. keren happuli1: the first two ful. stones. And you. The Book rection." are. We remember to his friends: his his day. Then. of silver. and used pens of the by women as eye makeup. They consoled and showed upon him compassion for all the evils which the LORD had brought him. besides great quantities of onyx colored for setting. Jezebel heard of it. Job 3:1 Then. that you and adorned enlarge your eyes with paint? . "cassia." Nor have they been forgotten: Job 42:1 1 to Then all of his brothers and sisters and all of his friends him came over his house and supped with him. Job opened mouth and spurned 17. As such it became. and I alone have escaped to tell thee. so far for the things as I was able. From ivory palaces stringed instruments make you glad. that you deck yourself with ornaments of gold. "day. all sorts of precious stones. It is from the words It is a new Job.

because I ISam. and they were afraid to come near him. that the skin of skin of face shone. and such are the thousands of Manasseh. 33:17 ox. said. Then they blew the trumpet. 16:13 Then Samuel took the horn his oil. hence. and went to Ramah. and he veiled his power. and the Spirit of the LORD mightily upon David from that 1 Kings 1:39 day forward. I will send you Jesse the Bethlehemite. such are the ten thousands of Ephraim." means means so and together the more means "the Horn Mascara. "Long live King Solomon!" and all the people But. and his homs are the of a wild with he shall push the peoples. behold. They give him greater stature and a formidable look: adversaries of will ISam. and anointed him in the midst of came brothers. My mouth rejoice in thy . His bull has majesty. 2:1 Hannah horn also prayed and said. "How long him from will you grieve over over Saul. to begin at the beginning. firstling them the word means the horn of a living horns animal: Deut. rejected and being king to Israel? Fill your go. he and went and Moses would put the veil upon his face again." of but qeren much than A horn contained the oil used to anoint the said to kings of Israel: ISam. and There Zadok the anointed horn of oil from the Solomon. The homs of an animal are his strength and his defense. have Samuel. 34:30 the And when Aaron and all the people of Israel saw Moses. Moses' his face shone. and exalt the his And so it comes to mean all these things for a human being: heart exults in the LORD. The people of Israel saw the face of Moses." 53 us look at the first word. flashed from his hand. And Samuel priest took the rose up. all of them. against he thunder in heaven. But the root also means "to shine": Exod. until in to speak with him. 16:1 The LORD seeing I have horn with oil. rays Hab.The Book of Job Now let name "horn. It "horn." provided for myself a king of among his ISam. salvation. qeren. will give strength his king. The LORD to judge the horn ends of the of earth. my derides my enemies. for I sons. tent. 2:10 The them the LORD shall be broken will to pieces. he anointed. to the ends of the earth. the word itself can mean "a ray of light". "My exalted in the LORD. 3:4 His brightness there was like the light.

He has raised up a hom for his the people of people." not and to the wicked. and the IChron. and you shall take part of the of overlay it with bronze. "Do not lift For thou exalted. trumpets. 132:17 will bring these meanings together: There I will make a horn to sprout for David. my me from violence. because it eas and ily blends "the hom into the language along of with such other phrases as "hom oil" of my salvation": 2Sam. for Israel who are near to him. too. 15:28 So all up every Israel brought up the of man straight before him. When the although news came to for Joab had supported Adonijah he had not supported Absalom Joab fled to the tent of the LORD and caught hold of the horns of the altar. cymbals. LORD with ark of the covenant of the and shouting. I have for prepared a Ps. praise all his saints. And. 29:12 And you shall make horns for it blood on its four corners. 89:17 I say your to the horn. stronghold and my refuge. "Do glory boast. I have driven my horns into dust. 22:3 of My God. my savior. to the sound the hom. of course.54 Interpretation Ps. the phrase "hom mascara" of works well. Praise the LORD! As I once before had occasion to mention. it was the source of all kinds of music: Joshua 6:5 And you when they make a long blast with the ram's horn. 27:2 be Exod. art the of their strength. 148:14 lamp for my anointed. my rock. Often the Psalmist Ps. in whom I take refuge. and made loud music on harps and lyres. then city all the people shall shout with a great shout. the bull and put it upon the blood you shall horns 1 Kings 2:28 of the altar with your finger. Linguistically. and the wall of the people shall go will fall down flat. the hom played a central role in the place of worship: Exod." boastful. thou . by thy favor our horn is This is what Job had in I have the mind when he said: Job 16:15 sewed sackcloth over my skin. its horns shall of one piece with and shall it. as soon as hear the sound of the trumpet. Joab and the rest of the pour out at the base of the altar. 75:4 up Ps. my shield and the horn savest my salvation.

From the The subject first arises with respect beginning we are shown the difficulties involved: When he know that Egyptians me." "Lord. And Leah conceived and bore a son. As is the case in the dialogues of Plato. And when the princes of woman was Pharaoh into her. he opened her womb. for your younger and he said. and said to him. also complicated The Biblical The view of beauty since is and. 'This is his wife'. we shall have to consider the full list. they praised her to Pharaoh. to Sarai. 12:11 was about to enter you are a woman beautiful to Egypt. 29:31 gratitude each time she When the LORD but Rachel was saw that Leah was hated. Jacob preferred Rachel's beauty to Leah's soft eyes: Gen. saw Gen. cluded however. "I the will see you. he said to Sarai his behold. and his house because of Sarai. "I will serve you seven years daughter Rachel. in have to be Song its of Songs. and when . and she . so as to not mislead ourselves. Gen. We have not. there is also good. Although it is wilt thou slay an innocent people? clear that as a young man. 19. the and the name of the younger was name of the older was eyes were Leah. with great plagues Pharaoh wife. will they will say. a prima facie assumption that the beautiful is that That statement is by no means intended to imply Plato was unaware of the problematic character of that assumption: only and think of such people as Meno Alcibiades. by conjoining the Its bare word queren ("hom") to the pukh in such a natural and ordinary way. for she is Now Abimelech had not approached her. the author has silently but mention force to fully robbed the word of its sting. has a child: Leah knows only Gen. man's wife. Rachel." And to came Abimelech in dream by night. you are a a dead man. so he said. Jacob loved Rachel. And the But the LORD afflicted taken Pharaoh's house." But it is not clear what the reader is to think. barren. her beauty almost led to the death of an innocent. because of the woman whom you have taken. though perhaps somewhat naive man. 29:16 Now Laban had two daughters. Abram's And ultimately. "Behold. then they kill but they let you live.The Book of Job To word 55 put the argument simply. But God sister. Leah's soft. "She is my Gerar sent and took Sarah. 20:2 And Abraham Abimelech said of king a of Sarah his wife. it is a subject in itself which would understood on own terms. is no longer sufficient conjure up a degrading image of womankind. wife. but Rachel was beautiful and lovely.

30:6 When Rachel sister. "Let not my lord be angry that I cannot rise before you. he has given me this son also". for another And her soul was departing his (for name died). When she finally does have another: a son of her own. and take know that Rachel had stolen them. but did not find the household gods. In the presence of our kinsmen not Now Jacob did I have that is yours. but his father buried Benjamin. But Rachel always thinks in terms of battle and victory: Gen. so she called his name Naphtali. and said. "With mighty wrestlings I have wrestled with my sister." She my affliction. and I die!" shall Then Rachel said. Laban felt . in her hard labor. 31:32 it. she envied or her and she said to Jacob. "May the LORD add to son!" Her demand was met. (that and she was on the way to Ephrath is. but did not find them. and two maidservants." "Any one with whom you find your gods shall not live. "Because the LORD has heard that I his name am hated. and she called Simon. "Because the LORD has looked me. the have son. Bethlehem). 30:1 Gen. 30:24 and she called me another his name Joseph. Rachel travailed." them. but with a demand for Gen. And she her father. for the way of women is upon So he searched. said to me.' and she had hard labor. and entered Rachel's.56 Interpretation called upon his name Reuben. And he went out of Leah's tent. her Nor is it clear what we are to think of charm: Gen. when she was now you will she and when they were still some distance from Ephrath. but at a very heavy price: Gen. she reacts not with gratitude. for she said. and have prevailed". Now Rachel had taken the household gods and put them in the camel's saddle. Then Rachel said. "Give children. voice and given me a has also heard my son". So Rachel died. therefore she called his name Dan. saw that she bore Jacob me no children. 35:16 Then they journeyed from Bethel. So Laban point out what went into Jacob's tent. surely now my husband will love conceived again and bore a son. "Fear called not. And midwife said to as her. and sat upon all about the tent. saying. she called his name Benoni. and into the tent of the not find them. but he did into Leah's tent. "God has judged me.

The Book of Job But perhaps most 57 soft- telling of all is the ultimate superiority of Leah's spoken son Judah over that master magician. Nonetheless. 35:33 You shall not thus pollute the land in and no expiation shed which you live. totally forget his There relation was also to Bath Shibah. him. was Joseph himself beautiful. Joseph. blood that is by the blood of who shed There is a law: and see among the captives a beautiful woman. anoint and was ruddy. . they first seven fat cows. and saw and him. Deut. and not to allow oneself to fall under the sway of that one cannot is to miss a great deal of the Bible. for he He charm was but ruddy beautiful in was charming. And the LORD said. and up the there came up out of fed in the reed grass. "Arise. 16:12 And he sent. "Lie with master's me. 17:42 And the Philistine looked. 39:6 So he left no concern he had in Joseph's charge. for when this is ISam. but all that again it led to grave problems. which and having him he had was for anything but the food he ate. but the ill-behaved. And after a time his wife cast her eyes upon Joseph. 21:11 you have but it must be read in the light of Cozbi." ISam. 25:3 Now the name of the man was woman was of good Nabal. David was beautiful: brought him in. Now he he. for blood be made pollutes the land. a youth. Now Joseph handsome (beautiful) and good-looking. The man was churlish and understanding and beautiful. whom we saw at work in the note to Job 6:11. and desire for her and would take her for yourself as wife. the . Gen. he disdained appearance. and had and was handsome. he was a Calebite." Then come the pointless cows: Gen. for it. the [beautification] in it. beautiful eyes. Abigail: ISam. and said. Nile seven cows beautiful and And the thin and gaunt cows ate On the other hand beauty as a fictional goal is at times implicitly praised: Num. except can for him the land. 41:2 and fat. and the name of his wife Abigail. . . behold. David.

2Sam. and when the king came to see him. my than she. Joab's armor-bearers. and she was a beautiful woman. when was heavy meet on him." hand. every And when he the his head (for at the end of cut year he the used to cut of it. and after a time Amnon. whose name So Tamar. and brought her to the maiden was king. two chanced to and upon hundred the shekels by the king's And Absalom was servants of David. Amnon lay down." of her. though I do not its importance: 2Sam. and lay Her brother was not so wonderful. loved her. The very beautiful. On the other Joab. born to Absalom three sons. "Pray let my sister Tamar come and Now was make a couple of cakes But and said when she in my sight. lie with her." treacherously against his life (and there is nothing hidden from Joab said. but her beauty caused her disaster: 2Sam. David's son. and being stronger to me. and killed him. "I king). he weighed weight. and told hanging in an oak. with listen to her. while the mule that was under him went on. and the mule went under the thick caught branches was of a great oak. but king knew her . oak. then you yourself would have stood not waste time like this you. David's son. crown of cut there was no blemish in him. . if I had dealt the will aloof. "Behold. But he would not he forced her. alive and thrust them into the heart Absalom. nurse and ministered to him. and found Abishag the Shunammite. one daughter whose Next came poor Abishag: 1 Kings 1:3 of So they sought for a beautiful maiden throughout all the territory Israel. while he was still in the surrounded And ten young men. her. Absalom and struck him. 13:1 Absalom. his head and fast in the oak. he took hold sister. he it). and pretended to be ill.58 Interpretation Tamar was a wonderful person. 14:25 Now in all Israel there was no one so much to be praised for his his hair it of beauty head as Absalom. but beauty did him in as well: 2Sam. I saw Absalom hand. 14:27 There were name was Tamar. had a beautiful sister. his foot to the . For the understand sake of completeness I shall add the rest of the story. from the sole of . Absalom he riding his mule. that I may eat from her brought them near him to eat. "Come." with And he took three darts in his of hand. and left hanging between heaven earth. hair his head. Amnon said to the king. the and she became the king's not. 18:10 And a certain man saw it.

when she has done vile . LORD is to be beauty is vain. Esther's beauty saved her people. Eccles. a girding of sackcloth. and He had brought up Hadassah. 3:11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. and there is little reason to believe she deserved her fate: Esther 1:11 to bring Queen Vashti before the king with her royal crown. as and when her father and her mother died. and instead of a rich robe. her eyelashes. 6:25 far north. and instead Isa. yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. but it is The not clear what rest speak one kind way of a person she or the other has become by the end of the book. Esther 2:7 uncle. 11:15 What right has my beloved in my house. Your eyes will see the king in his beauty. Jer. 10:3 lovers despise you. in let her Prov. Do not desire her beauty in your heart. for themselves: is Ps.The Book of Job Vashti's 59 beauty did not help her. Mordecai adopted her his own daughter. baldness. they will behold a land rope. grace you poured upon your lips. 4:30 hair. the city of the great King. for fair to behold. Ps. therefore God has blessed for ever. 3:24 Instead girdle. that is Esther. that you what do you mean that you dress in Your beautify yourself with ornaments of gold. 48:2 the beautiful in elevation. it it and worked with an axe with silver and by the hands of a craftsman. of perfume Isa. in she was order to show the peoples and the princes her beauty. 45:2 You are the most beautiful of the sons of men. also he has put eternity into man's mind. and and do not capture you with Prov. for of a this is his lot. is the joy of all the earth. the maiden was beautiful lovely. O desolate one. a there will be rottenness. they fasten it with hammer and nails cannot move. Eccles. instead of beauty. that you enlarge your eyes with paint? In vain you beautify yourself. A tree from the forest is cut down. and instead of well-set that stretches afar. And you. and what I have seen to be good and to be beautiful is to eat drink and find enjoyment of in all the toil with which one toils which under the sun the few days his life God has given him. 5:18 Behold. for the customs of the peoples are false. the daughter of his for she had neither father nor mother. but a woman who fears the praised. 33:17 Jer. scarlet. Jer. Men beautify so that gold. they seek your life. shame. Mount Zion. 31:30 Charm is deceitful.

and lavished your harlotries your on any passer-by at the head of every street you yourself built lofty place and prostituted your beauty. You to regal estate. 27:4 any passer-by. full of wisdom and perfect in beauty till . Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: Because it and set its top among the clouds. they hiss and wag their heads Ezek." I Ezek. . I you corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor. he shall surely deal with it as its wickedness deserves. and its branches will be consumed. and say to him. "Is beauty." Ezek. of your your renown exceedingly beautiful. they shall devour and . your builders beauty. but they will not do it. and multiplying your Your borders are in the heart of the seas. for they hear young and men shall say. 33:32 And. were blameless in your ways from the day you were created. they perfect your beauty. Son of man. raise a lamentation over the king of Tyre. Thus says the Lord GOD: "You were the signet of perfection. day the beautiful of virgins and the The LORD hosts will protect them. in the length of its branches. and its heart was its height. I will give it into the hand of a mighty one of the nations.60 Interpretation deeds? Can vows and sacrificial flesh avert your doom? Can tree. and went forth among the nations you because beauty. renown. and were in your towers. towered proud of Ezek. you. offering made harlotry. 16:13 Thus at the daughter was called the perfection of you were made Jerusalem. that were in the garden of God. high Eden envied it. 2:15 with goodly fruit". And silk. "But trusted in beauty. 28:15 You their shields upon your walls round about. I made it beautiful in the mass and all the trees of its branches. faint for Amos 8:13 Zech. . lo. and your cloth. for it upon was perfect through the splendor which I had bestowed your you. but with the roar of a great tempest he fire to it. The cedars in the garden of God trees could not rival were as it. to feast their eyes on It was its roots went beautiful in its greatness. the joy of all of with gold and this the city which earth?" the beautiful and silver. "A green olive beautiful will set Lam. you ate raiment was of fine linen. Your heart was proud because of your beauty. for down to abundant waters. made they hung Ezek. and played the harlot because of your . and grew embroidered fine flour came and honey and oil. 31:7 exposed you before kings. iniquity was found in you. 9:15 that thirst. to perfect your The men of men of Arvad Gamad and Helech were upon your walls round about. the plane garden of of nothing compared with its branches. beautiful you you are to them like one who sings love songs with a what voice and plays well on an instrument. no tree in the God was like it in beauty. cast you to the ground. All who pass along the way clap their hands at you. nor the fir trees equal its boughs. I have cast it out. says the Lord GOD. . you then exult? The LORD once called you.

given what he had seen in the Tempest: case of Num. so cannot convey the same sense of equality that one feels strongly in the verse Job 42:15b and their father gave them an inheritance alongside their brothers. from the families were: Manasseh the Joseph. 26:33 Now Zelophehad the and the names of the son of oc Hepher had of no sons. son of Hoglah. and new wine the maidens. Had there been a son. 27:5 Moses brought their before the LORD. were but daughters: daughters Tirzah. you shall give them . The text continues: Num. Noah. Perhaps the best way of understanding the significance of what has curred is to compare it to the case of the daughters of Zelophehad: Num. but only a dowry. Hoglah.The Book of Job tread and 61 down the slingers. Milcah. Zelophehad Mahlah. 27:1 Then drew son of and near the son of son of daughters of Zelophehad the Hepher. 27:4a Why family. "The daughters Zelophelad right. Thus. the next phrase Num. and he had no sons. And are the LORD said to Moses. should the name of our father be taken away from his The main argument here concerns the preservation of the name of the sake of father. Machir. he those who gathered of among the company of themselves together against the LORD in the was not own company Korah. Noah. a and they shall drink their blood like wine. and Tirzah. Our father died in the wilderness. And they stood before Moses. whereas in the Book of Job the inheritance is purely for the the daugh ters. 27:4b Give to us a possession alongside our father's brothers. On that of day the LORD their for they are the flock his people. Milcah. of Gilead. but died for his sin. how good and how fair it men they shall shine on his land. It should also be noted that it was Job's own decision to change his will. drenched like the God will save them crown shall the altar. corners of be full like bowl. young be! Grain shall make the flourish. The names of his daughters Mahlah. the daughters have received an inheritance. 20. for like the jewels of a Yea. at the door of the tent of meeting. and before the leaders and all the congregation. tance only would not The first thing to note is that the daughters of Zelophehad received an inheri because their father had no son. and before Eleazar the priest. son of Manasseh. Num. saying.

daughters of Zelophehad. then will inheritance be added to the inheritance of the tribe to which the they belong. so that of wife to one of the of family of the tribe of the people of Israel may possess the inheritance every one his fathers. son of Joseph. for Mahlah. tribe.62 Interpretation possession of an the inheritance of their inheritance among their father's brothers and cause father to pass to them. "The tribe of the sons Joseph is right. and of LORD to give the inheritance my lord was commanded by the Zelophehad our brother to his of the people of daughters. then you shall cause no his inheritance to you shall give pass to his daughter. the tribe and their inheritance will be taken from inheritance Israel of fathers. saying. These LORD the commandments and the ordinances which the commanded by Moses at to the people of Israel in the plains of Moab by the Jordan Jericho. the inheritance of the people of Israel shall not be transferred from one for every one of the people of Israel shall cleave to inheritance of the tribe of his possesses an inheritance in any tribe fathers. for each of the people of shall cleave to its own inheritance. "The LORD commanded my lord to the land for inheritance by lot to the people of Israel. Although the genuine concern words "Let them marry welfare of whom they think best" clearly own show for the the women. it inheritance. so and added to the inheritance of the tribe to they belong. Milcah. And if he has daughter. and has no son. then his inheritance to his brothers. And their when will be taken away from the lot of our the jubilee of the people of Israel comes. The only. came near son of Manasseh. houses houses of and spoke before Moses and before the leaders. 'Let within them marry whom they think best." of our And Moses commanded the people of according to the word of the LORD. however. And you shall say to the a man people of Israel. they said. Tirzah. The heads of the fathers' there was a further complication: Num. tribe to another. were married to sons of their father's are brothers. But if they are married to any of the sons of the other tribes Israel then their inheritance will be taken from the inheritance which of our fathers. 36:1 houses of of the families of the of the sons of fathers' Gilead the the sons Machir. tribal the women inheritance is paramount. In the case of Zelophehad. Hoglah.' " The daughters Zelophehad did as the LORD commanded the Moses. the heads fathers' of the of the people of give Israel. and the Husbands are immediately out to found for from their dowry. This is what the LORD commands concerning the daughters of of Zelophehad. they shall marry the family of the tribe of their father. And every daughter who of the people of Israel shall be her father. So no of inheritance the tribes shall be transferred from Israel of one tribe to another. inheritance turns be little more than a grand . 'If dies. and Noah.

. the way to go out on the hunt. and it is the children who must learn them. Human sociality way to plant men work together and it requires means nothing more than that by day in the evening they talk. This led to a shift in Job's standing of and sensitivity to beauty. there would be no bread. The inheritance is outright and absolute. be and of the ways. ways must be taught they must be learned. They be taught. "just" by the For Job." Without these would must be no life. and hence to ultimately questions concerning those accounts of "the first The need things. Without whole. however. But men are such that the stories that teach these ways cannot be shared unless they touch upon "the first a things" and tell of a world which holds all of our ways together. nothing is said dowries. by the fathers and some by the mothers. men are empty and life is without taste. The needs of man may better be served being open to the excellence of things as they grow of themselves than by by seeing them as being directed towards those needs. of his daughters." clashing for human One said while friendship. A small change in a last will and testament was the result. to the emergence of the nurturing and swaddling God as distin guished from the making and constructing God. that that Job has established the right of women to own and hold a property.The Book of Job Job's daughters. This insight. the other cried beginning The was a need "unjust. led. as we have seen. Could this be world part of a legacy that Job has brought back from Job to very large and to a very small world? was prepared The way by the names that gave the slight shift the author gave to our understanding of worlds. in turn. Of what do they speak? Of the com. there would no way to live as "one of com. for clarity that came about when his world began to fall asunder led Job to the need for autonomous understanding. the way to bake bread. the notion that things had their own selves apart seal upon them and were what recognition they were in them under from human need. and a need of clarity. beauty. there and us. So far In the case of means 63 or about husbands as I can see. the and all way to These some bury the dead. the two refused to mesh." Out of the whirl of the Tempest came the notion of the signets.


Drama, Narrative,
Plato's Charmides
Andrew Reece
Earlham College


Socratic Eros in

Plato's Charmides is
reader multiple

an evocative and



dialogue, offering
of possible




consideration and a



pretative approaches.

Three formal factors





corresponding points of entry into the work. First, the Charmides is aporetic, definitional dialogue, a dramatized discussion in which Socrates


his interlocutors
term, in this


but fail to formulate


satisfactory definition
posed at

of a



case sophrosyne

or "self-


By leaving

the question "What is



unanswered at

the end of the text, Plato encourages us to review the proposed

definitions (as Socrates

does, 175a-c)


to scrutinize the processes of argu


which the

investigation has derailed in


the Charmides


a narrated

dialogue, featuring Socrates


as a participant

in the discus
on the next


but In

also as a reporter of

the proceedings to

an unnamed



casting his dialogue Plato



the opportunity to as

sume the role of

and to evaluate










the obvious care Plato takes to give the dialogue a

dramatic setting demands that we pay close attention to details of characterization, locale, and time. Most studies of the Charmides have focused

the definitions of

sophrosyne presented within

the text and the complex and

175a). I


of the concept of a approach





here to

the dialogue the


the second and third routes,

responding to
cratic eros.


narrative and


dramatic frame, in



consider a theme not

usually discussed

with reference to

Charmides, So
Socrates tell the

Plato story

prefaces the elenctic core of the


by having

his introduction to Charmides, Socrates


story that


conspicuous elements of and at

an erotic encounter.

says that when




Critias the

before, he had just


back from battle


stamping into the wrestling school (palaistra) of Taureas and met several of his acquaintances, to whom he gave a report of the fighting. After spending an
wandered undetermined time on this

and was




able return to


in Athens. He

subject, he turned the


toward the latest

happenings in the
interpretation, Fall


community, asking

whether there were


1998, Vol. 26, No. 1


men who



proven themselves exceptional


their wisdom or



(153a-d). It is

breath both

"what's going

noting that Socrates (peri on in








ta nun) and about the physical attractiveness of the youths.
anticipated this

Plato has



of themes



males would

setting the Charmides in a be stimulated both physically and intel


lectually by
Lysis, in

one another's presence.


are reminded of the


of the





Ctesippus try to entice Socrates into a new telling him that they and "a great many other young men good (203b).2 wile away their time there in discussion Already our




established a

link between eros, the desire for beauty,

and philoso

phy, the desire for wisdom, though the nature of that link is not




had he

asked about the

young men,
all of



of them

began to fill the room,


Socrates, than a Critias told him, were the
that this cousin

lovers (erastai)



Charmides (154a). We learn
young immediate discomfiture


common consent the soon


in his

age group. of all




entered, to the

present, in

cluding Socrates,
this youth:

who confides

to his anonymous


his impression

My friend,


am no good at measuring.






ruler when me.


comes to

beautiful young men. Nearly all men at that Charmides seemed just then remarkably tall

age seem

beautiful to

But still,







effect on all the men

present, from the
were a

to the oldest, all of whom gazed upon

him "as if he



154c). Plato's

use of words and

images here is


What I have
a white

translated as "I am


simply a blank Atechnos leuke stathme
regard to.
. .


. .




eimi pros

was colloquial

for "I

make no extended make

distinctions in


the expression

derived this

meaning from the fact that a line coated with visible measuring marks on limestone or marble,

white chalk could not


it is

an appropriate

image here

Socrates is


at a man who seems to


an agalma,

perhaps of stone.


then says that

his friend


who was also

present, remarked upon
was so


and added that his body singularly fine (pankalos) that it could easily cause one to forget the young man's face altogether (154d). There was, then, something unreal about attractiveness. He was like a sculpted image, with a superhuman

handsome face


whose admirers

temporarily forgot
and a

ual with a

distinctive face



that they were looking at an individ distinctive identity. The very magnitude of this distinguishing feature to his other admirers, but the

Drama, Narrative,
metrically inept


Eros in Plato 's Charmides



even while

in the him.

that beautiful youths

admitting his wonderment, reminds his qua beautiful now seem much

the same to



not convinced that

needed to see




he had


assurance that


possessed, besides his specifically, "a
soul was



stimulating qualities, "one other little (154d-e).4 When Critias had answered that



kalos kai agathos, Socrates suggested by means of a discussion. In order to


that part of the young man




guardian, to

any impression of unseemliness, Charmides over. By making this



politesse older man

explicit, Plato


heightens the





a palaistra

suspected of sexual motives often

(and it



paidagogoi attend

their sons

approaching a youth could easily be partly for this reason that fathers would in such settings, to shield the boys from

possible seduction.

See Symp. 183c-d, Lys. 223a; Dover 1978, pp. 82-83.). By soul, telling Critias just before that he was interested above all in Socrates turned the banter of the older men away from their carnal appreciation
of the youth.

At the



by having



up the issue Socrates

of wres

tling-school protocol,



reader aware

that this meeting does at

least have the

appearance of a seductive approach. enough




terms that


could collaborate




to draw

for headaches, the malady about which Charmides had recently been complaining. It may be that Critias suggested this scheme because it seemed to him a less erotically
Charmides to them.



that Socrates knew a




than a removal of the garments



soul and


McAvoy 1996,




In any event, it worked,




his narrative, telling his among the

proach caused a great ruckus man


pushing his

neighbor aside opted

ap sitting in the palaistra, with every room on the bench for Charmides next



to himself. He eventually

to sit between Socrates and




sudden nearness threw

Socrates into


At this point, my friend, I lost my bearings (eporoun), and my previous confidence in my ability to speak with him easily was knocked out of me. When Critias told him that I
was the one who

knew the cure, he looked


right in the

eyes with an

indescribable look

and was on the verge of


me a question.

Everyone in the

palaistra gathered round us



circle, and it was right at that moment, my noble
cloak. caught


that I saw what was

inside his

fire, I

was no


myself, and I came to regard Cydias as the

wisest counselor with respect

to matters



of a

beautiful boy, he fawn before

gave the a


advice to someone:


care not to go as a




up like

a piece of

our Socrates' for Plato's treatment importance I wish of Socratic eros to review what we have learned with in this dialogue. it is easy ability to overcome his immediate lust for Char mides introduces one possible definition of the term dramatically. not mutu Pit. with some effort to answer that I did.68 I Interpretation thought that I myself cure had been captured by a beast like that. 221d). Still. but more particularly we have notion geous coexisting and here a suggestion an augmented coura of Socratic sophrosyne. the setting of this well dialogue some immediately following of the battle at Potidaea may that Socrates displayed have reminded Plato's and original readers exceptional courage in that battle. After tality seek marriage and family. We might see from Plato of the unity of virtue. in in the which self-control and exhibits itself in can actions. "oddness. at Symp. One question is help the the elenchus of the of fact that Socrates apparently possesses the virtue? The first Charmides. and perhaps it is surprising that we should find courage and sophrosyne complementing one another in his character. (155d-e) The Charmides is which is all we only source for this Cydias fragment (Page 1962. and it can of that drives a consideration of course. citation of Cydias is significant have from the poet. these virtues were often considered a rare combination. I managed when he asked me if I knew the for his headache. 97). if ally exclusive (North 1966." p. Diotima explains that while those who want to gain a kind of physical immor eros ing theme in the Charmides. The second leads us back into Socratic eros. Charmides. in which Alcibiades praises Socrates sophrosyne both for and for (219d-220c). 714). particularly restraint indulgence.5 Furthermore. 507a-c. entered the palaistra to his actual meeting Sophrosyne. Although Plato makes a connection between courage and sophrosyne in other dialogues (Grg. those who are more inclined to leave an intel- . an elenctic investigation begun. But Socrates is a rare creature (Alcibiades not alto remarks on gether his atopia. Diotima's lecture to Socrates in the Symposium is. and another is implicit: What conse for our understanding of sophrosyne and of this dialogue follow from question meaning of sophrosyne has not yet Plato to frame the upcoming discussion two questions for us rather than one. one of Plato's most enhance our understand she has explained to Socrates that is ultimately a longing for immortality through procreation (201c-208e). has ual not yet the topic of the discussion that takes up most of the mentioned. important texts on the theme of eros. 306b). from sex been Since self-control. In the Laches Socrates context of Laches agree that one speak easily Though of courage resisting temptation and of the indulgence (191d). audience familiar courage with it certainly springs to the mind of a later the Symposium. in these small dramatic hints such a explicit: quences way that it poses What is sophrosyne? (159a). was a enough to see that Socrates' typical understanding of the word's meaning. but before elaborating its so far from the time Socrates Charmides.

Narrative. but generally speaking he Socrates' beauty of all men (154b-c).Drama. and good. at we observe that Plato has indicated to us through met setting and action that when Socrates his friends in the be He was. palaistra he had sophrosyne in his soul. Therefore he attracted to beget offspring with beautiful bodies for his procreative intentions." he says. try to teach the other. despite body. lectual or spiritual and Eros in Plato 's Charmides 69 legacy hope lover to produce who wisdom (phronesis) and excellence (arete) (208e-209a). the lover will prefer a combination of these qualities. then he is a man and old he will desire both man impregnate father be a another and to give will go out birth himself. the spiritual a man looks for find a suitable wife to bear his goes out to a good match. to quotation of return Cydias. have we If the Socrates of the Charmides is a lover like that Diotima even should Charmides have turned out to be an ideal soul mate (the would passed term is hackneyed but strangely appropriate here). he about what sort of a man a good man will activities will pursue. eternal rates beauty (Symp. Soc men met more or (as the blank ruler) confesses to his friend that he finds all young less equal in beauty. and what (209a-c) sorts of Returning the to the Charmides. like He this be very much drawn to this combination. someone who is both kotos and. In he will be well-supplied with words about (arete). just as a fawn . he implies that either at the moment he shortly "Charmides or Charmides universal. face. Socrates felt that he needed to speak with Charmides face to rosyne. and gifted soul. least if self-control might presence. at least potentially. Since love loves of wisdom both far" beauty are and wisdom (204b). hoping to find young men who could were both kalos and wise. inward say. Socrates beyond his infatuation with the young man's individual beauty and begun his when ascent toward universal. who had warned the lover that would one could be overtaken and consumed by a beautiful boy. pregnant If this is the case. Indeed. dikaios and sophron: If anyone should even be pregnant in his of soul with these virtues when [dikaiosyne and sophrosyne] enough from the time to his youth. he tual lover when he went out merely acting like Diotima's spiri to the palaistra. For the second. was considered the external we might manifestation of that virtue's with sophrosyne. is. thereafter seemed he had already started the movement to the just then (tote) to be remarkably tall and beauti appreciates the ful to young We me. know that Critias' assurance that his cousin's soul was beautiful. rather than ugly ones. and and since the greatest kinds "by justice (dikaiosyne) sophrosyne. like his describes. he the company goodness of a person and will if he should also come upon a beautiful. who be taught impregnated with soph It became quickly obvious that Charmides met the first qualification. certainly will he would never anything ugly. 210a-212a). Like children. distinguished. Surely he too [like the hoping to child] to find some specimen of beauty with whom to reproduce.

In both cases. hunting (Dover. an pp. passion and causes consider the significance of Cydias' The second striking point about the passage not is that turn a disconcerting. stretches the Charmides text enough For example.70 be Interpretation reduced to a chunk of meat by a lion. in singing. Socrates. First. For of example. Socrates' sexual arousal here leads him to a new awareness of his ceptibility to advice. Halperin 1985. potentially embarrassing (if opportunity for detached introspection indicates that shown in his control of his desire. consists in part in his intellectual Socrates' ability to unpleasant) event into an sophrosyne. p. the perception of their own lack knowledge. 1978. with trust in my strength.) his first speech Concluding motives of in the Phaedrus. Jowett's translation to make it approximate a more conven tional arrangement: . there c-d: seems to be a probable sexual connotation to Theognis 1278 A a lion. him to finally renewed reflection. fond of lambs. inversion the expected im age. Sim sus ilarly. The usual formulation of prey lighting upon the erastes the part the metaphor comparing an erotic pursuit to a beast its quarry.6 Third. 58. but did not drink its blood. but it seems surprising that Socrates should choose (or perhaps construe) a version of the predator-prey image in which the lover (erastes) figures as the lion. 81-91. here appetite cite Socrates' having greater of this line urgency than his Cydias Plato appropriates sexual appetite. has not always been recognized as such. of citation of the line from Cydias. right out from under hind. "As which he denounces the selfish lovers boys" under the spell of eros. with who had been observing the behavior of amusement. does indeed give of the hunter and the eromenos the part of the hunted. Socrates' (241d). just so do lovers love 165). This physiological loss in which the dialogue concludes. 241e). Socrates begins to launch into epic (as wolves are he admits he has done.7 as the fawn and the object of figures We might expect that the image his desire (the eromenos) would function the other way around. of which three come immediately to mind. (Cited as an image for erotic capture by Dover 1978. reveals to his confidant that the actually foreshadows the sent Charmides' swarm of lovers detached sudden proximity of the youth of composure him reeling into elenctic aporia aporia. This is a remarkable passage for several reasons. by having Socrates for a metaphor erotic pursuit that would have been familiar to his readers. I caught a fawn in my claws. Such metaphors are similar to the common compari game son of sexual pursuit to p. The bewilderment greater engendered by the Socratic elenchus ideally spurs the of interlocutors to and self-awareness. the aporia has a beneficial element. or as a hunter tracking game.

and I think the one that most simply accommodates the text. and slyly Charmides have failed in his suggests that the pursued will become the When Socrates. a lover might approach his beloved." you resist me Socrates answers. p. catch. Another reading. respectively. Thus there to me to be use of at least two more likely readings. 90. so that the lion in the poem stands for carnal desire. Socrates to replies in kind then. pursue. not for an individual whose beauty incites it. "don't (176a-d). a phenomenon passive eromenos of a sexual in the nominally advances relationship not only enjoys his lover's but even reciprocates. also reads the text in this way). to speak. "So Charmides." he most likely means Charmides became. and to imagine Socrates as the erastes and Charmides as the eromenos. lion. only if a with the power to momentarily. in speaking of a 71 well Cydias understood the nature of warns someone "not to bring the fawn in sight of the lion to be overcome by him. in which Charmides. who. while that he found himself in the role of the fawn If Socrates' we understand quotation of Plato is here whom foreshadowing the end of the Socrates had first approached as Cydias in this sense. If Charmides' either. this inverted image is to suppose that One way of understanding he means he has been snared by his lust for Charmides. when.Drama. p. He then realizes the version we can still as In this imagine Socrates the saliency would-be of the advice given of the and by Cydias. he must mean us to go along with the game. pursuer. Charmides thereafter spend every day together in will resort discussion. interprets the inversion his encounter as a simple rever sal of roles. we will be inclined to expect the metaphor of the lion and fawn to felt refer to Socrates and Charmides." realization of his desire to be Socrates. I thought how fair youth. Since Plato has seem contrived to make between Socrates handsome youth and and Charmides striking up so very much like a lover looking over a a conversation with him. "I myself to have been captured by a beast like that." no one will be able to resist him. or . Narrative. also interprets the quotation in this sense). 92. he devoured appetite. Critias and and plotting that if Charmides is really intent says you" force to make Socrates submit playfully say that they to their will. But what Cydias had advised the lover lion" fair youth was actually "take me care not to go as a fawn before a be devoured: eulabeisthai katenanta leontos seem Socrates' nebron elthonta moiran haireisthai kreon [my emphases]. we can see that dialogue. perhaps to the point that the two roles are exchanged. is aware that he poses some danger to the younger man (Nussbaum 1986. If we do. When Socrates says. perceiving his craving for Charmides. which as a manifestation of anteros. Critias." for I felt that I had been by a sort of wild-beast lion.8 and Eros in Plato's Charmides love. and devour (McAvoy 1996. "I with won't resist we continue to follow the erotic subtext of the dialogue we to "see him can view again. their attempt to tells Socrates that the two of them should cousin even define sophrosyne.

The holistic Thracian had taught that other part of malady of the head the body could only be cured through a regimen of care any directed at apply the soul. bringing the soul to a healthy state consequently expediting bodily health (156d-157c). will fall in love with him and care for him (210b-c)9 and give birth to the kinds of logoi that make young men better. If is .). or the entire body charm and the soul as well. someone suitable body.72 Interpretation merged. in the hopes that soul would prove amenable to such a charm that Socrates had agreed to speak with him. even if he has little to show on the that will be enough: the lover surface. he which rates says that once his composure and was able to consisted of a Charmides that the headache remedy he knew administered a leaf had to be had learned from concurrently with a charm (epode. his story about his meeting he had regained with Charmides and the others. a neat and quotation of Cydias encapsulates this reversal of in Continuing told surprising image. Then [the in a lover] must consider that beauty in souls is worth more than the beauty in his soul. on Charmides' description Zalmoxian therapy and from the third rung of He was looking body (step 1) but realized in time that its beauty was not (step 2). step. philosophos (154e-155a). and actually help nurture the Symp. Soc speak. With some confidence in that soul's made a proposal to the young man to next This would have been the Socrates in effect receptivity join him in constructing a kalos logos. came that Charmides would be willing to have Socrates' discussion of and was. cautions that the sexual desires couple on either side of the relationship should be kept in check so that the may enjoy each other's thoughts and pursue wisdom together. was composed of A Zalmoxian physician would charm. relationship eros of their souls (255a-256e. It was Socrates' version of the charm would Charmides' naturally prove to be an elenchus. but also in Euthydemus and our very Charmides (222a-b). The Alcibiades anteros not own corresponding only in Alcibiades himself. Critias had quickened a his expectation by assuring Socrates moreover. which cf. but he does not condemn the desires of either party. to the With this present and as a could cause sophrosyne to settle into one's soul and to be in it (engenomenes kai parouses). as Diotima defines it: to sophrosyne. The Charmides dramatizes the title character's expe Socratic eros the Symposium says that eros aroused a rience of (just as the Alcibiades I dramatizes Alcibiades' own first feelings roles Socrates' of anteros). 210a. 155e). Socrates' Halperin 1986. This cure he Thracian doctor working under the patronage of the god a Zalmoxis. which itself he beautiful words (logoi kaloi). met become should In the Phaedrus Socrates says that in He an ideal relationship eros be by anteros as a matter of course. His focus shifted (not without difficulty) to up. In setting himself up practitioner of Zalmoxian medicine Socrates promised to impart sophrosyne to Charmides by means of kaloi logoi. Diotima's ladder lover standing drawn to a so unique after all soul Charmides' (step 3). For Plato's treatment of see and anteros of in the Phaedrus Symposium.

and so with everything else controlled by sophrosyne. Soc rates argues for the identity of to kalon e. and it may well be that Soc sophrosyne in the Charmides implies his concomi so tant possession of dikaiosyne. keeping good things to one's own work (159b-160d). and.g. their investigation still fo 64e) cuses on the quality of admirability in various practices. When Socrates Diotima's ladder: made an appreciation of the beauty of knowledge the observation about the benefits to a city of provisional being tance governed Critias' according to sophrosyne. however. In other dialogues. possibility. he did so with the definition of the virtue as accep of of "knowledge of the other knowledge and of knowledge itself (166c). They consider kalon only in the first of these activities. (On the similarity in meaning Plato's dialogues. Indeed the Re principle followed by public is a much more extended discussion of nomoi than one's own is the Charmides.g. that he has both of the virtues required of sophrosyne and by a Diotiman lover. Charmides. own" every member of a city. but leads the three Critias' definition in the things" of sophrosyne as "doing speakers sequences of dialogue ultimately to a consideration of the social con sophrosyne construed in various ways (171d-173d). expanded as a and usefulness (to ophelimon. 165b) kind remains and his agreement with Socrates that point must therefore of the be some of episteme (165c). What Socra present sophrosyne tes says about later in the dialogue could be said perhaps more naturally of dikaiosyne: A house city run in accordance with sophrosyne would certainly be run well. like walking and talking with deliberate. showing modesty generally. and goodness (to agathon. diakaiosyne in Socrates mate also prompted on Critias to elevate the discussion to the next. From that on on. The began (to Critias' consideration of sophrosyne as a form episteme with gignoskein statement that sophrosyne was the same as and know ing it oneself heauton. "doing one's (to ta heautou prattein). Rep. (17 le) Socrates. 457b). Now the third concep tion of sophrosyne. and benefits for individual a polis of a knowledge of knowledge . as would a so governed. the element of to doing (163e-164d). seeking to evaluate the others on the basis of their goodness and societal benefits. penulti rung (episteme). (160d-161b). Phil. is accepted by Socrates and his interlocutors in the Republic as a definition for justice (433a). (161b-163d). see Larson 1951).Drama. about an individual soul (Charmides') to the of of a logos about It has been observed that the meanings sophrosyne and rates' dikaiosyne often apparent possession of overlap in Plato. the discussion possible Charmides an fixed for the meaning. expands his logos nomoi. In the Charmides of sophrosyne Socrates. Narrative. level again. The first logoi that would ensue would and Eros in Plato 's Charmides the 73 (to be conversations about beauty kalon) of customs or laws (nomoi) and practices or activities (epitedeumata) their (210c). and Critias begin discussion by considering likely manifestations of that virtue quiet circumspection in practice. e.

Sadly for Socrates.10 By show reading the drama how one and narration of the Charmides "about" with frequent refer ence to other dialogues. The fact that Diotima's ladder in the Sym posium reaches no to the vision of the Beautiful in proaches such level in the Charmides drama has little itself but that Socrates ap relevance for the Forms when question of whether Plato had in mind a theory of he wrote the Charmides. In the might Charmides he imagines how Socrates erastes. As an example. pp. especially the Symposium. For and other Kahn has early dialogues or dialogues in Kahn's terms) partly in order to prepare his readers for the fuller. I am con Plato had developed have an vinced that when he wrote both dialogues idea of philo sophical love that he wanted to express through the character of Socrates. In the Charm can Zalmoxis' ides these logoi Charmides tes' was not an out of the only be the elenchus. Kahn 1996. Lysis. If he had I such a necessarily have allowed that Socrates had in Plato did not choose to introduce the theory and. ostensibly. here eros. Laches. 541-49). Rather. as well as the philosophoi logoi that Socratic lover's discourse in the Phaedrus (257b). would not had. as it turned out. 148291. I do go not mean imply that Plato intended his original audience to back through the Charmides after kinds of point-to-point comparisons first reading the Symposium to find the I have been making.74 Interpretation and the various epistemai. conclude with an observation about of the significance of the narrative and or "ingressive" drama earlier the Charmides for the proposed wrote the "proleptic" reading some years now of Plato's dialogues Plato by Charles Kahn. According to Kahn's theory of prolepsis. He dropped Socra ascent could go no further with him. ideal youth with whom to give birth to such discourse. itself In the Symposium Diotima tells Socrates that the consideration of epistemai will allow the lover to see profound manifestation beauty in its of most and coax from him the kaloi logoi (210d). 56-70. pp. and Republic. more dogmatic treatment that his middle dialogues like the Re public would give to the ideas presented with less elaboration in the earlier "threshold" argued that Charmides ("premiddle" works. while in the Symposium acted in the guise of an he imagines how the actions of a philosopher- lover might be expressed in theory. vision. he as a solution to the question of sophrosyne. Phaedo. any case. the arguments of aporetic dia logues like the Charmides. 1988. to topic. can reinforce the understanding of that topic we achieve through the other dialogues. discussion before the topic of episteme came up. The discourse by the contemplation of pose the charm of knowledge here reminds us of the kaloi logoi that com comprise the therapy. and Euthydemus would tions to the reader that could only be answered by a consideration writings with reference suggest ques of these early to the others and after the appearance of the middle dialogues (the Symposium. he shows that the notion of the knowl- . my intention has been a certain to dialogue that is not. The near as contemplation of the he can come to the vision of beauty beauty of the epistemai philosophy brings the lover as prompted itself.

154). Hyland (1981. theoretical explorations Socratic eros in the Phaedrus especially in the Symposium. (1977. in which Alcibiades tells the assembled guests that one of his early 1. as here. see the critique of Kahn 1988 by Griswold 1988. so to speak. NOTES character other dialogues in which Socrates narrates directly (as opposed to narrating to another in the dialogue. 102. This recently. though rejected as a definition for courage and in the Charmides of and for the Euthydemus only becomes pp. the dialectically for trained philosopher kings of Republic V-VII (Kahn 1996.' seemed to me that I had fallen victim to a wild animal of sort. that thought the experience. [Cydias] said. pp. The with Socrates included a bit of wrestling. by which of fit neatly that there is a Socrates' ac tions and narrative anticipate of Plato's and more expositive. well: "Socrates was not simply outside of himself. 1988. by way of advice to presence of a lion and be snatched as a portion creature. while the middle help the reader to a fuller understanding of the earlier works." "dates" with conversations. more 184). If Plato's readers expected even from Cydias the more usual relation lion fawn :: erastes : eromenos. I would suggest dramatic prolepsis at work in the Charmides. by Mahoney (1996." someone. proposed this activity in the belief that "surely something would come out of also Dover 1978. the effect would have been an even more protracted pause 8. edge of good and and Eros in Plato 's Charmides sophrosyne 75 evil. has in common with the political art wisdom in the Lysis a possible political dimension understandable to which fully Plato's readers after they have met pp. makes the comment that "a chatterbox [adoleschos] is simply a white it. like in advising fawn in front of a lion. address his remarks to a specific second-person listener. but in those works he does not. Narrative. p. handsome boy. . he "[Cydias] for the beast. possible sexual meaning that the topic of a discussion makes no difference to endlessly on any theme (Mor. p. in the Laches. the passage in the reading than the one I propose Plato meant to elicit. pp. he also thought." measuring-line about such a person. One of the more modest of the methodological which one finds elegant support is the point that the aporetic works dialogues look forward to the middle dialogues. he stood himself him how he in relation to Kydias with respect to wisdom. 3. 'Take care not to go as a meat. Alcibiades. 179-80) captures the ambiguity of but seems to indicate Charmides as the referent for the lion: "When speaking of a p. puts 6. as in the Protagoras and Euthydemus) are the Lysis and the Republic. And gave some power his awareness of all his wisdom. pp. McAvoy (1996.' fawn into the just such a of I felt I'd been of caught by said Kahn (1996. in Kahn's work 203-9. 54-55. for example. (For an pp. Jowett 1961." observation has been p. p. 187) It also preserves the ambiguity care the text: a someone on the subject of a provide a meal handsome boy 'to take lest. Plutarch. 27) and. For the 5. concern " for p. who by this time was entirely smitten See Socrates. not opposing view. Although the specific details of his interpretation would perhaps to the 550-51. the Symposium. 82). together with his irresistible passion . 73 n. mention from what poem that differed parenthetically the possibility that Plato puts a spin on its author intended because the quotation alone does not indicate that Cydias had in mind : Cydias' the metaphorical relation lion fawn : :: eromenos : erastes. 2.Drama. 146). thing. Donald Watt's translation (1987." this . since he can speak 4. 7. 25. I to resist what had been an this. principles 542-46). Bruell was aware of was part of this point of made by North (1966. 513f)innuendo of "one little see McAvoy 1996. Cf. p. 187-88). and Kahn (1996. p.) kind kind of reading I have been pursuing here.

p. Human Journal of Philosophy 34: 183-99." REFERENCES Bruell. The Fragility of Goodness: Luck and Ethics in Greek Tragedy and Philosophy." 161-204. 1978. Kahn. Oxford: Oxford University Press. "Plato's Charmides and the Proleptic Reading of Socratic Journal of Philosophy 85: 541-49. The Virtue of Philosophy: An Interpretation of Plato's Charmides. MA: Harvard University Press. M.. University Larson. E." Dialogues of Plato. 1981. In T. Ithaca. 1966. trans. 1988. B." Mahoney. Cairnes. 1977. 1986. C. "Carnal Knowledge in the ern Charmides. Greek Homosexuality. Charmides. ed. Plato and the Socratic Dialogue. 1985. Kahn (1996. Edmonton: Academic Printing Publishing. T. D. Hanmondsworth. It is with Menexenus. 1987. Pp. Eng: Penguin. C. "Socratic Politics Charmides. In E. C. Cambridge. trans. "The Charmides: Socratic Sophrosyne. 1988. lacked sophrosyne in its in its manifestation as a kind of knowledge. Sophrosyne: Self-Knowledge and Self-Restraint in Greek Literature. 1962. McAvoy. D. "self-control. NY: Cornell University Press. Hamilton H. Charmides. "The Platonic Synonyms dikaiosyne nal sophrosyn and American Jour of Philology 72: 395-414." South Dialogues and with Plato (Apeiron 29. Benitez. Sophrosyne. 1996. 1996. K.. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1986. 1996. L. Pp. Pp. as well as reference to the protreptic speeches Socrates loves to or address to much-admired youths like Charmides Plato and Clinias (in the Euthydemus) readers to come to beautiful boys like Lysias 10." Classical Antiquity 5: 60-80. 1951. Athens: The Ohio University Press. The Collected Dialogues. Nussbaum. North. Watt.4). "Unifying Ancient Philosophy 5: Halperin. D." and Self-Knowledge: An Interpretation of Plato's Interpretation 6: 141-203.76 Interpretation 9. 1961. Griswold. and Jowett. 163-209. C. .. Hyland. 270) also has the Symposium and in these men philosophical noticed the connection between the logoi Socrates' shared by the lovers natural described in Socrates' conversations with attractive an interlocutors: "It is flirtatious to recognize with logoi implicit reference to conversations handsome like Meno. Journal of Philosophy 85: 550-51. H. Ed." Dover. 63-103. Princeton: Princeton University Press.. Saunders. 99-122. like Critias a member of the notorious oligarchic regime manifestation as Athens therefore also Peloponnesian war. Plato: Early Socratic Dialogues." and also reasonable to suppose that intended his to the Charmides ruling and the prejudice that after the Charmides. M. Potae Melici Graeci. D. Plato. J. Page. Cambridge: Cambridge Press. "Plato and Erotic Reciprocity. eds. "Platonic Eros and What Men Call Love.

he had played the liberal against the English oligarchy. if one is to make sense of his differ judgements his the American and the French and Revolutions.Liberty and Revolution in Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs of Bristol Mark Kremer The University of Chicago INTRODUCTION Two of the most noteworthy and seminal events and on during Burke's life were the American French Revolutions. Vol. in the pay of the North American colonies at the beginning of the American troubles. His own Whig party with his condemnation of the French Revolution was inconsistent went so his for the Americans. Public had decayed in both instances into hatred and revenge. and on prudential about grounds. posed the revolution in France because their doctrine the rights of man was leading ness anarchy and a subsequent military despotism. Like Marx. and one must ex as plain peculiar defense understanding of justice liberty they relate to prudence. was becoming of a tyranny. Burke them to threat of tyranny less from the selfishness of the bourgeoisie and from interpretation. No. because he thought that both revolutions supported the rights of man. because he thought both were part of an historical movement towards not see Marx did freedom.2 Burke's defense opposition to the of the influence American Revolution is properly seen in light of his of theory or abstract ideas on political life. 26. He them have wrote judgements thought support formed judgements far on extensively on both. He did not support the Amer ican Revolution because it He defended it ent protected the absolute right to freedom and equality. was an out-and-out bourgeois. Marx to as to attribute Burke's of apparent lack of principle his love of lucre.'" any essential difference between the two revolu tions. He op spirited saw the aristo- justified by a legal doctrine sovereignty. Burke's apparent inconsistency was also criticized by Paine. and his himself. Fall 1998. He was the American Revolution because their of against Parliament during indignation. He wrote the following Burke in Capital: "The romantic sycophant who in the pay of the laudator temporis acti against the French Revolution English oligarchy played the just as. 1 . Paine failed to grasp the consistency of Burke's judgement because he failed to grasp the reasons for Burke's support of the Americans.

yet it must also execute partially American traitors. one learn to the universal and permanent problems of political life in his treatment of the political of issues of his time. His speeches letters are informed by the immediacy of of events. The letter is a discussion about Britain's partial suspension of the habeas to corpus as a tool of war against the English in America. the on account of the war being a civil one. and it is no small thought that part of the art of the statesman to they had their limitations. in order to persuade his audience about the meaning To events. The American The British do rebels are not only thought of as authority enemy. rather than law. It is. there is a strong of as the part of the British. The political association is constituted by both the on aspect of law and the aspect of patriotism. he had to reflect on politics as a encompass whole. not disobedient want to Parliament and unfaithful to En them. absolute and abstract character of cannot theory is a poor guide principle. Yet. He is keep them justice of law consists in its impartiality. as he is for being a defender of constitutional government. He did not write a theoretical work on politics. On temptation. Burke's defense ciation of and of prudence against principle and theory requires an appre his art. Parliament must use the form simply suspend to punish of law to war. The whereas the justice of war consists in treat its citizens equitably. see his thought and his peculiar genius. and foreigners. who are gland. love of country is a defense foreign domination. A disobeyed be effectual. while partiality to whom one's own country. It is the nature of law to and the British have modified theirs to ensure ought not to its bite. but treasonous criminals. he also famous for arguing that policy needs to be guided by prudence. than from self-righteous cratic authority and self-righteous rebellion fueled by general and abstract ideas. Justice has two different aspects. fight the to rebels using the an law. Burke's rhetoric and reasoning appreciate the broadest questions about justice must and government. rebels. but punishment. In order to exact wage defeat the Americans. In doing so. The law from corrupting one another. because it must regulate both the relation between citizens as well as the relation between citi ciation zens. the habeas corpus in order to and unenforced law is not a law. must those same citizens must treat as enemies the rebels and foreigners against they fight. The Letter to the Sheriffs of Bristol (1777) is an excellent portrayal of how Burke understood the conflicting aspects of justice and how he managed those conflicts in the defense of political liberty. also the nature of law to be just.78 Interpretation privilege. however. equitableness of the because it is threatened a two different and fronts.3 for political life because justice however much be made into a consistent This means that Burke thought the laws to be the as guardian of freedom. Its force . The the law is against defense against internal tyranny. The political asso is necessarily a mixture of the general and the particular. one gains the distance faced philosophy The without abstracting from the concrete political problems by citizens and statesmen.

well suited to The theme of of Burke's letter is very an its audience. realm of war and there needs to as a distinction between the for war the realm of law. they are destructive to justice wars strike Civil deepest of all into the manners of the people.5 melancholy are not. They have lost confidence in justice. By the of law into the British destroy honest patriotism war. 189)4 which were the becomes gradually less dear to bond of charity whilst we agreed.Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs overreach of Bristol 79 the bounds be of the bounds force of what^can its justice. The hatreds bom either civil or of broken love have be a vengefulness that is not excused by war. and he the foresees attempt grave consequences from it. The spirit might partial of murderous hatred dominates in its and in its object and patriotism devotion. they pervert even the natural taste and relish for equity and justice. It is in this background of Parliament's to use the law as an instrument of war that Burke writes the Letter. By teaching us to consider our fellow-citizens in us. and the slavishness of despondency the extreme consequences of Brit ain's corruption of the law. or rather confusion. a hostile light. He gives to the sheriffs political reasons. for pursuing peace. when the communion of our country is dissolved. public spirited reasons. Britain's combination. they both an require a bond of love that is accompanied by a feeling simply negative and destructive. and this is where Burke steps in to make their desire for peace more than just a humane Ameri and pious hope. any more than its justice ought to overreach be enforced. Their problem is how to restore peace without the sword of justice. devoid of hope. of the whole body of our nation affection and new kindred. Their cynicism and 177). because and piety. they are not gether an the bonds of affection between citizens. they corrupt their morals. His opposition to the party by courage in the war party is . In order to maintain the integrity of law. necessity Although law the common good. He in effect helps to mold and strengthen a peace articulating the issues. (P. and by bringing the partiality of war into law. Of most all wars. The dissolution of a of a common good feeling and idea among the British accompanies the extremes of Burke foresees the savagery as of tyrannical barbarism hate tyranny and servility. They vitiate their politics. the required is of an extent that goes well beyond the equity required for justice under the realm of law and law. they wish for peace (p. however. bringing generality with hate. The Sheriffs Bristol have grown cynical and are sworn has become melancholy because the law to which they instrument of crime and tyranny. they dissolve alto of the common idea good. of the realm of policy is very disturbing to Burke. Burke puts his case for reconciliation with America before the on sheriffs and the public as can he did earlier with Parliament in his Speech Taxation. proposing a policy. and making a show of face of popular and Parliamentary hostility. The very names become incentives to hatred and rage. Burke thought that civil wars were the worst. but they have not lost their humanity.

80 Interpretation defense of expressed as a justice against tyranny. second. defeat. is behaving like who appear tyrant. proper. therewith. and. 178). rather giving it to treasury (p. those whom that act the act The second purpose of qualify by the name of pirates. 178). in fact. 179). Although piracy and their equation treason share the same sentence tween mistaken virtue and (death). by treating fourth. traced to the all-consuming anger of Parliament. third. to enable administration to confine. and then distribute a war themselves. . Hatred determines the crime. than law. as long as it shall think . contrary. put to death the the cargo amongst American men. because they do the possibility of their own deaths god. to infamy to punishment. The Letter about of shows that Americans owed less to ideas effects democracy and abstract rights than to his opposition to the fanatic theory on political life and his desire to protect political liberty. is to detain in England for trial those who shall commit high treason in is pleased to America" (p. but. because. to the they rejoice at quality of the action. The British will not them the respect owed to a noble love of liberty or to a formidable enemy. The determination infamous action. they take the confiscated cargo. Burke argues that the objects of the suspension corrupt the order of crimes. by treating innocent citizens inequitably. Parliament has taken the tone a criminal of an angry and all powerful but. the guilty justice in four different ways: first. Burke says that it under the cloak of naval is the British to be the pirates. the British the will not even allow them the pity owed to the con demned. 179). inconsistently. In fact. blurs the difference be (p. THE PARTIAL SUSPENSION OF THE HABEAS CORPUS The partial suspension of the habeas corpus has two objects: "The first. . the distinction itself of American rebels as pirates was made with the add intention allow of insulting them. The letter of as a whole teaches and practices prudence by both teaching the limits Burke's support of the law and by supporting the belief in it. image of death neither softens nor horrifies the British. The determination tableness of the law of enemy rebels as pirates undermines the by confounding the order of crimes. and All four corruptions can The partial suspension determines as pirates those American commanders and mariners of private ships and vessels of war which fall into British hands equi- (p. rather than the moral This habit of indulging their hatred threatens the morals of of American commanders and mariners as pirates reveals disturbing and state of the English soul. Their hatred is not entertain accompanied by pitiless- ness and fearlessness. by confusing by be denying the accused a fair trial. the British themselves. It is in this that one opposition to the fanatic of effects of theory and his defense the two of prudence finds the consistency Burke's reflections on revolutions. The determination a it.

180). therefore. the British more insult them order by calling them cowards. This insolent men as some only reflected in its characterization of American naval pirates. What example can an American in England serve the Americans at home? The unjust pun ishments only pride and execution serve to increase American vigilance. taking their goods. . far from making the British godlike. VIII (p. This manliness untempered whether by justifications and fears. The accused is.Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs Their wrath. as if In they is have killed British in to prove themselves virtuous. The punishments serve neither or nor the ends of which are victory. This attempt to punish the Ameri cans through the law brings the law into disrepute. that they will become savage. object of their own insults. Burke does habeas corpus not hesitate to precedent point out that the partial of the has its justice in King Henry war. therefore. but also in its description of American soldiers in general. Parliament denies a place for patriotism in the moral order and. tying half dead in England). 181-82). makes them of Bristol 81 lower than the By moral qualities of allowing their indignation to dictate the order of crimes. 180). (pp. The spirit of just victory is completely lacking habeas in the British. because the legal process appears to be nothing more than a cover for the arbitrary will of Parliament. and Burke suggests that this pitilessness will become a permanent part of the British character. of a The mere thought of shackling the to have them arrive ship (only where Americans. they Britain are only hardened by the punishments. It is only the perverse hate that of a tyrant will that could cause one to congratulate oneself for an tenfold upon one's suspension be retaliated friends. manly defiance becomes the only virtue. it and expresses of itself in simple or the domina of tion. should the ment English be victorious. rather than the the crime. peace. tried ac cording to form. their proper time is cannot give punish after the war. it be the imprisonment killing enemies. the absence of justice. but it does produce punished not even the desired effects of punishment. It is particularly important to understand that the blurring of the distinction be tween treason and piracy is only possible at the expense of love of country. them down and then in the hold tossing them in forma trial. ought to evoke feelings of horror jail. finds itself in god a world where strength and a tyrant in so far as is the only claim to authority. Yet the English in will await a pro they have lost all feelings of pity and humanity for their fellow Englishmen in America. because it is blinded by its own indignation. corpus The second object of the partial suspension of the who shall commit is "to detain (p. but not according to justice. in England for trial those But these trials cannot high treason in America" bring possibly be just. After strength not is American should defeats. Parliament replaces justice with force and will. because the accused cannot possibly forward witnesses to defend himself. and The proper place for the punishments is in America. Parliament its proper time and place. it acts like both a its actions are not justified by country. Not only does the trial of Americans in England corrupt justice. both.

parliament is incapable of such prudence. because it leaves no place for decent political attachments. 188). because it is The empty prisoners are formality of legal proceedings and the inconsistent treatment of not. 182). The The exchanged prisoners were ing prisoners is to make clearly pardoned. by breaking draws the first principle of law. however. but its to the corruption of manners. expediencies of war necessitate the unequal treatment of prisoners. Burke finds it disturbing that the partial suspension. the British are intent on punishing as traitors those prisoners who remain mination of American of to the yet reasoning in their hands (p. belief in What not makes the partial suspension of the habeas corpus truly dangerous is would its corruption of law. 184). naval men as they were allowed to go free. but the distinction between men in the realms treats the innocent differently. accords with them and moves them partial suspension codifies their further in the and same direction (p. liberty principle. The unequal treatment of American prisoners only treats the guilty unequally. like the deter pirates. openly denies some men their rights while protecting those of others (p. The law be of no effect most if it were opposed feelings and ideas of the people. because it between citizens. en one of it to a greater requires degree (p. that it be The partial suspension the distinction between men in the differ ent realms and.82 Interpretation The punitive hate of Parliament even extends to the exchange of prisoners. It dissolves the nation be citizens without the dissolves by dissolving shared the common good. therefore. It shakes the foundation of the nation general. the limiting qualification. innocence and guilt dependent to do with therefore not to pardon the remain upon circumstance. to punish the exchanged prisoners. Apathy is the accompanying obverse of legislated hate. . The hatred affection between the British and the remaining bonds of English in America. justice is the as act's can most dangerous is a that. But. it is more prudent not to make crime and punishment respect issue to prisoners. It hardly seems just. corrupts justice because according the action the earlier prisoners should have been punished. as a life was given in return for a life. the worst aspects of the partial suspension. At the end of the war. justice possibility The partial suspension destroys public spiritedness by destroying the public. How can there can belief in fates? How there be a belief in shared fates when the law separates of those who are under it? This cynicism with respect to the has the effect of disaffecting decent citizens from politics altogether. But the British punitive. never mind possible. instead of of taking out the sting. this action. Burke says general venoms equity. respect for justice has Since the much how consistently the innocent an and guilty with are treated. 186). far as he tell. far from being the opposed to manners. This offense to threat to political liberty. The issue liberty is really requires the Liberty a common good equality under the law.

have with doses of fear. The British must doubt themselves. In obstinate light of the dangers lie ahead. be can fore they be enlightened. and full of perplexed and treacherous (p. . he tells the he was that the mazes way ahead is intricate. Burke raises the the unknown. in love of country. They have the shamelessness to celebrate the names of victory of German are mercenaries and to concerned with herald the German generals. But the British have lost their honest prejudices which supported their love of liberty. the attachment to country. He reminds them that the war has taken on a magni made the tude unimagined the fear of the to secret ain by those who either wished it or feared it. Burke asks the British to look between the people and their representatives. He speaks to the consciences. British disaffection for their past connected to a lack for their future. He even speaks as courage justice. He even wishes that some abuse of the partial suspension would touch them. 191). 189-90). Burke can move With the reawakening of his rhetoric from fear to shame. attempts to moderate the extremes of hate and apathy by encour and aging the belief in virtue past. public Since British spiritedness has decayed into hatred in order of Americans. Parliament's fury appears both ridiculous and irresponsible. the confidence fueling their hatred (recent that victories they have not increased their authority. The British have spread devastation but have only the ground they encamp on and no more. it blinds them to their own nobility and their own good. might says that be of some consolation was enlightened for the loss is of their old if the reason of the British in proportion to the removal their honest prejudices. He wants to awaken in the people the jealous love liberty. with because they harm to their Burke regards of less it British virtue and glory than doing enemies (pp. and moral Burke must appeal to private advantage to moderate the British. despite American defeats. if only through fear. He first reminds the British of their noble order to en a representative of the traditionalists. Their hatred causes them to live in the pre sent. Burke Having specter of British doubt the certainty of victory. made the reminds them British feel invincible). dark. British of as individual citizens with individual interests One the ways to make the British think about their welfare is to destroy. he says unknown a reality. of concern But. In sheriffs that order to give privy biting information concerning the real threat foreign powers posed to Brit in the last year. He reminds are threatened by their rulers even more than of by the rebels.Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs PRELUDE TO DIALOGUE of Bristol 83 By past raising the issue of liberty they the war towards the relation the British that and tyranny. He even uses images to induce doubt and fear. as they are Burke's letter indifferent to its injustice only because they do not suffer from it. The specter of foreign powers is meant to re awaken the ties of kinship which and the love of country.

He also tells them that they will not get one cent from America. or at money in the form of best the British can hope for is to not receive them. No desolate widow weeps tears blood over [their] ignorance" (p. He has been building towards an explicit for reconciliation but tion and greed. "no blood pays the forfeit of [their] rashness. helpless creature. closest least the to save their reputation not to look weak and foolish in frustration and defeat. Those in favor of the war. Parliament needs wis dom be and justice. states to the . show little are content to real magnanimity.84 Interpretation It is The and no excuse poorest for presumptuous ignorance. calling for battles which but his servility to it. contending to save itself from an object respectable justice cannot oppression. actually the hypocritical others. any without civil wisdom or military skill. the cold doses of fear that Burke throws nal the heated anger of the British prepare a more ratio discussion the war. rather than simply force and in light of the real situation must will. is in the eyes of God and man. pair facing the Brit ish. they their country. order to render others contemptible and wretched. Burke suggests his audience to conclusion for themselves) that the British should quit while they are ahead. rather than to punish and to subjugate. the taxes. Far from man's of being cowards. as if they kindred blood pours like from the arms of foreign soldiers. But I conceive any existence under heaven (which in the depths of its wisdom tolerates all sorts of things) that is more truly odious and disgusting than an impotent. 191) Burke to shatters the upon illusion of Parliament's bear its strength. Burke must discuss the rewards of war. They they would offer themselves promise for battle but fortunes hire German mercenaries. He reminds the British that the goal of the war was to increase their wealth. those in favor of peace are acting responsibly. of uncertain In light victory and certain understood as Burke reinterprets this partaking famous of death. Being godlike authority by bringing reason limited in its strength. The victories fear of could only make it once he had tamed indigna humiliation upon which he builds places the recent are not proofs of allows in a new light. Burke has for his plan. pride of a coward. 199). With the awakening of their interests. The mocking insolence of the British is who is courageous at the expense of Besides laying of a foundation for on shame and love of country. that it is directed by insolent passion. The British can at best hope to maintain trade monopolies. By prepared the ground argument reducing British hopes to the salvation of their reputation. without a consciousness of other qualification for power arrogance. far from being manly. but they will thing In light of this hopeless prospect. and satisfied to be himself mean and miserable. dominion in which he cannot exercise. They (he British invincibility draw the He but of good fortune. manliness and cowardice judgement. being that crawls on the earth. bloated with pride and he is not to fight. contending for a violent (P. and notable their private and they mortgage exult themselves performed some water exploit. when in triumph.

THE ARGUMENT FOR RECONCILIATION The of argument for reconciliation must address itself directly to the accusation treason. above the voices of many. The British have broken so many promises that it expect to expected would to initi absurd be for them to death in them the way. themselves. by pointing to the arbitrariness of Parliament's American policy. the Americans must trust in themselves. they must earn that trust. He is cautious in his blame. Burke is faced dangerous and colossal task of himself American policy If one man is to be heard dividing and conquering a nation unified in its hatred. to that to reconcile while of in a position of strength is magnanimous the glory Parliament. therefore. to risk with defeat their own arms. therewith. he must invoke a truth beyond the source and collective or conventional of wisdom. to be the for the the war in England. as it is asserted that talk of peace encourages rebellion (p. This is his moves to first statement about British guilt. Burke turns to reason as the foundation his policy. he wards ate it slowly by first arguing that the Americans cannot be peace. The obstacle to almost unanimous support with peace seems. the Americans are virtually alone. Burke argues that rebellions are provoked rather than encouraged. In taking his case for reconciliation to the public (the letter is meant for circula tion) Burke is able to exploit the division between the people and their repre sentatives. Burke's not criticisms of disputing their right to trying to make unanimity are not direct criticisms of the people. and be trusted. because his objections to its policies only increased its obstinacy. rather than certain tyranny. Just a short time . the British must form a strong peace party confidence. He directly to the unanimity by which Parliament justifies its by first drawing the distinction between agreement and truth. 195). He is be heard but is rather competing for their ear. Burke has absented himself from Parliament. remains as he stated earlier to Parliament in his Speech on American Taxation and. of Without the affection and strength Englishmen. In order to and break this whom circle of hate distrust. cynicism. a division that has lost its tension due to widespread hate and The English in America their fellow will only put their confidence in a peace party that contains the popular support of the people. Honesty and prudence compel him to take his case to those decent citizens in whom there still exist justice and pity. the power under will be popularly recognized as such.Burke 's Letter to the Sheriffs of Bristol 85 British. He is the people doubt Parliament and. But Parliament illusion that it is omnipotent and believes that any limit placed on its is necessarily a sign of weakness and an insult to its honor. (1774). and Burke shows As things stand. the Americans can place their The way to form and strengthen the peace party is not through parliamentary debate. both addresses popular and parliamentary.

when public . be governed. but people. 210-11). even though right of they have no representation.86 ago Interpretation Parliament unanimously opposed the war and was willing to negotiate a peace. Par liament must. because the British had suffered defeats. Burke people not justified by an abstract legal right. to separate not accuse the British nation for the war. he can accuse aggrandizement. I must attend to public opinion. therefore. can neither be admired by those who love virtue nor ness of followed by those who worship the promise of success. and he able to blame the with sympathies for the hinges war and to encourage a peace party towards the English in America without appearing treasonous. Burke paints a picture and cowardly in defeat and confident and insolent Parliament lacks the gravity and constancy of reason and character. because Parliament claims to have the sovereignty. Now. Parliamentary of obedience sovereignty is (p. 207) omnipotence. GOOD GOVERNMENT In the Letter to the and ity of Parliament Sheriffs of Bristol we see Burke attack the ruling author defend the colonists. 205). granted social rights (pp. Burke recognizes Parliament's sovereignty only because it its power has exercised for a long time and continues to do so. having recently tasted victory. but that their desires should be respected because of their strength. It rides the of Parliament that is fearful in victory. The argument for reconciliation on an argument about good government. Due to the strength and the constitution ought to have offices which can variability be appealed to of public opinion. at best. so as to offend the people. without regard to the general opinion of those who are to opinion a That general is the vehicle and organ of theory to entertain Without this. its passions and mind are enslaved to the prevailing fortune it meets. that it is not will be resisted. because Parliament has given itself claims the right over to doctrinaire fanaticism. He turns their traces the cause of the war to bad politicians government. beg leave to observe. He implies that Parliament is waging the war for its own Burke tries to awaken within the breasts of the British their minds towards jealous love British of liberty. The people are. by habits argues that abstract Parliament rules for the He does not argue that the have rights. but it is nothing in the direction of affairs. Parliament to tax the Americans. Parliament is unanimously in support of the war. but that no other given part of only the invidious branch of taxation that legislative rights can be exercised. (P. The arbitrari can serve as a wedge its policy cannot but induce doubts that the lukewarm from the majority While Burke dares British politicians. it may be the mind. therefore. legislative The not government should exercise its rule with as much reserve as possible. rather than oppress it. He is thereby domestic politics. waves of chance and.

as it was by the New Whigs. to be mistaken. one sees that he flatters hopes to put pressure on and Parliament. The voice of and his friends is are a weak minority. just in they are needed (p. Freedom is not an abstract principle. but because of a consistent opposition to the influence of ab stract theory on political life. Freedom then be understood as to any government it is understood by the Americans. of Bristol 87 The government must act as a kind of grievance committee. Compromise If the in the the and reform. If Parliament had listened to and had studied the Americans. In light freedom. If one puts together his discussion of good government of his policy reconciliation. then the responsible should party Parlia to case of the American Revolution god of be prudent enough satisfy complaint. not because of a perverse humor. ment. . because of the fixed sentiments and beliefs Burke the people. freedom others. Reason cannot tolerate an freedom in theory is its death in inconsistent principle. which The British make a studying the are not particular circumstances prudence they must decision. but with the belief that the problem is not with the entire constitution. 208). is a feeling felt by those who are subjected to the oppression and admits rules Freedom is primarily freedom from to various not degrees paying depending in on the people being ruled (p. compromise to the extent that first principles are better left uninvesti By painting the world in extremes. 211).Burke 's Letter to the Sheriffs opinion changes. it free would know that the Americans must are averse other than a one. But Parliament is are not attention to public opinion. The this lower world (prudence) is needed to secure the blessing of the lower world (peace). and it must have the to appropriate offices for the appropriate complaints. is of theories of susceptible government to the ex tremes of theory. Burke the veto power of with the monarchy. as a defense of freedom in general. but are account thinking in terms of an abstract legal doctrine that fails to for the character of the factions. He condemned the French Revolution in no uncertain terms. doing what one wills. religion more the monarchy. but it which gains might strength through the knowledge that there Since institutions in so public opinion is they important. Thus it is wise not destroy case the convocation of the clergy or any other ceremonial also mentions offices. They practicing (the god of this lower world). however. they embody than parlia ment. through pressures placed on. It requires compromise. Burke is quick to point out that. of all becomes such tyranny as and usurpation because freedom is thought The perfection of in an extreme form. and even independence. politics. parliament can no longer legislate religion. whereas politics tends to blame entire constitu demands gated. like authority. Parliament must be heard. ought not Burke's defense of American freedoms. the particular men running the govern people are sane enough responsible to articulate their particular grievance and blame those ment for the problem. the charac understand ter of those over which it governs. Freedom. from. and. rather theory require tions for injustice. than the particular men in power or an easily remedied law. the clergy and of maybe even veto and its legislation. any more than is sover of eignty.

because it is a principle of compromise. The idea as of no taxation without representation does his criticism. No taxation of a parliament without representation does not deny the legitimacy It is to exist or legitimacy of grievances against one. The British Parliament the authority of a god.88 thus. because the hatreds of civil war difficult to satisfy. bom of sovereignty and rebellion tend to fortify the most extreme of self-righteous of the most extreme circumstances. The French revolutionaries made their anger absolute by claiming principles of and serve General freedom to tive to speak for the rights of man. Yet Burke's criticisms of abstract theory ously not effects of are obvi directed against general principles in general cisms of religious fanaticism are directed against religion not arouse any more than his criti in general. He is critical of favorably the disposed to the former but the latter two. and the monarchy the status and rights they for themselves. of and are defiant of past therefore contain an element of mission that is lacking in Not the least Burke's concerns was the alliance between the hate that is the heart ideas were of civil war and abstract philoso religion as a new source of phy. Abstract ideas . thus denying claimed the church. the aristocracy. not a principle that is destructive of all order and prudence. collective are bom from disappointed trust. General theories passions. they affection. He even considered civil war worse than are more savagery. rather than acknowledges the hate. the latter has its in the wrath sovereignty fortify puni hate because they make authority absolute while denying the opposition the right to exist. it implicitly legitimate The rights other possibility of legitimate authority as well as rebellion. Interpretation one must understand the demands of each faction and what is needed to satisfy them. and savage cruelty. Burke sees fanaticism leading to the practical both anarchy and tyranny. of principles of destruction that sovereignty of parliament are. as he saw that philosophic replacing hatred by lending fortify historical meaning to killing the enemy. made themselves absolute by claiming they denied their opposition the right to resistance. In abstract theory. These feelings and ideas of significance drown out the feelings of pity and horror that are the humane emotions evoked by slaughter. rather than cod ified. they claimed to embody mankind. because they only extend and exacerbate the evils of civil war. do the doctrines of the rights of man and the absolute sovereignty of parliament. One of Burke's rhetorical goals in the Letter to the Sheriffs of Bristol and the Reflections on the Revolution in France and encourage murderous cosmic and world fanaticism. of man and the absolute hand. on the are bom more from vengeance than an government.6 ire of an atheist. Moments authority lived. Burke considered civil war as an evil worse than national wars because the and self-righteous rebellion ought violence of civil war to be short is untempered by a concern for the common good. idea the common good or of legitimate while The former is bom source of the antitheological of a god.

greed. is contrary to the first and principles of politics. By looking into the actions and motives of the principles of the revolution. He looks at the character the revolution and shows how the actions of the and the various groups leading revolution reflect their individual low motives. the revolutionaries treat country in the way as would a foreign conqueror. He defends decent morality accuse and obedience to the law as necessities for a free people.Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs is to restore simple and of Bristol 89 the and feelings of pity. he never argues that revolutionary idealism than a platform and in effect. In this.8 The incommensurateness of theory and politics comes into focus most clearly in the revolution's activity of legislation. to law by evoking the pity fear accompanying the breaking of it and. The legislator must whole. malice. horror. guilt. could and satisfy their books by confiscating church property speculating it. The Reflections. broke faith. The goodness of the cause and the wisdom of the laws cannot be reduced to mo tives. just as their crimes are contrary to human and divine law. though in theory. and placed personal gain was before their ideals. In not fact. the aristoc and monarchy. who resented vengeance and on their exclusion from title honor. and especially to science. pocket- anything more by which the merchant class. he must have an understanding of the ends of government and each of the parts contribute to that end. order a of how This is especially the case in a philo sophic revolution. because the citizens need theoretical principles for knowl edge of their rights and duties. It is a stage upon which Burke brings before the racy. Burke is new fully aware of this and undertakes an examination of the science of politics that is being used to found the French republic. He after places the discussion of their science of legislation the quasi tragedy in Their order to confirm through reason what science of government he had evoked through passion. They destroy . the by restoring calm and comfort by demonstrating and that the revolutionary contradicts science of politics is destined to defeat doom because it requirements of life. in particular. their persecutors.7 He gives them human feeling justifies their exis He shows their virtue and beneficence Burke also with which they were painted. eyes each of the revolution's victims the church. confiscations. might Some Burke of being fact reductionistic and opportunistic. The Reflections justifies obe dience then. and executions. Burke says that the first law of revolutionary legislation is to their own destroy all that came same before it. and affection by describing suffering crimes of innocence of the murdered and the stupidity. Burke removes the claim to justice with which they excused their faithlessness. and the tence. is helpful for understanding Burke's opposi tion to abstraction. thereby lightens the blackness diverts the imagination away from and all the grandiose claims of the revolution to about universal of righting wrong and to bringing freedom and the brotherhood of man. He argues that the revolu tionaries slandered.

The ancient sceptics had no public spir itedness because they thought the law was conventional. Their them. It is who are undoubtedly true." Burke denies cause him to despise the By showing theory. This defines their task and wisdom of their new Burke struction. The legislator have of in his soul. by By hating habit they only unfurnished with patterns of the fair to take no delight in the contemplation of those come to vices too much. Philosophy not place be so him beyond the suffering blinded by indignation at the nor vengeful his fellow human beings. yet he must not spectacle of injustice that he hopes to bring The legislator is neither about a Utopia through punishment and persecution. for the work of reformation: because their minds are not come good. they do the not seek to reform but to build from political science. offices. philosopher. but that does not the conflict between politics and mind when rational. . he the appearance of continuity to mends and patches. which means they have feasted exclusively on satire. that they . . he teaches limits of both.10 Burke's understanding legislator is inextricably connected to his understanding of the nature of politics. . united them as a people. nor fanatic visionary. they of any interest. because moderation they are defi must in love. philosophers are fanatics: independent tractable. almost says that the revolutionary legislators have a disposition towards de that They have the taste of Paris. the modem atheists are revolutionaries that politics politics. they from love men too little. Your legislators seem to have taken their opinions of all professions. ranks. because they think politics can be made can be made fully rational. and that the habit of criticizing and good breaking the law tends to must give make human beings completely lawless. those are unqualified habitually and employed in finding and displaying faults. Burke has two types in he speaks of the thorough- . who would themselves be if they were held to the letter seem of their own descriptions. of from the declamations astonished and buffooneries satirists. it always flies before 520-21) defects must of Hate cient and abstraction are the legislative soul. God. though it may paradoxical. which if it operated alone would make them more rage are carried away with such headlong race towards every desperate trial. but things. but in general. humanity (Pp. would sacrifice the whole human to the slightest of their experiments. are ready to declare that they for the good they pursue.90 the Interpretation beliefs and habits that nothing. is at their horizon like their horizon. Like the of the good seamstress. Nothing can be conceived more hard than the heart of a thoroughbred metaphysician they a period do not think two thousand years too long and. He is aware that all rebel lion contains evil.9 The critical negativity that stems a love of ridicule is compounded by the detachment These and abstractness of the scientific mind.

which of it. decent morality his rhetoric and Burke understood that prudence and used were threatened by the French Revolution. while geometry reduces them to number and shape. rats. His attempt to restore the political perspective from that of abstract rights and science of wants. like promises proportion. and may in and do exist in total degree much greater . At best. and exist in much greater clearness. unique character of Geometry. Its rebel to be used against them. The materialism of the chemists expresses political arena as antitheological and antiaristocratic accompanied itself in the from but it lion is not. a by numerical from understand the science of the revo lution to have divided itself into these different functions.Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs bred metaphysician of Bristol 91 the geometrician and the chemist. and order to do so it must must division and of labor. cannot recognize the politics. creating Burke does. atomism except by a principle of order. and Reduction and abstraction are the essence of their sciences. an un geometry differentiated mass. the uniqueness of human beings 301). but these are the two categories over which a man has no control. possibility (Reflections. up France create districts according to for loyalty to a measuring stick. to have the power of ordering. to show reasoning in many different the Revolution's shocking immorality and In confronting the French Revolution Burke himself was forced to put forward the first principles under which morality and prudence live. in fact. In formative act. Chemistry reduces human beings to their lowest common element. because it deals political order upon with number and The is not. and he ways on different occasions ridiculous absurdities. whereby chemistry creates and order uses its materialism to oppose groupings authority. they to represent and to secure those interests. 524). The number geometricians who are and shape dividing ask and. its rela tions depend more graphical accidents than upon numerical necessity. Nothing can come for infinite divisibility. The geo boundaries and of political associations are are meant formed by interest rather than symmetry. a mathematical order. however. begins with the idea that the end of government is the satisfaction Government is independence not made in virtue of natural rights. chemistry and geometry can produce a association.12 chemistry. These two types are legislators for the Europe and even new republic in France and have their ambitions set on all of the entire world. however. and reaction of those experiments consist in churches and ammunition the manors of aristocrats and then tearing down the transforming the rubble into ire. The chemists would like to turn The all of Europe into laboratory using men like the revolutionaries are more proud of than their chemical action There is nothing experiments (p. and recognize recognize and the peculiarity of the political But chemistry and geometry are material and simple. Legislation is deliberative p. therefore. substance Chemistry and (matter) its own geometry can only recognize the categories of quantity.

not political because he temper ment the idea of right. people can Burke thinks that the live content under the watch of Parliament. give repealing the tax. developed its own Ideological differences. do not rise to dissent among the people as naturally as do particular situations which clearly threaten their welfare and their liberty. such.92 Interpretation of abstract perfection: a but their abstract perfection is their practical defect. Burke opposed abstract was against began. from the funda mental end he derived a new basis for the rule of gentlemen and a new under standing of ancestral authority. If there are to be compromise and freedom. (P. for America had. The doctrine that because moral man is selfish poses a great threat to leveling made destroys trust in government as unsuspecting confidence. The belief that the cause government it is conducive to resignation. 215). Burke therefore He have been virtuous men who cared about the public. To the contrary. He also points out the opportunistic reasons that lie behind the opinion that all excuse themselves is selfishness. By having right to everything they want everything. But the actions of Parliament and the arguments of sophisticates suggest that all men act solely for themselves. 222). Unsuspecting confidence look after is simply trust that the government will not be oppressive and will interests. 370) Burke did of not a contrivance of derive from this end the equal right of each to be the sole judge oneself. then there must be moral . If Parlia had the Americans and by differences between the British covered. then all the political the Americans would never have been un by this point. of Thus he amongst argues that "unsuspecting which all confidence is the true rest" centre gravity mankind. He begins where other modern theorists but he combines the fundamental good with the old order. theory in the name of the satisfaction of wants. inherently Why would corrupt is a servile belief. be would someone attempt to change the government if he thought the change would not improve things? There be no pressures placed on the government in order to keep it responsible to the public. Burke hopes freedom and to cure apathy and cynicism with spirited jealousy is of one's own belief in the possibility of civic virtue. or rather conflicts provisionary mode of principle. to tax in order to restore American trust.13 The British drove the Americans to rebellion by not one's Burke is willing to strip Parliament of the power looking after their complaints. 221). about the parts are at (p. since the belief in argues that there civic virtue is impossible (p. or to an equal share in government. asks the public to government believe in virtue and to believe that corruption is not innate to like to (p. of government. Unsuspecting interests confidence assumes that the government will look after public and not their own private interests. but because he wanted to it against abuse satisfied from both authoritative and rebellious pride. Government is human wisdom to provide for human wants. courtiers and political men would public in or der to enjoy freedom from scrutiny and indignation.

The the rights of man French Revolution's it was claim to be defending fails to acknowl the rights of the French with which they concerned themselves. should the people rule. therewith. If be a nation and is to be more than a band of robbers. avarice. The as are though people dis must. The issue of property to that other moderator of takes Burke away from the satisfaction of wants partisanship patriotism. therefore.14 birth that form own will or consent are not continuity and community. a Unsuspecting blind faith or apathy. Burke thus suggests is rare and weak. rather than connections of its sovereign. an Perhaps most important. but because he saw that they The are that each man be the judge of the means to his own preservation and and happiness authority that he have an equal share in government to all other men. from time yet does not require the usurpation of authority Burke preferred unsuspecting confidence to the rights of man. He does backs gusted not want but that belief in its possibility better insures the people to become misanthropists who turn their on political life completely because they by the greed. but they do are not possess the character and mind to demagogues. The people are the product of the constitution. function of the people was to be a brake on the The people are a visible strength that always puts fear into the few who rule. Burke the rule of gentlemen not only because of their education and expe also rience but sidered because of their relative weakness to the people. on habits of continuity gains the thought that prescription gives any basis in one's but also ennobling. it must means justify its borders to itself must to others. there would be no brake on as them (with the exception of a preferred military dictatorship). This necessity of justice that equality The understood as qualified by country. Burke con guardian their fear to be a that the of their virtue. natural Burke thought the rulers. and a brutality of accepting of political men. Some have so much authority to the past that Burke must . who ity and who seek They easily misled by blame everything on the inequality of property and of author to remedy all ills by bringing both under the rule of equality. just the aristocrats and parlia confi ment must show some concern not for convenience and wants. satisfy those grievances. they are too strong to oppose. have dence is to time degree of public spiritedness. but. not so much because he thought there entailed were no such rights. They competent to judge their grievances by their feelings. they provide only necessary Burke's attempt to found attachments and authority attachments without status of morality in prescription. in which it depends. but trust that is called to account and office. is gentlemen have defending the habits of continuity on interest in property and.Burke 's Letter to the Sheriffs indignation directed that virtue at of Bristol 93 the government from time to time. liberty. of the people actually threatens the satisfaction of wants. Every edge that nation must exist somewhere to the exclusion of other nations. however. not contradict Even the claim to global revolution and liberation does the fact that the French would not recognize the claim of an Englishman to an equal share of French land.

. Liberty is in danger of being made unpopular to Englishmen. he thought it was the best form of government precisely because it came into being through a series of accidents over a long period of time. brings a degree of the common good. CONCLUSION The spirit of equitable justice that is corpus offended and dissolved by the partial suspension of the habeas leads to the twin tendencies of tyranny and cynical despair.94 Interpretation a have been He did traditionalist. It gives the political body continuity and its citi zens a shared past and a shared providence destiny. it is viewed as an unintelligible and superhuman force. The best can constitution is not the product of the of practice. rather. but he never allows the idea of impartiality or universality to dominate politics. not think that the British constitution was the best form of government origins and because it had divine because it was his own. satisfies and its benefits are those habits of virtue and affection that preserve the constitution. and so unarmed to whatever approaches in the shape of disgrace. To the contrary.15 The hidden hand is not. Prescription Burke's ideas a matter of of political convenience and political pa process triotism. Provi dence appears godlike in its mysterious dispensation. He was too impressed with the virtue to place so much emphasis on the particularity of politics and its need for law and its form. force. He economics. we begin to acquire the spirit of domination and to lose the relish of honest equality. because he never believed is not Hegel's state. History is so far from being rational that it is turned to in order to support attachments that are threat ened by reason. But Burke did not equate the ancestral with the good. Contending for an imaginary power. never harmony between natural desire and that history constituted a realm of be real. however. and beneficence. It is impossible that we should remain long in a situation which breeds such notions and dispositions and without some great alteration in the against national character. all other Those ingenuous feeling minds who are so fortified things. mind. . viewed by its beneficiaries as a series of accidents grounded in man's desires. The origins are inferior to the end product. for the a leading to is the does for politics what satisfying Adam Smith did for result of variety of needs and desires. Burke never lost sight of the conflict between the particular and the universal. but the end product does cess not exist independent of the pro by is which it came into being. Prescription the constitution is satisfying want. history could that it could be The British constitution defends the equity of the law and recognizes how important it is to the common good. Burke believed that rational. It is something to be Although He respected. . Burke never thought reality. tion or even an proven idea that be conceived greatest independent Prescrip beneficence.

which which he lends credence. he and sought indignant fanaticism. to be grown in disrepute. In to preserve prudence and public spiritedness from cynical politics was not that of a suspect particular. 260. not leads to tyranny and misanthropy by destroying an idea and a feeling of the common good. contains its abuses within it. the British Parliament has in fected justice hatefulness and expediency. 223) By fighting prudent a war with with laws and punishments. the latter necessarily corrupts. The suspension would outrage the public if it were abused at home. but that his portrayal of the problems of politics and much art unless his defense he had its perspective could not perspective. disheartened and disgusted. So. Macpherson (Burke [New York: Hill and so far as Macpherson saw in Burke a bourgeois capitalist above all . but because he loves virtue and country more than himself. 1980]) follows Marx in 1. He age gives an account of himself as a representative in order to encour the belief in virtue and the love of liberty. Burke himself is be an example of judge of yond the salutary hopes to virtue. a God. B. as an alternative to the Burke did not citizen and of portray the life of reason the statesman. to foster the love of Furthermore. but rather in his beneficence and wisdom. Capital I (Moscow. in order to guard against their authoritativeness and brutality. Burke offers no greater counter example to the extremes of his time than himself. The partial suspension. although Burke recognizes the power of public opinion and public opinion the need to work with it. but they can trust him. espe cially in the great. he will not sacrifice by flattering ment his judge to the majority and even feels that it is for what he owes them as a represen tative. he is in his self-right eous wrath. so or a misanthropist. be executed with seen past that NOTES Wang. Burke constantly encouraged prudence in the governing. C. which will retire they considered as sure means of honor. on hand. He does not court power the prevailing opinions of the people. (P. It would have been much more universal for it simply to only the other while suspend the habeas corpus universally. Unlike Parliament. he apathy sought to preserve the perspective and attachments of political life. In turning to life of the prescription and polemics against theory. he also recognizes the need to recognize virtue. 1954) p. Prudence makes the former feasible.Burke 's Letter to the Sheriffs of Bristol 95 finding these principles. He is ment and goes well beyond the presentation not godlike himself as a virtuous representative. only because they have elected him. Karl Marx. His Yet one cannot of visionary. country a universal suspension would serve liberty and by awakening the sense of urgency amongst all the citizens. and he encouraged the people towards a measured jealousy of their liberty so that they would not become either slavish or ambitious. The greatest fault of the partial suspension of the habeas corpus is that it He is not one of the people.

1994]) argument. Conor Cruise O'Brien (The Great judgement of the French Revolution is Melody [Sinclair: Stevenson.96 else. Phaleas'. 9. Stephen Browne (Edmund Burke Alabama Press. but according to his fancy. 6. in whose 6. sympathize with Burke's ideas of prescription. adorned himself with expensive ornaments and long hair. 358. CT: Greenwood Press. vol. p. Phaleas for advocating equality of property. 15-16. pp. But he did give the any property. farmers. was so He knew nothing about the influence of force and interest. Eng. p. pp. pp. 31. Burke's Despite their to define a realm of political existence cannot but remind one of Aristotle. 4. The mind and the disposition of the Sheriffs clearly character Burke writes A Vindication of Natural Society. but I think he emphasizes the aesthetic aspect of Burke's politics at the his political thought. reflections on progress see The Works of Edmund Burke (London: Bohn. 164. Burke's criticize the attempt to understand politics through abstract and mathematical criticisms of the legislative science of the revolution are Hippodamus' best regimes. 8. 1994]) argues that Burke's understanding of change was not informed by conservative opinions. In from looking to the number three for order. pp. Hippodamus models three. p. 7. Politics. 282-83. 382-84. 431. 101. 5. his regime on the number 12. 282-83. Reflections Revolution in France (Harmondsworth. pp. and by looking at the man. Works. 10. He he thought he was the first person ever to propose died in battle. and Aesthetics [Thousand Oaks. The faults of Hippodamus are the most important to both Aristotle damus only. and to Burke. In An Appeal from the New Revolution that it pretended to to the 11. although ment. and three kinds of legal suits. 2. The Complete Writ 1945]. Hippodamus failed to understand the nature of political order. vol. and wished to be learned in nature as a Hippodamus did his ambitious dress according to the different seasons. many other cities. he failed to understand the unique nature of on the politics. vol. 3. wore by cheap whole. be legitimate according to the laws 287-300. Nor did Hippodamus know He thought that instead of voting innocent or guilty. 364) and thus he could not For Burke's vol. Hippodamus thought that his and rulers would be popularly elected. remarkably similar to Aristotle's criticisms of Plato's. James Conniff (The Useful Cobbler: Edmund Burke State University of New York Press. attempt 8. Old Whigs. portrait. and the 7. There are three classes of citizens. they both ideas. Furthermore. Glorious 1984). Interpretation Paine thought that all hereditary government was ings of Thomas Paine [New York: Citadel Press. 350-52. remind one of the old man ed. Conniff finds him too cautious for not advocating vol. he denied and the artisans arms. Jackson Bate (Westport. This abound psychological account of the many political reasons that in the Reflections. 439. 533. Aristotle draws attention to the importance of Hippo calling him the first political scientist. 1854-89). vol. All references by to the Selected Writings of Edmund Burke. Edmund Burke. 2. 1. 1992]) argues that Burke's decisively determined by the fact that he was an Irish Burke fails to appreciate Catholic. artisans the military) would be loyal to and the city as a whole. a more participatory form vol. 520. CA: Sage. even though far removed political practice that who public assistance to the children of those it was a law in Athens anything about the nature of authority. vol. tyranny (Thomas Paine. Burke says that the genius of the of the old regime. Politics of Progress [Albany: 2. jurors and . and the 2. three sections of the city. therefore guaranteeing a military dictatorship. but by thoughtful considerations about the protection of liberty. and Hippodamus for his ambition and simplicity. and warm clothes in both the not winter and the summer.: Penguin. page number alone are 3. and Aristotle criticizes Plato for trying to make the city a unity. W. 431-32. ultimate differences. pp. 1960). Works. 94. 279. In desire to know nature as a whole. rather than his ideas Hippodamus was ambitious. of govern 3. independent farmers of the and that all the classes not (artisans. 1993]) argues that one must read Discourse of Vmue [Tuscaloosa: University of Burke as one would read a drama or look at a makes a similar expense of Stephen White (Modernity. was cited within the text as Reflections. he made the military the farmers by giving the army their own property. p. vol.

uses his understanding to support men of political prudence and virtue. for men of action are often. Thus. Canavan is for Burke life. When questioned. 1965]. of Chicago Press. Burke's emphasis on unsuspecting confidence. 294-95. 15. Strauss has in mind the realm of thought. in Strauss concerning Burke's understanding of providence. a person of actual virtue defend the presumptions against dangerous theory.149-52). Nugent (New York: Hafner Press. Williams ("Burkean Descriptions and And Political Representation: A Canadian Journal of Political representation can still serve overcome it. thus making an who improved the law. In the Spirit of the Laws.237). pp. 406-7. Mansfield's analysis of the difference between presumptive and actual virtue helps to clar of ify Burke's relation to political life pp. p. Canavan. according to their also proposed authoritative verdict impossible. find a standard of History [Chicago: University legitimacy through providence British constitution. susceptible of of infinite improvement. trans. Stanlis (Edmund Burke [New Brunswick. takes issue with Providence [Durham: Carolina Academic Press. pp. those presumptions must are Presumptive virtue rests on about justice. rather than action. he opposed a universal understanding of justice. is taken from Montesquieu. 13. case of the Edmund Burke [Chicago: presumptions University Chicago Press. 1.Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs should of Bristol 97 be able to vote in shades of grey. 151-53) law theorist in the tradition of St. 470. Works. 1987]. Thomas Aquinas. 1984]. March 1996) argues that Burke's understanding of virtual contemporary democracy by establishing confidence or trust between those who have been traditionally excluded from government.9-10). Like Burke. Montesquieu argues that the opinion of one's own security is the end of the law. natural right is an indepen dent principle that used as a standard for political 16. Works. 2. Frohnen (Virtue and the Prom ise of Conservatism [Lawrence: University of Kansas Press. Reappraisal. 348. NJ: Transaction Publishers. because understand on he thought the law that the was like the arts. According to and Leo Strauss (Natural Right attempt to another. pp. who lives according to the actual. not simply its evident usefulness. and actually increased the harshness of tyranny where it threatened authority but could not Melissa S. pp. because he thought it made prudence impossible. he is vulnerable to the problems connected to his providential god. 1991]. to hope against all odds in the heat of battle. He failed to and law is undermined by the habit changing it. 1949). 432. as opposed to natural rights. 77). against abstract doctrine. Science. vol. as in the French Revolution. p. Burke's one solves problem While Burke is able to anchor the and political only to pose life in general. p. 431. rather than the presumptive. that its authority depends habits of obedience. sanship. of Chicago Press. vol. . (Harvey Mansfield. Strauss claims understanding of prescription undermines the idea of noble defeat. 29. 224) a argues that prescription supports popular prejudice and thereby corrects parti There is tions of Burke and the very interesting and illuminating controversy between the natural law interpreta Straussian interpretation of Burke as a precursor to Hegel. vol." the ruling majority and 14. He honors for those individual judgement. The problem is that Burke's idea of fate could lead to or encourage philistinism outside of the that Burke's because it sanctions vulgar success and argues that deprives the law or natural mind of a standard dominant. 331-33. and even expected. 1993]. Harvey Mansfield (Statesmanship and Party Government [Chicago: University p. 1. and Canavan (Ed mund argue Burke: Prescription that Burke and is a natural particular. 6. 1954). vol. the man of actual virtue. pp.


" Preface. therefore. as it stands. the truth observation surface. . "deepest. presentation of this argument occurs less commonly observed that the in two waves. to interpret this drama. 289). but are inseparably It is joined. No. Vol." Part One origin and falls decisively in the "Night to break and the second rises from its the shoals of the Redemption" in "On of Self-Overcoming" with violence upon thought the eternal and return as Riddle" it is developed first in "On and "The Vision wave the and finally in "The Convalescent. but to those whom he "the wisest. Beyond Good Evil. In our efforts to do so it is useful to begin with the consideration that a drama is composed of two essential aspects.1 As readers of the book. 27) seems to The book that Nietzsche himself have considered his Thus Spoke Zarathustra. is fissure in what appears to only to those whose be a flawless on is keen enough to spot the of It is through the disruption the continuity of the apparent enter the level of the apparent that we are invited to new and strange and and into a deeper world that is that would otherwise be peculiar char sealed to us with seven seals (Beyond Good Evil. is a work that dramatizes the attempt of a man to we are called interpret upon the things themselves. The first crests at the end of Song. Fall 1998. New Orleans Next to the things themselves the the greatest what writings of the philosophers seem to pose works difficulties for interpretation. 5. Within their only clue offered to the things are never they seem and yet the discovery of what is is what seems to be. The acter of philosophical readers of his books . A genuinely philosophical book might to the golden bowl of revealed with some plausibility be of whose con compared stitution Henry James's novel. might writing led Nietzsche to give voice to the wish that be possessed of the philological equivalent of "the work gold smith's art offer his gratitude has nothing but delicate cautious in advance for some "subtlety of which and to do" and to interpretation" (Daybreak. It is generally recognized that Zarathustra presents an argument will according to which the essential core of all somewhat things is the to power. 26. . it is incoherent." In interpretation. In the second. 1 ." In the first Zarathustra's to unsuccessful attempt to transmit and forces him will to reflect upon this teaching his teaching to his disciples to realize that. and that in its composition these aspects are not merely parallel or complementary. Zarathustra offers a revised to his teaching regarding calls the power not disciples. argument and action.Interpreting the Twofold Presentation of the Will to Power Doctrine in Nietzsche's Thus Spoke Zarathustra Steven Berg Loyola University.

he is met with incredulity. demon strates the false character of that doctrine Four a as such and. This under persuading live. no mention is made of it in Parts Three read not and the work. In the light appeals and of this failure Zarathustra upon a novel strat- prudently further such direct fastens . like the be merely a superficial or partial aspect of his thought. Zarathustra will relinquish his than superhuman status by going down to ignorant men and distributing man his wisdom to them. however. he and wishes to "go down" to again. therefore. Overburdened by its superfluity. Nietzsche's philosophy looks less "post-modern" precursor of Heideggerian existentialism or tionism and more like an attempt in the wake of German Idealism to philosophy to its portrait of a genuine core: Socratic or Platonic thought. much passes for the core of Nietzsche's philosophy.3 At the opening of the work it is made clear that Zarathustra not only takes himself to be wise." But this his means "to be again.4 If Zarathustra is human. It." man since more man by his lack of wisdom or ignorance." 8). of Thus when Nietzsche's utterances Zarathustra is through which simply as collection Zarathustrian Nietzsche gives voice to understood his own opinions. is directed to to go so that the superman renewal of this condition would have to find its source in the confirmation of his wisdom. therefore. It seems that Zarathustra to will somehow attempt to confirm his wisdom through its distribution.." men in order to distribute his wisdom thereby "become empty is defined dead.100 Interpretation to response his invitation to "seriously the test" "wisest. According to one auditor of his speeches he is lucky to have escaped with his life ("Zarathustra's eschews all Prologue. he is not a god: part of his wisdom is his knowledge that "god is He is. the will to power proves to doctrine. however. e. his first distribute his wisdom to men is an utter failure. Nowhere is this other than a more apparent than in Thus Spoke Zarathustra: the book is nothing in the original thinker's progress from self-proclaimed wise man or dogmatist to sceptical philosopher Socratic sense. one of these version of a man called Truthsayer. but as such to be more than human. however. the superman. Zarathustra relinquishes his superhuman status may then only ultimately to renew or reconfirm it. insights the articulate the kernel of what comes return. then the distribution." this account. of accordingly. As it is attempt presented in "Zarathustra's Prologue.g." however. Once deconstrucreturn its deeper levels are taken sight of. If it is primarily the fact that he is wise rather than ignorant that accounts for his superhuman condition.2 to fruition in Zarathustra's as thought of the a eternal This thought demonstrates to Zarathustra in takes as final way the false character of his supposed wisdom which its first principle the doctrine of the will to power. thinks through this revised Zarathustra's The Truth- teaching further ecy" than Zarathustra the essential has himself and reveals to him in a "proph (Weissagung) sayer's mind incoherence still nested at its core. but as a drama in of the which each speech round may be only in the light deeds that sur it and of what its necessary place within a sequential order of presentation. ridicule and hatred. Appealing directly to the multitude.

" or power over neighbors meaning various creation of all victory "the high. including his soul and mind. he insists. Zarathustra proceeds with As the narrative unfolds and his attempt to initiate his disciples into his teaching. as Zarathustra calls him. however. will then turn their efforts to shaping humanity in such a way -as to prepare it to embrace Zara thustra's teaching and its final end." 9). the It is the of the creator that brings the law into being and." Here he that if be made to speak." character of his alleged wisdom becomes of possession of a causal own knowledge principle "all including is the the being of his knowing. root cause of all the will to power is the things. "On the Thousand authoritative speeches of the and One Zarathustra makes the claim that the speeches about good and evil on all men's lips are derived from the follow laws of various peoples: and evil Greeks. in accordance with its law. the apparent: he believes that he is in being. Behind the creator. The understanding and interpretation of interpret the speeches of that one being among speaking believe it being or. Since the of about good and evil are derived from the laws the various political commu nities.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra egy: -101 he will make a new beginning by transmitting his wisdom to a cadre of handpicked disciples who." "will to for the first time. Thus whatever allows a and victory or power over itself. power" In that speech of Part One in he ploys the term Goals. the measure and the What Zarathustra believes he has discovered through his good and and whatever allows it to gain it calls examination of the speeches of the legislators or creators as embodied in their laws is that is the will at the origin and the end of the activity of legislation or to power. since. the life of the superman ("Zarathustra's Prologue. law. "On the is to be interpreted or understood it to as man. . Persians. The first of this wisdom will to power. this activity is directed to sustaining people of which the people to gain legislator or creator expanding the power of the is the founder. which those speeches are first and foremost concerned to articulate not what is being. speaks to man only being." holy. the first. its things. calls "praiseworthy. despite their variety. require that beings who speaks: man the rational animal. agree in articulating an understanding evil as identical to virtue and vice. one Afterworldsmen. Jews because all and Germans all speak differently about good speeches and are formed by different laws. therefore. acting in the light of its truth. the people. em but rather what good and evil. Zarathustra does knowledge of not possible to gain an immediate access to since being is through examining the speeches of human beings. activity stands the legislator or. That is to say. all of of good and them. the good for man is understood by the law to be convertible with moral virtue. the Still. Zarathustra's presented argument for the truth of his first principle as of in the speech that marks the beginning must attempt genuinely first is to transmit his reasons wisdom being his disciples. according to Zara thustra. according to Zarathustra's understanding. But being. in the Aristotelian phrase.

" nations" among its brotherhood of equals. to creating creators. insofar as he takes the paradigmatically human speech to be the authoritative speeches of the law. perhaps. It is this than human. divine. The indefinite or through plurality of peoples can be given definition if Zarathustra how impose a finitude upon this plurality and then bind this finite unlimited peoples together can some number of into a genuine whole by directing each and every one of them to a single humanity itself. To create great endeavor. That the related political and aspects of claim. their legislation will also be the first to have been articulated in the . Zarathustra. therefore. however. as an expression of the indefi Zarathustra human. that "humanity it plasticity self or in the proper sense does not in fact exist. man the speaking linked to their root man the political being and that both aspects of man's being is necessarily humanity find the rational an uncontroversial an he calls the will are to power. Zarathustra to wish to establish not simply a link. indicates. to an key understanding of the and human and taken the of human as the key to an understand ing of being in the light the potentially infinite this number of particular will peoples and laws has plastic or concluded that the human at its core. in his farewell speech to his disciples Zarathustra looks forward to a superlegislation future in which his friends. At the close of Part One. overarching then. directed to producing a determinate number of subordinate legislations or. is at one and new teaching in the time the distribu as tion of wisdom and the promulgation of a law. the to power. it were.102 We Interpretation see that. however. therefore. that he cities of men. The only thing that seems to fracture identity is the variety of such speeches or the multiplicity Zarathustra himself has taken these laws and their multiplicity as the this of laws. in Zarathustra's own words. as it were. but identity between them. nite laws.5 But then Zarathustra's perspective of own speech about the beings itself transcends the his transcendence that marks wisdom as more any particular law. according in what to Zarathustra. As both the laws of his fellow creators and his own law of laws will be the first to have been constructed on the foundation of a full recognition of the truth of the law as rooted in the creative will or the will to power. This new "light to the will itself recognize Zarathustra as the source of its light and. is indefinitely being of infinitely malleable and that is simply a reflection of the essential being of all beings. law that is. believes of peoples and of the possible The indefinite plurality it to produce or create humanity itself on the level of the political transforming his transcendent or superhuman wisdom into a novel and comprehensive moral law. believes. standing above and ruling a humanity they have helped to fashion. is Zarathustra's goal. but rather fellow creators. human beings seems necessarily is. will have become the founders of a finite number of novel peoples and will themselves form what Zarathustra calls "a new chosen ("On the Giving 2). a law that is. first no people" the successful completion of this promulgation. the coming to be of the superman. to a Virtue. longer disciples. It is with this end in view has descended from his his mountain solitude to offer his the same a That teaching.

It will be a legislation in perfect accord with man nature of and man man's things or. by and made of same means his happiness made ("Zarathustra's Prologue. this his account of the core of all beings as will to power and as indefinitely since plastic. but teaching as from Zarathustra's speech of command own teaching. in celebrating the feast of this new epiphany or. it and as well. How he We can answer this question if we recall that Zarathustra's like himself is incumbent upon the successful effort to create another sion of transmis to his wisdom or teaching to his disciples. In acknowledging the transcendant superiority kind will at the same time acknowledge the justice of the Zarathustra new law he has laid the legitimate down. and the perfection of his wisdom will coincide with its successful trans mission or with the successful legislation have been of of his law of laws. At this culminating moment hind his veil. But the freedom his disciples are obliged to achieve it requires not only that the understanding of they liberate themselves from their former prejudices or good and evil instilled in their minds by the old law. in of that the final a Part One Zarathustra to his disciples to offers as the last injunction themselves" teaching that reject "find in order they may ultimately become his equals. will creators." 3). Zarathustra for his first step from be true and mankind prepared advent as the divinity with calls or the highest embodiment of the his fellow creators it. the superhuman creator over his human creatures. rule of a justice that is identical to a certain form of inequality. a natural law. simultaneously confirm the truth of his wis condition. If Zarathustra's disciples are to fulfill this command to freedom it would seem that they must proceed in one of two ways: they may either reject teach- his teaching while lacking a sufficient understanding of the truth of that . The of his knowledge have become of coextensive with the horizon the law. But Zara these thustra identifies the have perfect possession will of wisdom with secured happiness. friends and fellow creators ("On the Giving Virtue. the authenticity of his superhuman if he is indeed able to make another like himself or confirm That is to say. as it were. as he At the moment of the Great Noon man will no principle of all join longer is the between animal and god. Zarathustra will. Through it the political animal the rational animal will have been seamlessly joined and the law and made one. create dom and. but animal gods are and superman. a He will his knowledge is being perfectly legal a himself blissful horizon divinity of who at the same time will philosopher-king will kings. reveal himself to a his career. therefore." things.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra light of 103 the the truth of being. This teaching is is engineered produce within them the freedom of mind and will prerequisite to the activity of comprehensive: creation. saying that Zarathustra fails in this endeavor. humanity being If he is itself into successful for the in his endeavor. since mankind as a whole will recognize that "all of dead" and that Zarathustra himself living and incarnate truth the novel superhuman ideal ("On the of Giving man Virtue. "the Great stand Noon." 3)." 1). Accordingly. while bringing humanity first time. It almost goes without fails is the question.

of with the particular enemy claims a he here confronts. wholly not abstracts from the fact that the wishes child of reveal the dream expressly asks Zarathustra to look at himself: he to to Zarathustra something about on author of that teaching. appears independent inquiries. By the seventh speech of Part Two ("On the Tarantulas"). on the basis of their own or ate this truth for themselves. That Zarathustra is himself aware the implications of his encounter with the Tarantula is made clear in the first three songs which punctuate the close of the Song. It is not or while he takes to be the distortions enough then that sufficient his disciples knowledge of reject his teaching in they a distorted form it rather lacking its truth. however. the distribution of his author."6 Zarathustra interprets this dream enemies and ence his teaching has been distorted signifying that have grown ashamed of their his disciples consequently that by his adher to it. to be absurd. he henceforth they now bids last sufficiently prepared his friends for this rejection. What this incident another is that Zarathustra's attempt to make at like himself. Neverthless. The venom of the Tarantula is his doctrine justice ity at the center of which. that the to pave the of teaching he believes to be a path to will instead prove way to enslavement and self-enslavement. lies the desire for suggests This doctrine is. they may appropri they may reject it in full awareness of its truth." victory over he bites him of and infects him as equal revenge. In "The Child which a child his disciples. has itself in its the core the same vengeful passion that Zarathustra identifies manifests as the source of what teaching of the preachers of sickness" calls "the turning and equality and that "the tyrant liberation he madness. This interpretation. however. must accomplish pre teaching force them into Song" an all too human bondage to its lover": it "The Night of a expresses an intense desire . rushes his teaching. of course. them to become his enemies and suggests that from another." of first half his of Part Two." "divinely strive against one At the same or moment. the Zarathustra as "Tarantula" "preacher equality. of latter. of course. Nonetheless.104 Interpretation so ing The that. his venom. it is precisely what made clear at the awakes at Zarathustra demands Two. but about himself as the the basis of his inadequate understand mountain retreat ing of the dream. as Zarathustra has argued. "The Night In this song Zarathustra which opposite of what offers a portrait of own activity of creation in its fulfillment cisely the demonstrates that it is this supposed to effect: of mind disciples a more than will human freedom is "the song activity far from producing in his and will. must reject in full awareness of what it is they are rejecting." Zarathustra seems to believe that he has at Consequently. What and grotesque of a devil. which marks the cul mination of a series of engagements with his "enemies. to create his equals in the form of fellow creators. This is the Mirror" opening within of Part in with Zarathustra from a nightmare he sees holds up a mirror there is the "mocking as and asks him to look mask himself it. Zarathustra and down from his of what to rejoin his disciples practiced upon purify his teaching it by his foes." in other words. opposed to Zarathustra's own doctrine of justice as inequality.

In order for Zarathustra's disciples to become fellow creators. which reveals Zarathustra to be the legislator of his reject own supposed self-legislation. Moreover. has its motive not wisdom and thereby his superhuman simply a desire to confirm his but moreover a longing to share condition. dependency disciples' upon or subordinate status to the will of an Thus the truth of Zarathustra's teaching. but by the falsehood of their willful ignorance. that his understanding of the just political order is incoherent insofar as the essential character of its ruling peak would of neces this ruling peak itself. and this is men. disciples and. that is. but infe who will always fall short of his own perfection. fellow creators and wise instead result in one of two remain his disciples may returning equally unsatisfactory situations. dependent position as disciples and attempt to become in their own autonomous creators right. But precisely in such rejection they obey the final command of. On the other hand. this condition with another. that is. and adhere to and fulfill this teaching. Creation. consequently. made clear through stands following reflection. prove incapable either of or even of they may reject their properly receiving the gifts of his love. If they are to become his equals in creation they must reject that teaching in full awareness of its truth.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra 105 that (Begierde) ate another to give and receive love effort to with perfect mutuality. they must liberate above oneself as one's it. is under in pursuing the their own independent activity of creation. as through such distribution cre like himself. is perfectly self-sufficient self-legislation or one's own will their wills from any other. therefore. therefore. they may transform themselves able neither to cannot from friends into accept enemies of Zarathustra and. That his disciples but fail in their his enemies efforts to free themselves from Zarathustra's tutelage by becoming however. be his love nor to offer love to him in return. On the one hand. the com incoherent in its own terms. as Zarathustra setting up only law ("On the Way of the Creator"). to establish a community of and reciprocity. requires that they his teaching as an external determination upon their wills. And in creating while rejecting the true teaching of creation they are determined not by the truth of the will alone. and It thus reveals Zarathustra's distribute his wisdom. It . friendship and love read on a basis of perfect of equality When "The Night clear Song" is in the light "On the Tarantulas" it becomes that Zarathustra's equality in love relations indicates that his longing for love has been infected with the desire for justice as understood by the preachers insistence upon absolute of equality and. Thus Zarathustra's only disciples' attempts to achieve an equality with their master serve to confirm their inferiority and to him in terms of both will knowledge and the freedom of the will. The distribution of his wisdom create not equals capable of rior creatures of his will properly receiving returning his love. therefore. munity is now apparent to Zarathustra. In attempting to liberate their wills from subordination so all to the will of another they subordinate themselves to the will of Zarathustra. for he has come to perceive that the teaching he took to be the proper means to establish this perfectly reciprocal love must sity violate of its fundamental principle.

Yet that thus be impossible in its of This impossibility law. rather than confirming his happiness or bliss.106 Interpretation be impossible for Zarathustra to create another proves to proves to like himself because it be impossible love. The dominant passion of the preachers of equality. compatible with the moral law insofar tue. demonstrates the incoherence of Zarathustra's Given the fact that the and his wisdom was to be identical its promulgation as will considering that the starting point of that legislation end the enjoyment of is the to power and its of love. dancing of a group of "lovely wisdom. Zarathustra's attempt to combine jus perfectly reciprocal tice and love. Through wished to pro- his legislation and the transmission of .7 either to command another to be free or to will a Consequently. and his speech is no longer girls" In the song that he sings with "the little god portrays himself as the inept lover of two ladies by the names of Life and Wisdom. wisdom. he is in useful a state of aporia. way to an in its turn to a envy of those to whom he distributes such gifts and this envy spiteful desire to afflict them with the pain of the longing that he himself expe unsatisfied Zarathustra's longing to receive the gifts of love will give riences: he will take revenge upon them by withholding his gifts from them and thereby making his superfluity. with his wisdom. will supplant the for love his the perfection of Zarathustra's giving or creation proves to be at the same its undoing. the punishment or desire for soul. confesses that this he In no longer knows where he is or how to go forward. consequently. review order to articulate the structure of this aporia it is to the progress of Zarathustra's thought in the his wisdom following Zarathustra terms.8 ignorance what after by In this song he makes manifest his knowledge of his own describing how he falls into perplexity when trying to fathom "thirsts" he takes to be Life's boundless depths and. self-sufficient a them aware of their own poverty and dependence in relation to He will put them to shame. and Having failed in his with effort to unite to freedom with friendship justice love he will succumb desire to punish his disciples for the inferiority longing and incapacity within of which he is Thus time the cause. it is his seems to follow that central to the incoherence Zarathustra's wisdom assumption that in its highest expression love is as the former finds its source perfectly in and is ultimately identical to the self-legislating will. ("On the Giving Vir 1). As he puts giving. my virtue grew it in "The Night Song": "my happiness in giving died in tired of itself in its overflow. will produce in his relations to his recalcitrantly inferior disciples the sad passions of envy." Through its distribution Zarathustra distribution distribution proves to sought to confirm own terms. and the desire for revenge within his soul. how he the seductive and veiled figure of Lady Wisdom who persistently In an extended series of questions at the end of eludes speech his he gaze and grasp. As "The Night Song" predicts. but by self-mockery. revenge." Consequently pedantry. spite." By false terized "The Dance Song" of Part Two Zarathustra has become aware of the charac character of his by bombast he to accompany the Cupido.

that false horizon now of the is. therefore. in "The Grave attempts follow he of to resolve his perplexity by jettisoning both his understanding understanding and the political good. He man as political and man as rational and distinguishes sharply between concludes that the only genuine good is a transpolitical good. the word "philoso por phy" nowhere appears within the speeches of Zarathustra. ing and The rational good and the political good were to be made to coincide through the rale of the wise creator over his creatures. His understanding of the good overcoming of need thus divided into the beautiful as the perfectly recip love of the wise for the wise and the just as the structure of an overarch final political order. He cannot painful beyond endurance. or that love is incompatible with the self-legislating freedom of the will. since.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra vide a comprehensive solution or 107 to the human problem. and the good. the In doing so he considers himself to have stepped beyond the limitations of the political realm. of the rational good. As he reveals at the close of "The Dance Song. in his his newly won awareness of his the ignorance because he finds perplexity into which he has been thrown he misses the mark. elaborating of the beautiful. all human community established upon the basis of the law. What Nietzsche suggests in "The Dance is that the inco Song" herence human need as of Zarathustra's wisdom points of need away from an understanding of the good as the knowledge overcoming of ignorance (cf. from the perfect possession of speeches that beginning. Though in his trayal in a dialogue with his beloved Life of his unsatisfied thirst for and ongoing suit.9 standing of the good points to the life devoted to the love dom in erotic community through speech: it points to In significant contrast to all of Nietzsche's other works. therefore. The in wisdom and toward the awareness of self-contradictory nature of Zarathustra's Gay Science. 381). in which the just is included as false appearance. and that. to secure the good happiness for his fellows with and himself. pursuit of Wisdom Zarathustra comes close of a to the ophy and. He that good to be coinci dent the overcoming would of human both the final rational and the political levels: ignorance political orders be replaced by knowledge and all partial and transitory its ruling by one that is comprehensive and and that had as peak the as the rocal loving community of creator-wise men. the just as final political order. the rule of the creator over his creatures to the advantage of both is impossible. and his beautiful as the loving community of the believes to be a new extramoral account what he instead wise. Thus if in Part . he has identified perfect happiness with the and the two wisdom. That is to say. that understood need on is. Accordingly. to the career own desirability life informed of the discovery of philos by the love and pur at this point rather than the possession of knowledge sustain good." he cannot understand his life to be worth living if he cannot believe himself to be Song" wise. But Zarathustra's understanding came to ruin when he realized that friendship or love in the highest sense is incompatible with the justice of the political realm. the morally or legally determined under and pursuit of wis philosophy. and to have ascended to the naked truth of things.

knowledge that his stands beyond good and in the moral Zarathustra exchanges refuted moral wisdom he understands to be a new amoral wisdom and wise thereby permits himself to the persist in the belief that he is principle of and. control of The failure of be brought completely under the the distribution of Zarathustra's wisdom to to . his difficulties or not upon his own dis longing on the for "purity" "cleanliness" perfection and (Reinheit [see upon "On the Tree Mountainside" and "On the Rabble"]). His creation was supposed to guarantee both "eternity" the perfection and of his love. however. Nevertheless. the longing for revenge. and however. In other words. that is.g. for having corrupted the souls of those he loved best spite. quickly devolves into to an he pretends to discover the cause of the transience of his youthful love in the "rabble" efforts of his destroy him. fundamental doctrine ple of both his He original and his revised teachings remains the of the will to power. consequently. the conditions of possi bility and his his actual enjoyment of will." both his life his wisdom at the end of "The Grave "The Grave Island in Song" opens as Zarathustra retreats to the solitude of the Grave youth. but of itself personified as a malevolent host assembled to oppose and thwart vulgarity him in his endeavors. Zarathustra's primary opponents. Zarathustra blames his failures position.. Zarathustra's la angry accusation as mentation." it becomes clear that up behind Zarathustra's days over the silent graves of his "best perfectly love that longing for a mutual love lay a nostalgic desire to in the recapture and perfect a species of of he knew but all too briefly sunnier the playful intercourse of "blissful minds" his youth. order to lay a wreath upon the tomb of the lost loves of his In the course of the lamentations he offers loved dead.108 One Interpretation and the first half of Part Two Zarathustra his moral attempted to enclose the sun of knowledge pretends within the cave of law. happy. It seems then that the recapture the distribution Zarathustra's in his wisdom was youth and designed both to believes to be ful love that he experienced of to overturn the political and "spiritual" dominance polluted the the vulgar majority that he or well of responsible for having fountain his youth joy in and desire for life. and reaffirms the will to power as the first princi Song. a love expressed in (seligen Geister). and his revulsion before and the low extinguished his love. rabble who are those whom the Tarantulas or preachers of equality serve: the of vulgar or well or the great majority fountain human beings. in the second half of Part Two he to have liberated himself entirely from the cave of the law and to have for ascended evil what into the light of the sun of a sense. envy. and by infecting them with the vulgar or base passions of. That is love were to say. "enemies" however. It is the of have his it "poisoned" the (Borne) life for Zarathustra by bringing youthful loves to a premature terminus presence of ("On the Rabble"). As is his habit. e. was the lingering he the low or the vulgar within the souls of those whom Zarathustra youth loved in his that brought the association between them to an end: even could not stomach the persistent presence of the low that he discovered in the highest form of this link between the high intercourse between human beings.

Be that it may.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra effect 109 this unification of love and will was made evident own soul with the passions of envy. must be to the status of a transitory and so false fabrication infinite of the will to power. Zarathustra thus replaces his dogmatic moral wis dom with an amoral skeptical wisdom that nevertheless remains grounded of the will fundamental dogma to power." creative It is identical to the creation of values as an ongoing activity or to the ever-renewed . manifests itself in an infinite becoming. after to serve rein the cornerstone of his wisdom only having been extensively terpreted in the light speech of the collapse of his original understanding. in expressing its or unlimited character. He adopts a dogmatic skepticism. His cannot skepticism extends to all supposedly final knowledge. For the will." again and soon and. therefore. One but wonder whether this new skeptical cate teaching regarding the will to power of so does not impli as itself in its own critique of all comprehensive accounts of being. as well as relegated teaching concerning limited and any particular teaching now regarding the character of being. spite." indefinite plurality or virtue and all of its creations that he originally sought to limit. ing") Zarathustra his revised version of the will No longer addressing himself to his disciples.10 At the end of this same speech Zarathustra offers his new extramoral ac count of the good. but to those whom he calls "you he now embraces precisely the unlimited character of the will and the wisest. "the good. and the of the by the infection of his longing for revenge. His own others disgust and indignation before the traces be low that he detects in In fact it thus itself appear to an expression of this same vulgarity. he says is. In the immediately following articulates "The Grave Song" ("On Self-Overcom to power doctrine. and indignation that have led to the premature deaths his loves. but perpetually limitations upon its own activity. In doing so go of rest he lays to as the as his desire for love good. Without himself being aware of it. "whatever I oppose how I love it rooted I have to it and my love: thus my win will have it. The greatest good. Zarathustra baptizes the name this revised understanding that in secret the will to power with "self-overcoming" and claims doing the words in which overcome ever much life itself revealed its he is merely echoing to him: "I am that which must create and itself again. however. As a conse good and evil quence. he realizes. in the infinite power of the will. seems of to be this disgust youthful enemy. It is a protean mon must not that hides its essential indeterminacy in the ceaseless production of false in his and ephemeral appearances." Life. and resurrects the creative activity of the can continue will highest The will to power doctrine. Zarathustra is his a paroxysm of own worst It is only over after he has of whipped himself up into perpetrated indignation the "murder" his loves allegedly by his foes that Zarathustra lets as his perplexity and once again fastens upon the will to power doctrine the means to his salvation and the foundation of his knowledge. destroy ster such self-created only perpetually create. he also concludes that any particular vice.

." self-concealing above cre beautiful moral ideals." 2). ascended from the plurality of accounts of moral virtue morality. Zarathustra is understanding and a now able to distinguish between a of good and (false) evil. will's creation of values as the greatest good is extra-moral and in charac ter and those values themselves or the moral law a beautiful concealing falsehood. the self-sufficient freedom at the expense of the enslavement of everyone else. for. as the highest good. the false perspective of the moral law.110 Interpretation of fabrication transitory teachings of good and evil as virtue and vice. of course. It is. in clinging to his its freedom. then Zarathustra must hence his disciples and mankind his wisdom. as a whole through the transmission of Consequently. through the examination of the laws the various peoples. from opposites." as a "still sea" whose calls riddling surface hides "impenetrable of the The infinite. If the creation of values requires the legislation morality." he describes himself depths. he no longer considers honesty to be the best policy and turns to concealment and prudential irony in the presentation of his thought: at the opening of his speech "On the Sublime. must veil itself in the false the appearances of wholeness and com pleteness of the moral ation of beautiful. As he puts it at the end of behind the serious or heroic moral virtue of the superman as the paradigm of the highest life lies the Nietzsche himself secret playful appears to ness of what scribe he now calls the "superhero. virtue and vice are immiscible Zarathustra originally thought of that he had. Ecce with all that was Homo. "Thus Spake Zarathustra." as a form of artful play. will's "sublime" character good. Zarathustra describes it "On the Sublime. necessarily the greatest evil. wisdom and will and And. . the destruction of values. destruction of values as its Accordingly. necessarily imprisons the Thus Zarathustra of mind and will those upon whom he imposes his creation. that moral has compelled him to distinguish the the good from virtue. he . to the one true He now understands himself to have ascended and from the plurality of moral virtues to the truth of the good as distinct from the source of moral virtue and its plurality. naively (The Gay Science. the possession of wisdom."" de Zarathustra's of new paradigm of the highest life in the . his desire for happiness as he understands it. which he has come to identify of a with beautiful. it follows that the genuine of the good as understanding moral inseparable from evil is incompatible virtue and with the understanding of good and evil as identical to vice. himself to purchasing his its first principle. But the ceaseless creation of values requires the ceaseless precondition. the false char acter of which is fully recognized by forth renounce any desire to enlighten the minds of its creator. the creation of values. But the "values. entails moral (true) extramoral understanding He argues that since the greatest good. law or or as he it there. 382. or itself stands the gloomy seriousness of those ideals. it follows minds and wills of now resigns that the wise man must remain since the creation of values that liberates his will solitary in his activity. good untouchable. Gay Science when he speaks "the ideal of a mind who plays divine" hitherto If the called holy.

Zarathustra of attempts to demolish the tradition he confronts.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra renounces -111 his longing for love such or for genuine community are a with another like himself and denies that love and happiness. never given a proper sayer comes but is simply called "the to understand is that Zarathustra's attempt to of Truthsayer. These of a new Zarathustrian tradition that will ultimately provide for the coming into the being of a new creator." up As he the men of the present and turns his attention to producing "chil proclaims in "On the Land Education. its fundamental incoherence. think through. anew out use the rains he has as Zarathustra." as he calls it. the undiscovered in the furthest sea: after it I call my sails to seek and to seek. however. one fers his revised account of the will to of the "wisest" to whom Zarathustra of power responds to his invitation to "seri his ously interprets them test" "word. Plato. and. of another like himself. with caution and of subtlety." He will produce his "children" or reproduce men within men will his own activity in of another through convincing the highest the political community then become the bearers the conditions the truth of his false moral teaching. in some indefinite future. the beautiful becomes a kind of rase through which the 206a. therefore. The reproduction of the good is guaranteed (cf. to the end of reproduc words. Zarathustra In other gives dren. is now understood by and from the intercourse radically of one human mind with another. the realm of ing the life that is free on and slavery and informed by the of falsehood. Symposium reproduction of his own good. comes to understand the implications self.207a). This fellow thinker is name within the work. He will attempt to direct the sense with another human being. He listens carefully to these speeches. as a means not only to realizing the freedom of his will. he values the admittedly political community. demolish it. his old moral teaching. and create engendered. help lower level than his The reason for this . this second Zarathustra will penetrate as as riddling surface of the regnant Zarathustrian teaching. but ultimately to the generation. Zarathustra to be ultimately detached It is identical to the self-sufficient knowledge freedom of the will of the wise and solitary creator of values. As in the case of sexual intercourse.12 Yet if he has false renounced community necessary his desire for living together in the highest condition of still wishes to employ the promulgation of he has created." What the Truth his initial transcend understanding must of not the just political order by reducing the political realm to a mere means to the reproduction of his own necessity fail. in new doing so. It creating on a will fail because each of activity in the person of another Zarathustra's successors can predecessor. As we have already observed." "now I love only my children's land. Zarathustra himself has done. now wishes to the beautiful a means to "procreation" ("On Immaculate Knowledge") or the activity in the person of another. Zarathustra's Nietzsche indicates this fact way as to such a lead the reader by initially teaching better than Zarathustra does him presenting the words of the Truthsayer in to infer that they are the words of Zarathustra ("The Truthsayer"). truth.

" climate in which "the best grow tired of their works" "harvested" after having predominate or the multitude of vulgar "rotten fruit" and.. It is only by thinking through the incoherence and impos Zarathustra's beautiful and false account of the best regime and its one justice that may ascend direcdy beyond the falsehood of the politi cal realm to the peak of knowledge of the good. his own efforts at through the transmission of a enervation and paralysis of reproducing the life of the creator Zarathustrian tradition must finally result in an the will. Zarathustra the Third. The implication seems to difficulties that the Truthsayer has foreseen. then do so if he attains to Zarathustra's level in knowledge he cannot in his best creation of values: regime he found his own teaching on an account of the that he at own new tradition must have has himself demolished. despite the in some to this region of the dead. therefore."13 It is the low despair point of this necessary future in which those process of decline that the prophecy with of will the Truthsayer predicts: a over the capacity to create the vanity of consequently succumb to the belief that "everything is empty. the high point of Zarathustra's best moral teaching. in his dream Zarathustra sees that. bursts open. will exist on a still lower level and not only in terms of creation. of Zarathustra's his successor cannot. During his draw the col experiences a second nightmare in which he seems to appro lessons from the Truthsayer's He is the prophecy.14 have been handed over to the ignorant Zarathustra is laid low lapse he priate by the "prophecy" of the Truthsayer. but rather a all efforts of creation and was.. self-overcoming that begins from the which has at its center his account he to be the in speech of the political order or regime. however. in which "shallow swamps" reins of political rule men. Consequently. become the "night-watchman death.112* Interpretation as decline is sibility perfect of follows. must initiate a process of decline of what considers worst that will end in the realization in deed political order or regime: the rule of the "rabble. the Truthsayer foresees that Zarathustra will engender not a second Zarathustra. serve as a vehicle for the reproduction of own activity: his own successor. but in terms of knowledge as well. and regurgitates an odd assort images of resurrected life. everything is one. the conclusion of his dream that the Truthsayer has appears to offer a suggestion as uncovered can entrance ment of to how the difficulty be resolved: a black coffin appears in the gateway that is the be that. In words. his its core an account of the just political regime cave of the political realm and that is on a lower plane than that of Zarathustra." and grave-watchman on the hill and fortress of guardian of other life that has been "overcome" that lies in as coffins around him. This second Zarathustra will be obliged to seal off the exit from the its false The cre beliefs ation that Zarathustra's account of the best regime had opened up. just the prophet had predicted. In his dream Zarathustra has . therefore. as it were. the future continues way . Thus. Nevertheless. If Zarathustra's successor must destroy cannot the Zarathustrian tradition even in order to clear the way for the creation of his own. everything That is to say.

namely." will Truthsayer posed responds to Zarathustra's ostensible solution to the problem he has for him. if any one necessity fall under one of a among the infinite finite number of kinds regime.2). the series of tradi follow in their decline and renewal a necessary and need course. the Machiavelli.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra - 1 13 to hold out the promise of a reprisal or recapitulation of the high point of the activity of the will that Zarathustra's when own creation represents. is the causal principle of number of of those peoples. however. at least at this point. This insight is cause. all of them fall under one or infinite the variety of particular peoples may another of a strictly limited number of possible regimes (see note 5). From this low point. Zarathustra traces this circular at trajectory will as willing the point in the discourse which following teaching in "The of Truthsayer" ("On Redemption") in he speaks of his own the liberator and then follows this with an account of the decline of the will "madness" from this height in it seeks to annul several stages to the nadir of the will's which we or return once itself in willing not-willing. highest good has been bought in his at the price of or unlimited of his understanding The latter according to will of the will to power as was grounded infinite in its proposition analysis the political things which the potentially infinite variety of peoples implied the corresponding infinitude of that which to power. Nietzsche does not afford us this pleasure. to say to Zarathustra at the meal they by the speech of Part Three realize entitled "On the Vision and the Riddle. Zarathustra. If. the peoples must of Yet. Much as we would like to know how the lieves the difficulties the Truthsayer "drowned. Zarathustra only will this repetition or recur will as in order to once again secure the self-sufficient activity of the the final cause of the becoming of the political community (cf. when combined with seems to suggest that a initially encouraging to Zarathustra be his understanding of the will as self-overcoming. not to willing all of the past. then." Zarathustra has the come to that the apparent salvation of his revised ac count of the will to power as the perdition of creativity. that the finite process of decline in the creations of the will the Truthsayer predicts cal regimes or implies a similar finitude in regard to the kinds of politi that no matter how be. By willing will's his own superior existence as of the inevitable in this way he would reproduce the highest good. . Whatever the Truthsayer may have had shared. The suggestion that Zarathustra immediately following seems this account that the will must learn to "will in its backwards" to refer. of therefore. Dis courses on Livy. but to willing this willing. it finite process of decline in political orders must inevita bly be followed by an tions and regimes were to predictable circular rence opposing process of renewal. 1. circular process of the ascent and decline of the will Willing this circular recurrence of is the be "sea" in which Zarathustra be He apparently shares his new insight with the Truthsayer at the dinner party to which he invites him immediately following his recovery. recovers he appears to fathom the full significance his that dream. more to Zarathustra's own teaching that "the will is a height from which we creator" ascend to the makes began.

eternal return of .114- Interpretation his doctrine that at the core of all then Zarathustra must reconsider unlimited power. in which it may be willed. however. . but every stone that is thrown .' "My day-wisdom mocks all 'infinite worlds. there number politi becomes master: Zarathustra thus discovers that the or cal problem has certain implications for cosmology about the whole that that the problem of jus tice and its relation to the beautiful and the good points to the problem of the order of the whole. the to power as highest good transforms itself into the best causal principle of a be both beautiful in its wholeness and just in the riddle relations of its parts insofar as the rule of the within prevails within it. he now concludes that the circular recurrence of finite finite same. "dwarf" the "mind of of wisdom! fall!" who mocks You have thrown yourself you stone him. saying. In of the whole of things and first cause of it wills its own will or becomes self-caused. one when Zarathustra asks him whether the paths of the future that stretch out "contradict" moment in contrary directions from the gateway of the another eternally. cosmological whole that appears to By willing the recurrence of all things." mological and necessitarian version of the thought of the eternal return: truth is crooked. the dwarf replies with the cos "all circle.' 'Where force (Kraft) is. the first cause own willing: recurrence of all things. that the liberation through acts of creation or by becoming cause: will can achieve genuine a truly autonomous recurrence if the cosmological order is defined a by a necessary of all things. "O Zarathustra high. That there are problems lurking Zarathustra's apparent solution to the presented by the eternal return of the same is made clear at the end of . seems fundamentally teaching first concerning the freedom of the will. being is an Accordingly. The truth Zarathustra believes himself to undermine his to have discovered. the As he says in "On the Three Evils": For my wisdom it has more says: "" force. time itself is sees a Zarathustra. . regimes implies a circular recurrence on the cosmological scale or that a power at the core of all being must give rise to the . however. since if he cannot will the past in such a future as his own creation. then the creation or represented will can never be first cause and there can be no genuine liberty in this sense. according the Zarathustra's current understanding. namely. implies the that the recurrence of the past and the future recurrence of the moment in which the eternal return is known and. its to necessity by willing the eternal as it were. therefore. must past and Accordingly. In a last-ditch attempt to salvage the freedom of the will that he understands to be the highest good. his attempt to becoming of the political community in the reproduction of the employ highest good requires that he will not only the circular repetition of political regimes. he therefore makes a virtue out of this way the will so the becomes. then he must submit to secondary cause within the nexus of causes being will merely a dependent deter mining the necessity of recurrence. . Zarathustra's Riddle" own gloom over this insight is or in "On the Vision heaviness" and the by the voice of the . Thus. but the way eternal recurrence of all as to reproduce it in the or things.

Zarathustra's and spit advice to the shepherd shepherd is to bite rises off the snake's head is it far away. that is. of It is. Though his insist that his never "spit" "destiny" is to become this doc the teacher of the eternal return. the result of what he takes to be the highest human activity. that was my disgust at all creation" existence. as having repudiated He does so far away because he has come to in his attempt understand that the same problem that encountered to trans form his disciples into fellow proves to creators embodied in his attempt to reproduce the autonomous activity of his will: the path to absolute freedom of the will be identical the with the path to or its thoroughgoing "tyrant-madness" self-enslavement. Thus Zarathustra explains that "the small disgust at man . choked me and crept . of sickness" therefore." Moreover. The presence of the low not only persists human life. "foreseeing" longer man.18 does this promulgate "monster" having he is from him. he that the will's "free of all a things in willing the eternal return or the universal be indistinguishable from of necessity: as and thoroughgoing determinism choke. but the per recurrence of the bad in the form of the lowest and smallest sort of the rabble. the that has crawled his throat. Zarathustra trine and in fact describes himself as it. the thought of the eternal recurrence of all things is the or.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra "On the Vision choking upon a -115 and the Riddle" where Zarathustra sees a vision of a shepherd "heavy black snake" that has crawled into his throat and there bit itself fast. the will "turning the low passion of revenge that lies behind the incoherent metaphysical superlative and unfulfillable sense" desire for "freedom and in the of (Beyond Good Evil. freedom will at its peak. as Zarathustra now describes it. despite the rosy "monster" his into animals paint of "snake" it. into my throat. .16 dominion would the Truthsayer prophesied." Zarathustra calls this vision a "parable" and a Convalescent" and asks "who it is that must come In "The it is made clear that the shepherd represents Zarathustra himself picture that insofar as he is a ruler and legislator and that. the life but is in creative great effect of in. the thought of the will eternal return elaborates precisely the what would be required for the to attain to a pure and perfectly would activity impure community of the highest with the lowest and the complete passivity of the will in submitting to a blind and inalterable "fate. 21). When the no does this he up one laughing day?" and "no longer shepherd. This thought proves monstrous and nauseating to Zarathustra when he realizes that the political and cosmological rule of the best or his willing the eternal recurrence of all things means willing not only the reproduction of the will's own goodness or superior petual activity in the person of another. At equality the bottom will Zarathustra's attempt to bring all things under the sway of his lies the same passion that animates the efforts of the preachers of ." That "the man recurs realizes would eternally . paradoxically. knowledge would Thus. . nothing be profitable. that this the first and final cause of all knowing animals and all being is decisively refuted by Zarathustra himself."17 In the thought of the eternal return the doctrine of the will to power as necessarily entail self-sufficient and shows. the of the . all would be one.

" with the absolute freedom that of the Through the refutation of own Zarathustra discovers the primary source of tional constructions thinking is not the will to power and of its inten directed to the overcoming chance. is in accord with reason. In figure political presentation of the life of philosophy in the his Zarathustra is ultimately directed to showing that the principle of the political realm. Zarathustra's revised version of the will an expression of the most to power doctrine passion. that the will is the primary phenomenon and its freedom being.20 freedom his of mind are incompatible his "wisdom.21 need. of a of parts of Zarathustra as it was published under Nietzsche's attempts to author ity may be characterized as follows. In doing so he unfolds an account of being or an ontol ogy in which the highest good and the beautiful are one and the same. shows such a cosmos to be impos a "rational" sible. in Part Three. as a means through which to realize the the political community and account of highest good. character of grounded the thought of the eternal return. "purification" That the drama philosophy The three can Zarathustra is ultimately devoted to such be seen by reviewing its overall trajectory.. the char acter of which he takes to be essentially indeterminate or fluid. Zarathustra's understanding of the starting point and end of the po litical realm is shown to imply a complementary cosmology or an account of the will being of becoming according to which the whole of things is rooted in the to power as both its efficient and its final cause. In other desire (Lust) for eternity words. In Part Two he attempts to employ the becoming of the political community. a good that lies beyond the justice of its moral law. of as on the awareness of the goodness of need and the the other hand.116 to Interpretation all things under the bring political realm. the thought of the eternal return developed. In Part One Zarathustra found a political order that principle of all is truly just by structuring it in accordance with the true being." revenge. Far from having escaped the its justice. the will and its desire for and i. namely. its law and sway of the rabble.e. is in the deepest tension with the principle of the life of philosophy. of "justice" "freedom. but. Therefore it shows both that which a complete causal account could cosmological order. and that genu knowing will. In doing so he offers a teleological the beautiful and the good are wherein becoming in which fundamentally is distinct. is simply fundamental political The self-refutation of Zarathustra's doctrine of the will to power in the thought of the eternal return of the same thus proves to be the refutation of the fundamental ration premise of that philosophical school that finds its origin and inspi in Kant." the core of what it is to be a human Nietzsche's demonstration of the incoherent foundations of "German and Idealism" is in and the service of a philosophy in its original other words. he discovers that the presence within philosophy in the midst of things is a good that cannot be made to fit . of not be given. Nietzsche's primary Platonic recovery of Socratic sense. on the one hand. Finally. love and. which this The self-contradictory is the image of a cosmos in double causality of the will. but is ine rather a projection of and the political onto the natural realm. however. however.

The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra a -117 beautiful to the whole of justly ordered parts. Preface. examination of This discovery human the or political a things. As such he is the closest thing NOTES 1. Zarathustra's mind of is the "mind heaviness" of ("On Reading heaviness. That the made clear of speeches of the Truthsayer June 21. He explicitly Zarathustra as a . if the refutation of Zarathustra's claim to wisdom points to philosophy as the human good. That Zarathustra is to be first lines of read with Plato and of his Socrates in mind is made clear in the very the book in which the famous images the cave and the sun from Plato's Republic are conspicuously employed. Zarathustra has aspect of the political community that is recalcitrantly his understanding of man. it also points to the partial obstruction that the political community and its justice pose to the acquisition of that good." 5. Of course. 9. and therefore of being." Nietzsche philosophical version writing its artful completeness or finitude. in that irrational.'' something like an analysis of rule of the few ("nobility") and the many ("mob-rule"): "On Old and New "devil" 11. In its revised sceptical and extramoral he parodies the incompleteness and infinitude of philosophical speaks inquiry as of the pursuit of "the fundamental (Beyond Good and Evil. but that nevertheless conveys a good ness totality is of things which would made possible not be absent from such a perfect whole. are behind Zarathustra's thought of the eternal return is in "On the Convalescent. 4. Zarathustra's painted of Socrates' Second Sailing Song" (Chicago: distinction between the necessary and the good. p. See "On Cf." turns out to be Cupido or Eros. Tablets. It points to the Seth Benardete. See Letter to Karl Knortz 2. He is simply the most thought Truthsayer. 4. 202. Cf. parodies "wisdom. of this In the original dogmatic and and legislative version parody may be Zarathustra's characterized as follows. Zarathustra's to command his disciples to Jesus' free themselves from their belief in his his disciples to love one another teaching is and the negative reflection of on the attempt to command belief in his teaching and his divinity. ful man that Zarathustra has chanced that he has to a friend. 7. Writing"). 8. The Truthsayer is obviously neither a disciple of Zarathustra's teaching nor a creature of his will. University of Chicago Press). 10. is "the attempt revenge" mind of ("On Redemption"). Zarathustra later specifies the ignorance of human beings Virtue" as believing they and know New what is they do not. however. Zarathustra. but by only by his community in Zarathustra's the speech and thought with community based not upon the mutual possession. Behind the 6. also see Ecce Homo. Zarathustra well arrives at this conclusion on the basis of insufficient evidence: though it may and be the case that the number of particular peoples their particular laws is potentially strictly the various infinite. Through the twofold parody twofold presentation of Zarathustra's "wisdom" Nietzsche of philosophy. belatedly offers the most fundamental kinds of regime: rule of the one and rule of ("despotism"). but the mutual pursuit of wisdom.22 upon in his wanderings. rooted In neglecting to perform an analysis of regimes. Beyond Good and Evil. On the simplest level. it is limited kinds of nevertheless also the case that these particular peoples and laws all fall under a number of kinds or species of regime. One of the most striking signs of Zarathustra's transformation is his temporarily abandoning The god in question his doctrine that "god is for a declaration that he is "god's himself basis of their dead" advocate. after having covered quite a bit of ground in his thinking." 3. 23). stands of claim to have fathomed Life's depths as the in stark contrast and to the portrait he himself in "The Dance ignorant lover Life Wisdom. 153. good and evil when the Chairs of and "On the Old Tables. 1888. appears to offer a 11. In Part Three.

" "The Truthsayer." The Truthsayer has simply drawn these conclusions from Zarathustra's There Zarathustra indicated that although moralistic human beings procreation or may believe amoral secret all willing to be directed to a "a goal" or "something higher. The Eternal Recurrence of the Same. Row." Thus Spoke Zarathustra represents his attempt at such a solution. to uncover that which is unchanging in the nature of things or fundamental problems": see Beyond Good and and Evil. "The speech Self-Overcoming.'' Great Events. In the words of dictory: I myself am phie myself cause Karl Lowith. he then goes on to Zarathustra concludes from this self-refutation that is pp. II. what 53-54. 15. where he makes reference to the last aphorism of the original edition of the tragoedia' latter work. pp." 1 1. reproduces at its peak the contradiction that stands at the center of the traditional morality he had hoped man-god decisively to transcend: is. "historicist" offer a not interpretation accordance Nietzsche's "the philosophical intention. Cf. an aphorism it says at the end of virtually identical to the opening of Zarathustra: take caution! Something this doubtful-undoubting book There is no doubt. "Proteus. 13. the political between the philosopher's pursuit of the truth must include an examination of the false appearances of the political realm. The Wisdom of the Ancients. the realm of ignorance and falsehood. What the preceding argument seems to show is that a solution to this problem of reproduc tion cannot be found on the level of political legislation. Nietzsche's "On publication of Truthsayer. Unfortunately. it would require "something double. Homer." is the im "On Zarathustra's three headshakes before his disciples in Part Two: and see "On the Poets." Life's be is self-overcoming weaker steals. 1984)." 16. 1988). 1935]. trans. Michael Gillespie Tracy Strong (Chicago: in University with of Press. 17. Matter." steals the of the mob That the Truthsayer's reference to "shallow swamps" is meant to indicate the rule is made clear in "On Old to and New Tablets. His odd lack of a give an adequate for the One comic made it impossible for him to it did not stand interpretation of Nietzsche's of thought. divided and self-contra for all eternity the fatality of all existence and its eternal return and: I world" only one conditioned fatality in all the circling of the natural der Ewigen Wiederkunft des Gleichen [Berlin: Kohlhammer. as god. in community with the lowest of the low and submits to suffering the greatest of passions and. namely. or Zarathustra. as man. Vol. Zarathustra's p. his revised wisdom in which mind and the unconditional freedom and self-suffi ciency of the will were to be perfectly combined. IV. 28-31. that Nietzsche the thought of the places eternal the one aphorism in Beyond Good return and Evil dedicated to of an elaboration of in the context of the third part that work. is the perfectly active and self-sufficient creator of the whole of from understanding the freedom of the an of second attempt of the good in terms the Jesus' being out of the infinite power of his will. See "The port of Wanderer' and "On Blessedness Against the This thrice-reiterated Jesus Will. 14. wonders whether in the way of his understanding the thought This renunciation certain other philosophers as well. paradigmatically bad and mischievous declares itself: incipit parodia Heidegger's understanding of Nietzsche's philosophy as essentially tragic in character measures the depth of his misunderstanding. As Nietzsche's Zarathustra makes clear. ed. the topic of which is "the religious essen This fifty-sixth aphorism concludes by suggesting that the thought of the eternal return would be circulus vitiosus deus a vicious circle as god. . to articulate (Nietzsches Philoso 197). 12." 360-425 and Bacon. but only on that of philosophical writing. any final end the direction of which can just as well down as up: "The into the castle and even the heart of the more powerful and power. XIII. Zarathustra limited in seems discover that the protean transformations of the will to power are number or that they fall within a determinate number of kinds. David Farrell Krell (San Francisco: Harper and sense See his Nietzsche. turns out to be a necessary precondition for the life that is preeminently free because it is devoted to the pursuit of truth. The fundamental problem that the incom of patible combination of freedom necessity in the thought of the eternal return points to is that the relation community and philosophy: the political community.118 Interpretation preface parody in the "'Incipit to The Gay Science. Odyssey. therefore. In his "Irony and Affirmation in Nietzsche's Thus Spoke Zarathustra's thought and Robert Pippin de Chicago of scribes this self-refutative aspect of of the eternal return with some clarity: see Nietzsche's New Seas. It should come as no surprise. . overcoming of need." renunciation is the negative reflection of Peter's thrice-repeated renunciation of immediately before his death. 23. lacking .

sceptical in character and so insistence that he is. a philosopher free of all attachment to moral asserts the cosmological and that philosophy is. One can answer this ask observing that according to his own testimony Nietzsche was the practitioner of an art writing (see Beyond Good and Evil. p. "All Song. the Truthsayer proves to be very persistent in alone." also Dancing 4. 381) that is directed to (a) overtly appealing to while at the same time covertly undermining the dominant prejudices of his time. 36 and 87. She power. (b) proffering a morality while simultaneously demonstrating that the genuine life of philosophy is in the deepest tension with the moral law. "Where chattering is there the community in speech and thought in the lies before me like a garden. his attachment to will not leave Zarathustra he and In Part Four of the work in "The Cry of in which Zarathustra have become so close as he reap to be able to guess each other's thoughts when to you. "Fame and Second Sailing. therefore. Song. In "On the Convalescent" Cf. namely. despite his commitment to a particular set of moral values or convictions (see Clark. 29. pp. Dithyrambs of Dionysus. 1794)": Daybreak." necessity in the form of bodily need: he insists on a meal before indulging in speeches.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra 18.'' for every is an afterworld. from the complex motion of the larger argument that in its entirety unfolds. above all. and the prideful account of the thinker as endued with a out responsibility for the whole of things turns Nietzsche according to the dictates of prudence in the 19. 289." 21. 40. 264). therefore. 1990). Within Thus Spoke Zarathustra the animals of Zarathustra are the spokesmen for the doctrine of the eternal return in that the eagle and the serpent represent pride and Zarathustra's godlike his prudence. comes closer to the truth in her treatment of Nietzsche's differing presentations of the thought of the eternal return (see Clark. Seth Benardete. See "Before upon the in his understanding of the general character of causal accounts: they belief in the causality of the will: see Beyond Good and Evil. and question by of esoteric "philosophical" (c) providing of the proto-philosophical reader with a propaedeutic teaching that both seduces him to the pursuit of philosophy and points the way to the transcendence of that teaching in the direction fitting philosophy in the proper sense. p. (Speech of 7 June. chooses to treat which Nietzsche's are arguments 213-27. and The Gay Science. Zarathustra Socrates' 3. 'de fonder sur la terre l'empire de la sagesse." eternal desire longs for "The Other For all desire wants itself: "The Drunken Eternity. Nietzsche on clearly Truth Philosophy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Preface." merely by looking into each other's faces. on account of his 227). 152 and 192. Robespierre. vertu' 20." Having pears by chance. To every soul belongs another world. for the smallest just. 3. bridge. characterizes world following that terms. How lovely it is words and sounds exist: are words and sounds not rainbows and bridges of appearance soul (Schein) between the eternally divided. one can legitimately wishes to appear in the guise of a teacher and promoter of why it is that Nietzsche these doctrines. he harboured in of his the of that moral fanaticism whose executor another disciple Rousseau and confessed et de la justice de la himself to be. Unfortunately. 30." and 22. she for that doctrine in abstraction from the contexts of the works in each work squared found and. the ill-constituted. If both Zarathustra and." 54): Clark insists that Nietzsche recognition that there are no good arguments to support teaching of the will to it. bumped into Zarathustra him: he simply Need. . This closeness is confirmed Zarathustra declares to the Truthsayer that "whatever in my cave belongs to me also belongs where he reminds Zarathustra of We last hear from the Truthsayer in "The Last Supper. however. by "convictions" ("Antichrist. Sunrise. Between the most alike appearance (Schein) lies most Within the wholeness of this community Zarathustra seems gap is the most difficult to beautiful and within the genuineness of its community the truth truth of the to discover the finally of the every other soul beautifully. Nietzsche himself ultimately will repudiate the doctrines of the to power and the eternal return. too too soul had been bitten idea by the moral tarantula Rousseau. Maudemarie Clark is ceives 119 per and one of the few commentators on Nietzsche's work who the problematic character of the doctrine of the will to power: see pp. "Kant depths felt of to be a concealing surface adopted by the presentation of his thought. 27. That Nietzsche return of all understands a the incoherence of Zarathustra's attempt to will the eternal of things to be demonstration the impossibility of a complete causal account of the whole of things are all is grounded founded 11. This leads her to attribute to Nietzsche an attitude that cannot be they with his own definition. 283-85.


50 Hans Sluga. Heidegger." spawning stimulating new if not as actions least for his perhaps philosophical vision.50 cloth. 1997). Vol. xii + 263 pp.50 cloth.Review Essays Heidegger. Caputo. even to the point of at "apologetics. University the Polity. NY: Cornell University Press. Yet these works reverse effect of interest in his for his philosophy.. xii + 129 pp.. 1992). + 306 pp. $49. Heidegger's Silence (Ithaca. $49. In this essay.50 paper.95. and National Socialism Frank Schalow of New Orleans John D. greater notoriety.. 1996). Heidegger's Philosophy and Nazism (Berkeley: University of California Press. Demythologizing Heidegger (Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Zimmerman. Tom Rockmore.95 paper. Heidegger's Confrontation ogy. $14. 1995). Indeed. $47. $33. Heidegger's Crisis: Philosophy and Politics in Nazi Germany (Cambridge. Politics. x + 285 pp. 26. No. I develop to un- such an approach by examining a wide spectrum of which seek interpretation. Fall 1998. this century comes to a close.95. MA: Harvard University Press. $15. $19. Berel Lang. $19. 1993).. itics (Princeton: Princeton Timely Meditations: Martin Heidegger and Postmodern Pol University Press. Philosophy..95 paper. Since Victor Farias published his book detailing Heidegger's involvement in National Socialism (1987). xv + 232 pp. One might expect that this trend of Heidegger criticism would produce such dark revelations about his fascist tendencies have had the as to dampen all enthusiasm for his thought. a wave of books have appeared which develop this theme. Art (Bloomington: Indiana with Modernity: Technol xxvii University Press... Michael E.95 paper. and Nazism (Cambridge: Cambridge Uni versity Press. xi + 234 pp. 1993). 1 . Leslie Paul Thiele. the greatest thinker of his time has never received Precisely for has never this reason the need for balanced books criticism of will Heidegger's thought been more urgent. $15. Julian Young. 1990). xi + 382 pp.

. Caputo's forms an important those scholars who sit on the Heideggerian fence and those who his philosophy because of his politics. One point example. Caputo develops "deconamination structive" strategies as practiced by the luminaries of postmodernity. Lyotard.122 Interpretation his fascist ties. several books paint the Heideggerian Among these books is Richard Wolin's The Politics of Being. the scope considering his or her corol of that freedom remains un clear. daeo-Christianity. which follows on the heels of to re-examine Heidegger's involvement in National Socialism. of to Heidegger the intellectual-thinker darkest implications Not surprisingly. that Heidegger recanted National Socialism its ideology. As bridge between reject discover. Given this historical archaeology. I will point cover the truth about to a theme which remains dormant throughout the majority of those analyses. which also exemplifies historical. implicit evidence and that of his his contin to National ways of different Socialism. is . we can making inferences from Heidegger the man-politician and vice versa. politics. namely. Among first the various books addressing Heideg Nazism politics. Farias' attempt ontology and his reactionary outstanding example. Wherever the terpret criticism of Heidegger becomes which most severe. we will to expose Heidegger's thought to the criticisms of work those traditions which his brand excludes.g. however. attempts to rein vision his thought in such ways more compatible with our democratic become Julian inevitable. including Berel Lang's Heidegger's Silence. that he exhibited antisemitic provides silence about the ual allegiance evaluate horrors of Auschwitz tendencies. When scholars analyze Heidegger's philosophy. they a conclusion often subordinate their explication of his concept of freedom to already the drawn about his politics. From this a more radical spirit of an of criticism of Heidegger arises ex his presuppositions. Although Farias champions this position. e. Rockmore implements criticism. world comes a more recent example within the English-speaking and from Tom Rockmore's Heidegger's a method of Philosophy Hans Sluga Nazism." in Heidegger's Crisis. for example. which is exemplified in John Caputo's Demythologizing Heidegger. we must examine different interpretive the polity ger's sion strategies which scholars employ to outline the place of in Heidegger's and thought. the interconnection between Heidegger's concept of freedom and the example of his politics. We can appreciate a thinker's politics only even when by lary treatment of freedom. that may be described This fact-gathering enterprise is crucial in order to embraced as "sociologicalsupport the con and never clusions. implements his an "analytic" method to refute by point the damning evidence critics gather against him. In order to discern this tendency. we must consider those which explore the ten between his innovative development political views. Unlike Zimmerman. along with the literature detail ing the atrocities of the Holocaust. "Teutonic-Hellenism" including Ju- Levinas. of and Derrida. of One such is Michael Zimmerman's Heidegger's Confrontation "immanent" with Modernity. In the process.

The thinker's commitment to authentic existence fosters the openness of philosophical appears between thought and existence. however. This work stands motifs of must apart include Leslie Paul by reinterpreting the which undercuts key the Heidegger's thought in he order to outline a politics Nazi ideology initially embraces. the Polity. ethics. of was to tear away this buffer and foreclose the all too convenient option insulating Heidegger's thought from the surrounding his life in Germany. they would not have had the impact they did upon many Anglo-American scholars if a transition were not already under way to engage Heidegger's thought with an area of philoso catastrophic events Farias' historical phy he seemingly ignored: namely. e. then practical concerns. inquiry.Heidegger. he this correlation may have been slow in ontological inquiry only by participat in being's disclosure. which shift in the emphasis on provides the climate Heidegger scholarship not only parallels for hearing the troubling allegations Farias' but. Philosophy. and National Socialism also 123 Young's Heidegger. and Charles Scott began Heidegger's to recognize in the 1980's. indeed. of ethics and politics. of most proponents with of Heidegger's thought had when aware of his brief flirtation "official National Socialism and he became rector of the power. While in capturing the interest of many importance been etched in Heidegger's thought with its had scholars. If the inquiry into being is to have its root in the historical situation of human beings. philosophy originates from the concrete situa ing tion in which the inquirer places him. he If concrete praxis orients the question of being.or herself in question and owns up to his emphasizes that a thinker can engage or her unique existence as a finite it self. This work. II. University overall Freiburg in 1933 supported Hitler's rise to the phi Yet the story" has been to separate Heidegger losopher from Heidegger the politician. Being and Time (1927). hence. already the publication of his magnum opus. it is just as necessary to of approach thought as an occasion to question the possibility of ethics as to present his philosophy as an esoteric narrative on the meaning being. Even been prior to Farias' book. We Thiele's Timely Meditations.g. Nazism. As poignant as revelations were. sanctuary for truth apart from its exemplification in the realm As Herbert Marcuse argues in a famous letter to his teacher: . thereby creating a buffer between the brilliance of his ontological insights and whatever myopia he may have shown in his political judgment. Given this reciprocity hypocritical to suggest that philoso phy of human can secure a action.. then any such investigation must speak to those ethical dilemmas which distinguish perhaps the most turbu lent period in world history. As Zimmerman. In this work. raises. Caputo. The Farias' effect of revelations. must help to shape the landscape of ontological inquiry.

Thus the question he asks is not simply whether his thinking became juxtaposed Heidegger had Nazi ties.' he did not mean rational calculation. let alone the turmoil of including develop a new politics Germany in the 1930's. and turned everything that ever was and truth into its opposite. i. The audacity of the politi decision became the corollary to the philosopher's attempt at original thinking. Michael Zimmerman and em braces this statement as the leitmotif for his discussion. granting humanity the power to impose its will on the diver sity of being's manifestation. As Zimmerman states: . The inquiry by he can address all of these configuration. Interpretation .e. That is. technology in social organization in order that we can combat ger saw and this potential both Western capitalism and communism as for destruction. the which unique forgetting of being. pp.. the our need to day. spearhead ing violence and mass destruction themselves. were the set of variables which shaped Heidegger's interest in National Social ism and seduced press him into the misunderstanding that Nazi ideology could ex the political implications of his thought? To answer this question. but the of technology.' bloody In Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity. As Zimmerman emphasizes. considers Zimmerman the interface between the intellectual Zeitgeist emphasis in Ger many concern from Spengler's for on the "decline of the West" to Jiinger's the worker's encounter with the global of forces of industrialization as a and Heidegger's interpretation the crisis of Western history descent into nihilism. we cannot make the distinction between the he philosopher and the human be being be were Martin Heidegger it contradicts your own philosophy. One can debate the sociological factors ment which surround Heidegger's involve in National Socialism. as the political movement which sum hence turned to National Socialism epochal challenge.124 '. of "enframing. but instead the mode of comportment which opened one awesome and dreadful presencing (p. us most basic global consideration of all remains the problem Because of its solicits from equally radical responses destructive power. and the end of metaphysics. Yet could Heidegger verted went astray by underestimating how leaders be sub by the powers of technology they seek to harness. "Heidegger claimed that only authentic thinking and poetry could mons cians' human beings to face this save Germany in its hour of crisis. ." up to the its darkness and horror to face the crisis of not far fetched. xxiii-ix) Jews. but instead how with such a why what destructive ideology." the process of aspects of issues simultaneously and distinguish their As course." nature. By 'thinking. On the surface. is of political which things. But he cannot mistaken about a regime that murdered millions of Jews merely because they that made terror part of everyday life really tied to the concept of spirit and freedom (Quoted in Kettering and Neske. is "the question concerning all domination over exerts control and technology technology. 84). Heideg instruments of technology. A philosopher can mistaken about politics then will openly admit his error.

what the Polity. Yet hubris and quite another to trace origin. to seek in the strife of the present the possibility of transmitting one's heri tage to future generations. elements of must Art becomes the vehicle incompatible harmony revered and strife. The self-mythifying Heidegger believed that he had been destined to proclaim the saving vision of his hero. Unfortunately.Heidegger. On the one hand. But the question becomes whether the artist's way of begetting creativity from chaos. philosophy and politics. . [emphasis on] the The grandson of the linking him with Holderlin. frenzy and violence. translating that insight into guidelines of political arises to take On the other hand. tion can provide even the barest recipe for politics. 84) In the end. that is. but instead blood and instinct. for joining these apparently The ar tist's ex-centricity convention and be in contrast to the complacency of bourgeois the self-serving politics of the modem enlightenment. According thing to accuse a to Zimmerman. gerians" between the status as a thinker attuned to the who "right-wing voice of being Heideggerians" who uphold and the "left-wing Heideg employ deconstractive tactics to expose incongruities within the Heideggerian text (Schurmann. and that he himself was thus the worldhistorical figure who would transform the 'destiny' fate of the West. Consider Heidegger's . a the greatest chal the lenge is to possibility Heidegger's thought through dialogue which examines of politics in the contemporary world. a new opportunity Heidegger's short fall as an occasion to re-examine the perennial problem of the relation and between theory praxis. man born in a manger in Holderlin's beloved Swabian countryside knew that he was destined to change the course of history! (P. it becomes forefront of increasingly evident that the question of politics lies any future appropriation of his philosophy. . 127). his we must still ask where a rift emerges why Heidegger found National Socialism to be at these revelations leave us as scholars. harmony from strife. Heidegger's hero sense of combines a nostalgia for the Greek origins with a grandiose "destiny" (Geschick) as reflected in Schelling's thought. 132) The heroic leader must exhibit the creative power to transform tradition. p. the Nazis united instinct with technology in a way which led to unparalleled devastation. domination humanity and nature. conflict and resolution. As reactionary modernists. (P. Heidegger may flawed realm of politics could cal vision person of succumb to a ever yield a kind of hubris in it is one believing that the leader its with the kind of world-histori to match technology's global reach. For those who still espouse Heideg gerian at the themes. Once and destiny from destruc having understood tractive. Not surprisingly. the and National Socialism 'dark' 125 the Nazis meant by 'unrestrained' and was not the of being of entities. Holderlin. Sacrifice the rather than comfort provides key to motivate individuals to place their trust in a new political regime. Zimmerman pinpoints the dissonance between Heidegger's grasp of the Westem crisis and the prospect of action. recast Going forward.

126 Interpretation past Within the have decade. Despite the deaf to the religious orientation of solicitousness about Heidegger's early thought. (Lowith. the scandalous comparison culture . Caputo. The exclusivity with which holds the Greco-German other set of categories of and was virtues amounts to dismissing Heidegger up the importance of an Christian origin. in his stark concept of Dasein. 72). who rebuked for his "self-stylization into p. "he the flesh in the biblical narratives (p. in must emerge "singular. . and heroism. baffling silence about of the gas chambers real to modem agri pain these are all scandalously suffering" insensitive to 'factical' and concrete human (p. Thus Caputo distinguishes the two dislocations in Heidegger's thought from which a new According commitment to topography of questioning can emerge. love. there have been two major breakthroughs which dramatically changed the face of Heidegger studies. 73). the categories of tenderness. we must cultivate a plu forum in which various criticisms of his philosophy: the need to heed the the and disenfranchised (Levinas). According to Caputo. . in his youthful "hermeneutics of he ethos which includes motifs from primordial Christianity. As Caputo indicates. 207). . truth. To open Heidegger's thought to the ralistic "piety" traditions. including care. the dissident (Derrida). and temporality. . Heidegger's turn to National Socialism thought. In his 'being' " advancing this criticism. The second pertains to the discovery of Heideg ger's thought uncovers an and in the early 1920's. all of which stem from Hellenic the Holocaust. self-affirmation. The first involves the emergence of the political question and the revelations of ment Heidegger's involve in National Socialism. and sayer of Heideggerian thought of this tendency does it purging to cultivate another ethos whose roots spring from the Judaeo- Christian heritage. John Caputo blends his these two developments in way the compassionate spirit of Heidegger's early religious orientation subsequent commitment major the callousness of to totalitarian politics. love otherwise absent facticity. e.g. In a De- mythologizing which plays against Heidegger." community. Heidegger's thought cannot occur without undoing the of a privileged origin from which Western philosophy "homecoming" the nostalgic search for it through a with (Holderlin). Ironically. Only by possible a shepherd. the German seem people's Christian heritage does not deterrent in preventing the atrocities of National Socialism. a new voice of the persecuted "justice" (Lyotard). Heidegger abandoned his early theological ori entation to have been much of a in favor of Holderlin's to express mythic-poetic of other vision of the gods. The deconstruction unfold of Heidegger's thought requires an alternative axis to the key motifs of But an appropriation of "myth" Greco-Germanic arises and his ontology. become 68). charity. to the radically to the generic being's claim upon Dasein (p. thinker. . Caputo concurs teacher Karl Lowith. "His parallels his to specific volitional categories of strength." which speaks contrast to the suffering "truth" of the of individual.

. Thus Rock philosophy" "resoluteness. the self's exercise of resolve and sion of political decision and the of 1933. "What I call the 'official' view students. being's transmis its destiny most to a chosen intellectual German people's emergence as a vanguard of world history. ties the element compelling question which Rockmore poses is whether some in Heidegger's philosophy prohibited him from recognizing the atroci the banner of National perpetuated under Socialism.. there is no. the time has come to combat the "offi that Heidegger briefly flirted with National Socialism in 1933 only an ultimate to reject it shortly thereafter upon resigning from the post of rector in 1934. Rockmore." maintains that the key motifs of "conscience. maintaining the its contamination by his behavior from 1933 Interview" a narrower in 1966. and National Socialism 127 Heidegger's most vehement critics converge in a single attempt to counter the wholesale attempt ment by "Heideggerians" to whitewash their mentor's involve and in National Socialism. Thus Rockmore makes can then establish the complex synergies and tween fundamental ontology the relevant associations between Heidegger's emphasis on the elitism of au thentic philosophy and his leadership his as rector of the German university. Socialism" Rockmore's overarching thesis is that Heidegger's thought is "intrinsically (p. Rockmore thereby closes the loophole by which Heidegger's seek an escape of defenders purity to his "Spiegel "political" his thought in over against from confronting his Nazism. National or no important. link (p. Both in Heidegger's texts and more as ars proceed less as disciples in steeped histo "guilt" rians. he couches the Heideggerian problem of this polis in this which supposedly hold be National Socialism. propagated not view only by Heidegger but by some of his closest It is the between Heidegger's political" philosophical position and that. Yet even given the plausibility of these connec tions. than a reflection upon the princi ples of the polity.Heidegger. This is a different position than maintaining that Heidegger outlines the ontological presuppositions of the polis and hence his thought can be interpreted as implicating various political stances. for Rockmore "hero. the Polity. roughly speaking. construes the term sense to mean the implementation of a kind of ideol rather ogy aligned with Heidegger's thought. 54). In Heidegger. This distinction becomes important. Because Rockmore way. 74). these have is no bearing on our assessment of Heidegger may have exhibited as his thought.g. as Nazism." Heidegger's philosophy (e. namely. the "destiny") are adaptable to Nazism and only Nazism. Philosophy. however. 54). stance. Rockmore schol exemplifies this critical does Sluga in Heidegger's Crisis." more makes a stronger claim than most Nazism was based in his in suggesting that Heidegger's "turn to (p. despite a whatever personal shortcomings man. III. and that." story" detective story assessing his As Rockmore states. and cial their strategy is to uncover unusual facts about Heidegger the person and then weave them together "innocence.

there which are different interpretations But it is safe to of the degree to he Heidegger was or was not antisemitic. stitutes plight of Lang points to a double fault by which the Jews during Hitler's uprising. What stands out is his question for which even Heidegger's detractors do Heidegger not way have a of focusing simple answer: How can we continue to grant such premier stature in the history of philosophy when his indifference to the plight of humanity appears so obvious? The irony is that "Heidegger attempts to break the very notion of the limits of thinking . freedom and necessity. Berel Heidegger ignored the retrospect. the public and occasional" the private. 100-101). gories of interpreted along these character that the depths of its cannot be fit into the cate Greek tragedy. but the intellectual others. insofar as the and then. philosophy assumes such a leadership role as com pensation for a floundering economic and political life characterizing Germany . The "tragic question then becomes. In Heidegger's Silence. In agreeing with that it is necessary to "see a connection in Heideg act of human between the domains of the political and the philosophical. In this clear sense Lang's the is not altogether novel.128 Interpretation to According dient Rockmore. of illumination and blindness. but in thought" ignoring the "Jewish question" continues to "settle for limits to his forces life he (pp. Sluga tional more reconstructs the historical environment which precipitated the rise of Na and Socialism. Sluga illustrates how thought transform the fragmented tradition of the German Volk and its uncertain future into a vision of destiny. While the macrocosmic events of the Western crisis can be lines. Ironically. Lang ger history (pp. 5-8). What shared with only German intellectual to align with the dark it about not only Heidegger. philosophy While Zimmerman and Rockmore Germany show that as a catalyst of politi not develop a single in a political vacuum. the Holocaust may be of such a singular darkness. the professional and the thesis (p. Why does be that Heidegger's Greek sense nance occur? And a one possible answer might dimension" destiny includes in the purest of of strife and reconciliation. which made the politics of National Socialism attrac tive and which allowed scale? intolerance toward the Jews to which develop on such a broad This is the question Hans Sluga raises. Of course. . But it may more accurate to suggest that Heidegger acknowledged political develop ments only on a macro power level proper to thought and not on the micro level of this disso concept of conflicting interests. in con again neglected the "Jewish question" Holocaust the most abominable maintains Rockmore. unlike the nihilism Nietzsche envisioned. Heidegger speaking sanctified the role of silence as an ingre of authentic existence to the point that when the time came out against the he had a built- in be excuse for not forces of totalitarianism. He emphasizes less the intricacies took in of Heidegger's thought philosophy does can the unique role which cal action. never saw the persecution of the Jews as a philosophical problem say that in its own right. 5). In Heidegger's Crisis. Yet Heidegger of was not the was Nazism.

ontology some of the basic components integral to any freedom. Philosophy cannot then be to the rather a philosopher may inculcate to show within his or her enterprise a questioning attitude which speaks to the possibility of politics (pp. be translated into any specific may For example." forged through the will. Sluga takes an thinker's thought arises through a important step in dialogue with the "reduced" his or her time. action. inevitably The action must as a be but in among order not to appear arbitrary it must project "common of descent" all of its proponents (p. but what extent a political crises of of the political. which philosophy prefigures cumbed. 22). in the 1930's. And because the determination this ancestry involves both establishing a as hierarchy among its members as well excluding those who do not belong. link between which proclaims a new destiny and the rhetoric of a totalitarian the resurgence of becomes more than accidental. for most critics construe these . In outlining this Gestalt addressing to political. the brand of Nazi politics to the Germans ultimately suc a While Heidegger may have embraced Nazi ideology. a process occurs. an opportunism "timely. he nevertheless upheld Greek view of politics as involving the determination of the polis as a "site" (topos). There are many different philosophers to whom we might turn to provide insight into and the nature of the polis Plato and Hegel. Heidegger understood the not Greek polis as a site that combines the human concern for the good with an occasion to act. Indeed.g. and National Socialism the 129 a condition of social instability. Mill and Kant. Given this philosophy politics the Polity. "Politics is thereby always a process of ticular priorities of self-legitimation self-legitimation necessarily which par in for action and particular social structures must be justified" (p.Heidegger. and the possibility of law. not Because fascism is so tenets Western democracy. 245-48). dient in In a According an overall where to Sluga. But despite Heidegger's Nazi ties. community. IV. 19). Arendt that he quali Marcuse. this sense of the polis formed one important ingre Gestalt of politics which are on took shape in National Socialism.. it may be possible which conflict with the specific politics proves Heideg develop other inferences about the polity ideology of fascism. We order need to make this sights distinction in that a philosopher harbors in into the nature of the polis which or political beliefs he she upholds. it is uncovers especially provocative to claim that polis: contrary to the his e. it is "political" not obvious fies as one of these of thinkers. setting institutions the decline. To preserve the question of to extract totalitarian elements to from to be one of the greatest strengths of Sluga's careful analysis. a voluntaristic sense of prevails. And ger's while one may try vision. which unfolds within the historical compass of being's mani festation.

As our discussion of the previous . offers steps toward Anarchic be praxis "will be di ametrically cilably 14). Yet his opposed to the Fiihrerprinzip. resolve is of such a indeterminate any prescription of the good within that decision (pp. in way thinking and be informed by action and not simply the other way around.). and while the addresses the dan involved in totalitarianism. Richard Wolin is hyperbolic Wolin prospect one such critic we must address before entertaining the of a "Heideggerian politics. it is perhaps the is among the For Heidegger.. a Heideggerian politics must confront. Thus Wolin concept of resolve. Heidegger believed that tological concepts must be developed out of the ontic stream of concrete. The indeterminacy port of Heidegger's concept of authentic selfhood implies that one could exhibit the steadfastness of resolve and yet do terrible things. it holds only if we accept the deconstructive paradox that governance arises from overturning pre-existing models of political rule. hence only praxis can illustrate the mode of governance which thought seeks principles in divesting and itself of all rational unfolds at such a (arche) must and models of presence. Schurmann problem stands alone as a scholar who tackles a tenacious a solution. While this most problematic. alien to all reduction to the uniform. resolve is correlation a way of bringing oneself can develop those in concert with what the situation possibilities which speak demands. action hostile to the standard" solution operates on a plane of generality. anyone sympathetic the lack of ethical content pinpoints in Heidegger's which Wolin a problem to the prospect of on developing experience. An "anarchic praxis" the forefront that of a new epochal relation between being thought. Reiner Schurmann this problem by of explicating the insights suggesting that praxis constitutes the domain for Heidegger's thought. In many respects. however.g." paints a grim picture of what happens when a philosopher In The Politics of Being. Ac singular character as to render cording to Wolin. sup emphasizes the inhumane ideology of National Socialism. how But once having a developed concepts on an ontological can their scope be readjusted to include the diverse variables of ontic concern of truth and the on so that action becomes locus language and of thought provides a sanctuary addresses of freedom? In Heidegger Being Acting.130 Interpretation formal which concepts whose motifs as stances meaning can in Heidegger first articulated circum only be derived from the them. he Nazism nor an apologetic makes neither an encounter with Heideg for it primary. vious. e. The analogue abruptness Heidegger's political decision 1933 has its in his concept of most ob resoluteness (Entschlossenheit). breaks with the enlightenment tradition of political checks and balances and seeks to recre ate of the polis ex nihilo from "decision" a single of (Entscheidung). factic plane. it would a type of action irrecon (p. in order that one to the dilemma in question. We must recall that Schurmann Farias' published his book in French five former years before the gers ger's publication of book. 35 ff. his commitment to National Socialism.

not answer Young all of makes a case against Heidegger's critics which. at least exposes some of their one-sidedness. On the first promoting selfhood as by failing front. When joined Young's solicitude. Moreover. provides According to Dallmayr. on the ensuing decade would produce more caustic criticisms of Heidegger's Nazi based extreme. but Wolin.Heidegger. Young appeals a sense of epitomized to provide grounds for its rejection" to Heidegger's concept of authentic which responsibility in totalitarianism. and Nazism Julian as well Young counters the criticisms of the scholars mentioned above. Dallmayr's appeal to "letting be" holds promise as a either case a key for developing our political obligations toward others. Against Rockmore was by point Wolin. Philosophy. Because in is not movement pushes philosophy to its surprising that the pendulum would swing in the other direc defense of Heidegger would emerge. Young argues that Heideg for the other. By drawing upon Heidegger's eclectic interests an in Anaximander stood anew as a and Schelling. as those of a wide spectrum of European thinkers from Levinas to to Lyotard. Young. for his or ger's concept of solicitude promotes a concern her own integrity. Young a sudden and that Heidegger's turn to National Socialism adopted a almost far from momentous which decision. 50). But in further exploration of the parameters of human freedom may be . it tion and a allegiances than attempts at academics defending every a political his thought. instead. 79). In Heidegger. in regime. if it does their objections. Heidegger's of injustice sights into the nature ironic way of re-examining his texts to discover in of justice. Heidegger logical categories such as "inferior" was skeptical of any attempt to apply bio "superior" "blood-line" to designate a people as or (p. a way is couched more in the language of logic than in phenomenol Young as that Heidegger's critics commit a and nection between his thought the claim implicate" Nazism. and National Socialism - 131 indicates. Fred ger" Dallmayr crystallizes a perspective that there Along with is "another Heideg example beyond the Nazi ideologue. a way which condemns the exploitation of people and under a fascist for Young in a concludes missed that Being Time harbors an ethic of respect critics" persons way by Heidegger's " 'decisionist' (p. 41). philosopher Young refutation claims proceeds of like "analytic" an to provide a point and Heidegger's opponents. which claims In ogy. books the Polity. 104). Lacoue-Labarthe Derrida. Rockmore. is contrary to the demand toward conformity On the second front. Against that Heidegger was Hugo Ott. Heidegger had been percolating in Germany and for reactionary form of politics two decades (p. 38-41). Young maintains of not antisemitic rather exhibited concern toward many his Jewish students (pp. Farias. The fallacy fallacy works inferring a con itself out on two fronts that either Heidegger's philosophy harbors concepts which "positively Nazism National Socialism or his thought "negatively implicates (p. 125). Dallmayr suggests that justice can be under others with great "juncture" (Fuge) or measure which care" disposes us "to let be and to attend to them with considerate emphasis on (p.

they yield nuances to enhance our reflections on the polis. we this "disclosive evoke other of the liberties assume. If an our democratic system on is its assumptions." rather abstract unless it can develop a critical edge to match liberal thinkers' criticism of Heidegger's language political views. the nexus of politics. namely. 81-83). that democracy includes its own presupposi tions which. but calls each of us to submit to it as a place of dwelling. the key to devel oping a democracy lies in safeguarding maximum participation among its mem bers. Thiele locates this power of critical which fulcrum in for the way that ger exhibits the disclosive other truth. In the proximity community action of this place we receive the guidance to act as members of a and thereby engage in dialogue "word" over the most equitable mode of governing.. however." Correlatively. Of in all the scholars who appropriate Heidegger's insights into politics a positive way. harbors a concession which most of Heidegger's critics have from making. What Heidegger recognizes. 48-49). Leslie Paul Thiele follows this lead. Heideg is synonymous with freedom.132 Interpretation in order to required rectify the Heideggerian Gelassenheit lacks As much as omission which Lang identifies. 198). the self's unique way of dwelling with others. Language is not simply an instrument of verbal expression. including "right" as a constitutional resetting the parameters of free speech which we accept (pp.g. e. Western democracy. although in a way which can assumptions about of to the naive contemporary democracy. facets as as Thiele indi cates. that moral emphasis on can (pp. there is a more primordial connection "free" between freedom and speech "speech" than appears in how the adjective a qualifies the "right" not a by which one activity of individual in democratic or sense. In this way a community develops. if government as fully we articulated. is that the power which permits political participation. p. In words. the between logos and community. namely. Yet the fact that Heideg ger's thought can take this novel turn right to about "vindicate" him either may not be sufficient evidence in its own for his Nazi allegiance or subsequent silence be taken which can alien it. Free speech is asserts his her self-interest over against . As Thiele emphasizes. may exhibit shortcomings in our system of know it. can also Heidegger's texts be directed against him. Thiele raises the question which would losophy within a practical context. A still more unorthodox approach must motifs within a political context order transpose Heideggerian presumably to them. then tional concepts ontology implemented in our democratic an original freedom" must be able to cast practices. in Such an approach refrained to articulate the democratic precepts we uphold. language. language and dwell By tracing synergy Thiele develops a "postmodern Yet this perspective remains ing. As Arendt suggests. simul taneously allows for the cultivation of individuality with a communal setting. the a first inserts us into the speakers) space within of in way which gathers together each of us (as community (The Human Condition. reorient phi speak In Timely Meditations. Heidegger develops understanding may freedom "letting be. that is. "tolerance" namely. of light the opera Thus.

Thiele shows how the spirit of dwelling in Heidegger's sense. Literally.) is iconoclastic. . inviting not contrariness is contrary response from the other. The arbitrary. 16). democracy can be "Democracy is a to link journey toward freedom that remains ever under way. the ontological difference these opinions harbor" (p.Heidegger. Through his predicated upon clever extrapolations. politics. Heideg help of a Kantian framework merits serious consideration (Sherover. there is a subtle enigma which remains and politics. (For discussion and its connection with the persecution of the Jews. and National Socialism 133 participate through which contrary voices can in serving the good of the community as a whole. 60-63). Heidegger take the argues that his exchange philosophers form of Auseinandersetzung to "set apart" (Vom Wesen. in recalling Sluga's unclarified about ger construes reverse criticisms. 86-100. While freedom "letting be" can admit beliefs may discord among its participants. thrives within a polis the greatest importance. philosophical inquiry is a "work of human (p. the situation is almost the polis sanctions the philosophical enterprise a motif as an enterprise of could provide Is there in Heidegger's thought which the linchpin for such a reversal. but rather is the "openness" beliefs. Auseinandersetzung Heidegger. . While philosophical inquiry depends upon Auseinandersetzung. is a the voice of the other can resound only because there forum in reserved for it itself at within the polis. where freedom of speech assumes Heidegger discounts when Since by its nature the philosophical enterprise and even subversive. philosophy flourish only it is . As Heidegger in the Basic Problems of Phenomenology. but as also on the listener's duty to remain open and to. 128). it Sluga. 5-12. and "implicate" thereby suggest that his philosophy may the opposite political stance which his own fascist ideology condemns? on In his 1930 lectures with previous human must freedom. 167). . p. another the Polity. will which it cannot allow speech to become a self-indulgent expression of is rooted in concealment rather than unconcealment." According to philosophical exchange thrives controversy to the extent that the invitation in freedom welcoming serves states a of speech: of of conflict reveals what is at stake namely. means or "place in on such opposition. Thus Heidegger's philosophy free speech how comes conflict with the point where its commitment a to of yields to an ideology was see prominent censorship supporting in Nazi Germany pp. "The justly hal lowed right to free speech might be grounded not only in the speaker's preroga tive to utter opinions and person. While Yet. Although in his as weak rectoral address can "academic freedom" spirited. Thiele's attempt democracy as Charles Sherover does with the pp. 292). But freedom takes shapes within a forum of exchange which safeguards the voice of the other. even solicitous of. the process of unconcealment freedom" itself. challenge" Disclosive freedom beckons to the democratic ger's thought with (p. censorship. but like philosophical dialogue a greater master. controversial. the interface between philosophy as the vanguard of Heideg in a philosophy democratic setting: the free exchange.

Trans. Die Grundprobleme de Phanomenologie." Gary Steiner. but." Heidegger Studies 1 1 the Political Dystopias. 1 (1995): 111-86. New Haven: University Press. The Human Condition. Kettering. 15. no. Mark. 1990. Heidegger. 1989. philosophy can then flourish through the "tradition [which] is a delivering into been" the freedom of discussion (die Freiheit des Gesprdches) with what has of each citizen rooted. 1981. Ithaca. Ed. Pierre. Hannah. George." Graduate Faculty Philosophy Fritsche. philosophy of its task." Man and World 29 (1987): 327-34. Truth. "Heidegger and the and and the Political. The Political Ontology of Martin Heidegger. 'The Essence of and the SelfBailiff. University Press. Trans. New York: World Publishing.134 Interpretation to the challenge of freedom. Jean T. Trans. Joseph Margolis Tom Rockmore. no. 1975. Andre Michel.. 1993. Marcus (ed. 1982. London: Routledge. on the words responds to this contrary. The Origins of Totalitarianism. Johannes. and 1995. GA 31. Emil. is As Heidegger's so (What Is Philosophy?. Martin. will arrive sooner SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY Arendt. Karl.' Assertion of the German University. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 1958. Pascal. Miguel. 1958. 1991.). "jews. by re locating ticity itself within the polis and the tradition as a whole. NY: Cornell David. CA: Stanford University Press. no. Heidegger adelphia: and Nazism. Martin Heidegger and National Socialism. GA 24. 1990. "On Brinks and Bridges in Journal 18. Blitz. Silence. reawakened challenge not by accepting the elitism Ironically. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Martin Heidegger and European Nihilism. Heidegger the Trans. The Other Heidegger. Graduate Faculty Philosophy Brainard. " Lyotard. John. menschlichen Vom Wesen der Yale Freiheit. 1962. politics would then a Heideggerian could become possible at which the time freedom be translated into "multivocality" facilitates than we dialogue among diverse traditions. Phil Temple University Press. Heidegger Studies 5 (1989): 138-48. and What Is Philosophy? Trans. and Farias. 35). Wilde William Kluback. 33. Lisa Harries. Jean-Francois. Frankfurt am Main: Vittorio Klostermann. 1 (1991): 1-611. Heidegger's Ithaca: Cornell Being Possibility of Political Philosophy. New York: Paragon Press. Kovacs. when such a pp. Perhaps this time think. 2. "Truth and Power: Martin Heidegger. In this spirit. Heidegger and University Press. Heidegger. Trans. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Dallmayr." Time Journal 14. 1998. Palo Alto. in which the fac- eloquently suggest. "A Philosophical Confrontation with the (1995): 191-204. Richard Wolin. "On Heidegger's Lowith. and Gunther Neske. Victor. de Beistegui. Peter Collier. Political. Fred. Bourdieu. .

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inclusiveness and neutrality liberal versions which they do not.95. Democracy's Discontent: America in Search 1998. $16. The Pluralist Game. others with simply to assert liberalism as an overarching social framework little to supporting justification. indeed could not. University Press. Like other pluralisms. No. Sandel.. 1997). $24. Within sketches larger pictures the good society. 1995).50. liberals have no rightly of called for their communitarian chal lengers to offer not only critique their but alternative scenarios. The Pluralist Game: Pluralism. 26. why it excludes. Democracy's Discontent: America in Search xi of + a Philosophy (Cambridge: Harvard University Press.. penetrating and analysis the last few decades of liberal pluralism in the United States in his pluralism collection of essays written between 1963 and 1993. Francis Canavan. Ballard Stephens College Conscience Francis Canavan. Harvard political scientist Michael Sandel refines and applies his in-depth philosophical critique of liberalism and offers a fullblown republican alternative in his long-awaited interpretation.. possess. 1996). and reflect their own philosophical historical development. He successfully exhibits important contradictions of American liberal in theory and practice while sketching an alternative vision of politics and morality drawn primarily from classical and religious communitarian sources. versions of pluralism pretend to a Typical liberal fairness. While some liberals have become more conscious of the partic ularities and continue limits of their tradition (cf. but what it excludes. each author also his of own alternative version of pluralism.95. must and do include and exclude according to criteria which commitments. Three recent works do both. 1 . Vol. This fact is perhaps clearest and most damaging to liberal pluralist claims when we consider question the particular forms of life and thought liberalism excludes. Rawls's Political Liberalism). Thus the is not whether a particular intellectual tradition is exclusive. On the other hand. + 126 pp. Public $22. Emeritus offers a Professor insightful Political Science of at Fordham University. xi + Michael the Moral 192 pp. On Toleration (New Haven: Yale xii 417 pp. Michael Walzer.Whose Pluralism? Bruce W. and whether it is transparent to itself about its exclusivity. MD: Rowman & Littlefield. Liberalism and (Lanham. Fall second book.

and the relations between economy and polity. Law society. As Canavan clearly perceives. the dissolution of this unity "left millions of other . and aspects of his version of pluralism are vulnerable to the critiques Sandel Canavan provide. whether or not they were consciously aware of its func tion. pluralism and toleration. on dimensions: authors' liberalism and how and why ing pluralism as it does. the Institute for Advanced work Study in Princeton. Statecraft is soulcraft whether it appreciates or wills this result or not. In Canavan's account. lost unity of shared. the background philosophizing which leads each author to his conclusions about the limits of pluralism varies in cogency and completeness. had at least been more intelligible because the majority held a common biblically based faith and mo reflects a The lost unity of moral perspective in the biblical religion which Jews and Christians had rality. separate religion from morality and morality from politics are misleading. of Social theorist Michael Walzer. His an updated critique of of liberalism as a public philosophy. attempts to put communitarian emphases to in support of a larger left liberalism in his On Toleration. also subverted a consensus which Increased West secularization had circum scribed earlier American pluralism. creates an environment on social in which everyone has to live. In Canavan's account. Naturally. typical liberalist moves to and some view about what is good for cluding the over the outlook of citizens who strongly identify themselves in terms of religious commitments. the state in fact establishes secular individualism as ultimate. 76). the state "necessarily sets for a whole society. so I thematize the discus two main by focussing its pluralism. but or not limited to. it challenges to would be impossible to sion and cover these topics in this short space. His identification and recovery of a republican strand in American history and politics recasts the question of pluralism discussion for public discussion. indeed impossi ble. Earlier American pluralism. The categories overlap. the purported neutrality and inclusiveness of the lib eral pluralist state in matters of religion and morality is bogus. norms by privileging the autonomous individual. surely ranks cluding the best among very contemporary treatments. ex policy unavoidably express Hence. Canavan cites a number of Supreme Court decisions last thirty years which support this contention. Since Walzer mented version of still supports an aug liberalism. the the effects of recent Supreme secondary mediating institutions. Those who earlier championed pluralism did so against this biblically informed background.138 of a Interpretation Public Philosophy. All three volumes survey a wide range of renewal of issues including. Court decisions on freedom of speech and reli gion. however conflictual. in Rawls in Political Liberalism. and exerts a powerful influence has institutions" (p. As might each approach ends up defining and limit be expected. By seeking the lowest common denominator agreeable to the many and making law and policy accordingly.

it displaced institutions. to public Canavan notes. Certainly and American liberal pluralism is hardly neutral as capitalism any other model of economy. with -139 the feeling that they are now strangers in their land" own (pp. Canavan With Sandel and Walzer. sustained analysis of the liberalism and capitalism would go a long way toward he affinity between completing Canavan's treatment. Sandel's alone offers a sustained . had helped to flesh out religious community life. what areas out of the political realm and as leaving them to individual But again. schools. This reduction is itself the incessantly of a reiterated in the media and wider popular culture. what shall be left to private choice and judgment is itself a political decision. Canavan particular. "celebrate" either argu rights We and are nevertheless "diversity. Again for lack commonly and acceptable moral or the tension between ments over liberty equality basis for resolving for specifying their content. but the lack of moral agreement in creasingly typical acceptable American pluralism makes such judgments necessarily un to many. sees a drift toward secular state private secular monism over the last three decades in social-welfare regulation and As the increasingly took over various functions. he does rejection of commend cooperatives in passing. Given his A would presumably reject capitalism as well. such values quickly reduce to discussions of rights. The author very perceptively economic counterpart of ideal liberalism as capitalism and the free market. they have come to define the range of controversy between contemporary liberals and conservatives.Whose Pluralism? Americans 65-66). The communitarian vision of pluralism supports also needs fur ther development of an appropriate range of economic arrangements congruent with that vision. Yet of the three volumes. neutral and Apparently fail to democratic yet values such as liberty and equality also resolve pluralist conflict. So liberal pluralism again turns out not to be neutral. their best. By increased federal private religious at the appropriation of taxes for public education. but without developing the point at any length. hospi tals and social services were injured. individ liberty. A main means by which liberal pluralism attempts neutrality is by taking controversial choice. Cultural liberalism is even determined by this pursuit that it can no longer judge identifies the the most outrageous wrongs." equally faced with ever-increasing calls to In Canavan's reading. pluralism being urged be cause ual it is a condition which supports so liberalism. These institutions. Understood in individualist terms. He does note that argu ments in favor of abortion which treat a mother's womb as private property from which the unborn "tenant" may be evicted at will follow the logic between of capitalist ownership. It can only be made on the basis of an antecedent moral of judgment. but hostile toward conditions which make for thriving community. pluralism as a norm is the ultimate value of remain unresolvable. liberalism.

. on pain of contradiction. both cludes with conservative intellectually reasserting for private and legislatively.140 Interpretation of the relationship between economy and community flourishing. and mediating commu intellectual tradi not the state. we might have expected a note of despair in Canavan's conclusion. two main forms of contemporary social anguish demon strate the failure of the liberal project in America: fear that the moral fabric of . things look neutrality. to flourish. so Canavan is again on target when self-defeating relativism and he identifies actual contempo rary plurality as a dilemma rather than a cause celebre. again it is Michael Sandel the more detailed philosophical explanation of the nature of the relation tween self-identity and be pic community which would help motivate Canavan's ture. Genuine pluralism for Canavan qua is not primarily protection of the individual individual from group or state. Given his very critical assessment of the recent drift of affairs. the state should reduce its direct etc. Protestants and devout Jews. If anything. to make room for such groups in education. On the other hand. social services. those outside the wider biblical tradition Canavan com mends will likely reject his pluralism. Canavan nities "secondary" or the greatest primacy. but a situation in which individuals Here as members of various communities can who provides pursue essential human goods. That current liberal pluralism is in fact quite intolerant of strongly committed positions (particularly again underlines its own very inconsistent nonneutrality. One can but be reminded here of other forms of scepticism. to join in the struggle. so vision ought Canavan argues. but Canavan con "divisive" religious) as by urging orthodox Catholics (Canavan is Catholic). even more desperate for pluralist For the liberal pluralist claiming full equally and neutral inclusiveness has to or groups which admit. But Canavan's identification of the affinity between liberalism and capitalism development by itself nicely divides so-called economic ism) from the socially moral conservatism supports. mon gious to help stem the tide toward secular monism and by a com reli biblically based morality institutional life. conservatism (economic libertarian the biblical religion congruent with Canavan Taken to its logical terminus. His treatment analysis of the sort by more in-depth argument and Sandel In Sandel's account. that the reject views of individuals the celebration of pluralism are as valuable as their contradicto ries. morality so central volume is a set of papers rather than a systematic a problem poses a different kind of limitation. The fact that Canavan's treatment of needs supplementation often provides. public policy his critics have to argue why their moral as But to take precedence over the biblical tradition of to American cultural formation. cultural. tions to pass on are the essential and most defining role community. always reflects some moral vision. Groups with spiritual. creating accords greater social space Of the three authors. Thus the not pluralist must also celebrate not celebrating pluralism.

Sandel emphasizes the mislead ing and alienating idea of the self offered above all cording to that theory. and a notion of ends all capacity block the way. for instance. Sandel recovers an alternative and republican way of genuine self-government from which liberalism can be seen as a de cline. Ancient also had aspired to cultivate virtue goal of been longstanding in its citizens. rights apart to moral and religious views of from the good. with regard and national and collective control over life is unraveling and fear about lost individual life-goveming forces. As Sandel notes. Liberal ideals of neutrality citizens. The minimalist political liberalism Rawls now explicitly calls upon citizens a thick argues to bracket thick and moral and religious selves for the purposes of public question of deliberation decision-making. for Sandel and the republican tradition. to a solution to these problems. community. whole and good of rally desire to govern their own and identification with a larger They find there a fulfillment than is available to isolated individuals. of citizens In the liberal conception. since these all require description of the self. by the neutral liberal state to either identify or cultivate the virtues necessary for self-government helps account for the current crisis over lost control. When they tion. with others about what is true any or good. They natu common affairs. People are born for citizenship. religious duties. the self is value resides in its capacity to by contemporary liberal theory. ing of Again. cannot everyday do justice to the moral experience. explicit or use in by deliberating but simply for the fact that sovereign individuals As Sandel notes. this asocial render human good is misleading. Consequently. Ac else a pure individual whose highest own ends. popular psychology manuals make this promoting a virtual religion of the self in which there is no incentive on their content. both conceptually a freedom as the of the individual self to choose its own and practically. or even citizen obligation. As in Liberalism and the Limits of Justice. But the self conceived as unencumbered by prior moral definition is an abstraction which of is falsified by liberalism. the politics a neutral ideal of liberalism is not timelessly natural. we no choose its Choice longer of one's respect ends becomes views a kind of end in itself.Whose Pluralism? 141 family. Kantian versions obliga phenomena of family tions. the freedom tive. others' based have chosen them. as Sandel documents Failure through numerous primary sources. As identification more alien in the whole decline and citizens become to each other. Through detailed historical account of American public life from the foun ders to the contemporary scene. is seen primarily as nega They need protection from the state and each other in order to pursue their private ends. motivation for the mutual respect liberalism calls for is also undermined. even are deprived this sort of active community participa whatever elites their negative freedom is at the mercy of and participation do govern. Sandel raises the crucial why we should suspend such identity-making aspects of our selves . and this goal has American public policy.

beginning would "bracketed" at conception and their view to accept they in effect advocates are also to "bracket" be countenancing murder. thickly commitments unabashedly by family relations. The argument for liberalism from is self-defeating. community. and His alternative version the self. and promoting. moral. a contradiction. rightly observing respect that a practical interest in social and mutual does not automatically defeat any that "We cannot without other moral interest. but legal abor Sandel cites a provocative and against tion in effect simply grants their position. Sandel gets to the philosophical matter of by emphasizing that whether or competing views is true. to relative say that we should all respect each other because the truth is If "all truth is relative" is absolutely true. they express. not we should bracket depends on which relativism is no help either. In principle. Or we could relativize the value of respect. respect not follow. Sandel limit pluralism differently than liberalism? His of self-fulfillment civic and republican cision about ideal in communal deliberation is and de the social good certainly sets a different of parameter which for the discus constituted sion of pluralism. So Sandel pluralism. 20). then there is for are others' at least one truth which is not relative. and religious leads him to reject forms of pluralism primarily based upon. The devastation divorce society supports and and a di law have "choice" wreaked upon our virtue-based way of understanding Sandel's recovery of dealing with family law promoting would role- which brings good to moral accountability form and aims at the family as a for its members and the republic. telling on the of the parallel argument against moral bracketing from Lincoln Douglas heart issue of slavery. As Sandel correctly argues. His him to morally advocat seriousness about ethical rationality and truth allows and transparent public policy deliberation decision. judg Using the legal example of abortion. Sandel observes that if the Catholics were correct about human life abortion. We might just as well say that all views equally worthy of disrespect it How since none is true. seeing as one nonprivileged attitude and why would among other possibilities.142 when Interpretation it comes to questions of cooperation justice. question of what of By raising the economy best serve republi shows a can aims of self-government and the virtues which support it. Sandel toleration is justified in any given in question" He raises the same point whether notes determine moral ment case passing judgment in the on the practice (p. prochoice their views for public purposes." up ing what he terms a "mutual appreciation goods which would affirm peo ple and communities for the distinctive or other. Sandel advocate ends willingness to curb the pseudopluralism of hegemonic business interests. not their simple capacity to choose something . virtueless abstract vorce and individualism. Suspending moral name of toleration does not effect a neutral pluralism. But even if we substi views need tuted some other version of the relativist claim. regarding toleration. In both cases.

"The answer may be simpler than liberal political theory permits: the Nazis promote genocide and hate. and partisan way to which ignores of truth rationality. Yet he had acknowledged and of highlighted the importance of ethical rejects truth when it came to the content-neutrality position expression. Presumably. than his of open-ended republican deliberation ideal explicitly moral agreement upon The hope across a range of public as reaching the sort of policy issues that Sandel substantive calls for may depend stands it. Sandel is arguing account of moral content that public deliberation can and should take permits are before marching handed out. Yet the decisions a deliberation questions can be philosophically shallow. care to subordinate itself to reject public deliberation sup In a those who it? What does such a community lack of criteria which needs plementing by word. the same could be said about his ily law.Whose Pluralism? 143 a Altogether. Arguably. Walzer of toleration and coexistence. The difference the cause" consists in the content of the speech. Sandel rationality of recent Supreme Court decisions on free an ordinance could ban the Nazis from marching in Skokie. Michael Walzer agrees that liberal pluralism as it does need to resituated to address the increasing fragmentation of both personal and group life in the United States. or even malicious. Sandel needs in morality It could and national republican more elaboration and community defense religion other than noninterference? for "narrowness" "fundamentalism" in in order to save some of his own moral positions and certain examples which also illustrate them. "narrow" in his final further But further rejects the In the arguments Sandel moralism of his closing the fundamentalist without course of qualification. the substantive conclusions rights for blacks and protection against harassment of to proceed from a Jews in Skokie do seem biblically older informed moral sensi bility. To with a return Sandel's abortion example. raises and responds to a number of relevant objections questions are possible. Sandel's order. Sandel replies. while Martin Luther King sought civil rights for blacks. program and its associated pluralism make for tall Sandel himself chapter. notes the insufficiency of appeals problems to rights and abstractly fair procedures alone to address contemporary These problems vary depending upon the histori- . in general. To the liberal objection that if the bracketing. Indeed. There way would or be no foregone in conclusion about the outcome of of public deliberation one the other. it could as easily have banned King and his fol lowers. be Canavan suggests. That is. 90). in the nature of (p. why should the prolife advocate murder? compelling And why and argument recognize a public should the religious decision tantamount to allowing porate goods Sandel enumerates. Sandel may depend more on an substantive positions on fam American consensus of biblical morality recognizes. With Sandel. and which community which realizes the very cor is convinced of the truth of its "common" beliefs with practices. be added Sandel the offers about civil here that.

. so Walzer develops a suggestive regimes cal and political situation of various and useful typology of five tolerance analysis historical examples. but is unwilling to them of taxation fear" relieve would for state education. 70). Naturally. and 'family values' or of their own certainties about what (p. is right say) tradition. (p. Walzer largely responds by simply asserting his own secu lar liberal dogmatism. of a pluralism which isn't simply cannot fragmentation? We farious a population. "one hopes that they are justified schools will have exactly the effects that orthodox make their children .) Nor can we repair to . Walzer identifies the immigrant society rather than a nation-state with republican foundations like France. Walzer fragmentation which have led to the neither Walzer's Americans have is nor need anything in but certain political principles and toleration more like a restatement of the problem than a key to its resolution. Walzer is willing for these orthodox parents to their children to private schools (if they can afford it). as an harbor republican hopes. since we are too multi United States In his typology of toleration regimes. (It would be intriguing to see a published debate between Sandel and Walzer over this question. this is an omission which pluralism. He doubts that liberal politics be sustained were all children to go into private sectarian schools. Canavan. attempts While Walzer everyone's rejects by groups with moral to "control behavior of in the name of a supposedly common (Judeo-Christian. ." wrong" of orthodox parents that ant of religious and that parents send the public "toler may Walzer responds that. Maclntyre. In the face of contempo ticular political culture of rary critiques like those of Sandel. With both Sandel revival of various and Canavan. To the fears state-mandated versions of tolerance education error. With Sandel. of and others. so the unity which comes from that richer foundation for citizenship is unavailable to us.144 Interpretation societies. Religious parties. life are we of to uncover the resources necessary for a revived political the sort Walzer wants. for example. so he opposes a voucher system. and social Where then. Walzer acknowledges that liberalism is a substantive and par its own. Yet his recognition that liberalism is one tradition among others does not lead Walzer to offer a philosophical defense of it. Walzer here in the secondary associations. This highlights the social abstracting from a variety of dynamics which inevita bly shape the possibilities and problems of toleration acknowledges that the in particular societies. common roots of alienation and claim that its strong individualism. Walzer kind of hyperindividualism cele brated in postmodern conceptions of the self is both alienating and corrosive of sees a part of the solution citizenship. 77). seriously many It lends particular judgments the and weakens Walzer's same proposals for American which ad hoc quality agendas be leaguered Just Unjust Wars. To his credit. with early roots in Protestant and English history. Yet by keeping to the larger liberal pluralist picture. together with leaves intact the current crisis. according to Walzer. ought to be barred from running in elections.

" - 145 be of a biblically informed liberal moral consensus. Altogether then. rationality in about we do not and after seriously engage questions of truth and we ethics.Whose Pluralism? what remains "intolerant. since that would Within the cannot confines of the position Walzer embraces. But reading Sandel. have less to assert reason than ever to relinquish that good. and the alternatives for liberalism are either to lack transparency its own particu lar value-structure or see it without philosophical defense. . it is difficult to overcome how Walzer's slightly revised liberal pluralism could either the problems Canavan and Sandel elaborate or provide genuine hope for revived public life.

marginalia from Strauss's personal copies of these writings are published here for the first time.-). XIV. be indispensable for all serious und zugehorige Schriften Analyse der Bibel- dust jacket. Abravanel's Philosophical (1936). Cohens Wissenschaft Spinozas Das (1924). Tendency Eine Ort der Vorsehungslehre and der Ansicht Das Political Teaching (1937). more than a quarter of which Quelques are published here for the first 0n time: Philosophie und Gesetz Der (1935). und Volume 2: Philosophie 1997.. 1933-1935). cloth with English) many important.-).. It study of Strauss's philosophy in the future.i VERLAG J. Testament Spinozas (1932). Der Erinnerung an Lessing (1937). remarques sur nach la science politique de Mai'monide de Farabi Maimunis (1937). previously unknown writings and letters. cloth with dust jacket. numerous previously Karl unknown letters from his philosophical correspondence with Klein. French. DM 90 Die Zur - (subscription price: DM 78. Gerhard Kriiger. (1921). with critical editions of the German manuscript of of (1935) along Die the variants of the English translation as well as the book- length manuscript Religionskritik des Hobbes (ca. DM 90 critical editions of (subscription: DM 78. H. METZLER LEO STRAUSS COLLECTED WRITINGS IN SIX VOLUMES Edited by Heinrich Meier ISBN 3-476-01222-0 This the critical edition will include all of Strauss's and will publications and through 1937 in original languages (German. B. in the original languages (German English). XXXIV. and Lowith. Erkenntnisproblem in der philosophischen Lehre Fr. Volume 1: Die Religionskritik Spinozas 1996. The from Strauss's personal copies of these writings are published here for the first time. and others published here for the first time. Gesetz - Friihe Schriften - 635 pp. 1921 to Contains the 29 et essays from the years 1937. Gershom Scholem. 434 pp. Bibelwissenschaft Spinozas marginalia und seiner Vorlaufer (1926). . The Religiose Lage der Gegenwart (1932). politische other Volume 3: Hobbes' Wissenschaft und zugehorige - Briefe politische Contains. Contains the critical editions of Religionskritik Spinozas (1930). Schriften 1936 Konspektivismus and more. Jacobis (1929). among Wissenschaft writings. Jacob In addition.

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