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OF POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY
Robert D. Sacks
The Significance The Book
in Genesis 1-11
Chapters 39-42 65
Socratic Eros in Plato's
Revolution in Burke's Letter to the
Sheriffs of Bristol
the Twofold Presentation of the
Power Doctrine in Nietzsche's Thus Spoke
Frank Schalow Bruce W. Ballard
Hilail Gildin, Dept.
Philosophy, Queens College
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Robert D. Sacks
The Significance The Book
in Genesis 1-11
Socratic Eros in Plato's 65
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
Frank Schalow Bruce W. Ballard
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the Babel-builders. Nimrod. that of the nomadic Third. man. divine or conventional. antitechnical. I is wish not to argue that. few the pride or hubris desires to compete with. the city and tower with its top in the heavens. the city is impious in their intentions: Cain. failing to note that in each instance there are redeeming features. with superfluous and which arts. the city is connected with land ownership. Why this? One finds in the traditional commentaries a number of overlapping themes. in Genesis 10. in which the unified human race attempts to build Babel. not paying enough attention to the different contexts in these characters appear. from the to be political-theological perspective of the Biblical Finally. second or at least reasonable those characters. Jewish and Christian. 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. and thus opposed to an allegedly purer form of life. and the which Babel-builders. it makes funda mental interpretive errors. Fall 1998. Finally. associated with and antipolitical. of the effort they are making is indeed narrator. was was often sur prisingly antiurban. the city is associated with improper aspirations toward human greatness or even human divinization. 26. the Babel-builders are not evil in condemned For. or even defy. The thing I wish to argue excuses. as argue. interpretation. 1 . although intent. No. in light the Babel project. 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. and in Genesis 1 1. Traditional exegesis of these stories. has not yet made among inroads into the human men at a time heart. herds Nimrod. as a per Nimrod's kingdom of cities understood as a tyranny but fectly when reasonable attempt to establish a political ordering law. it is said that Cain (or possibly his son Enoch) built the first city.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. those who are supposed to be First. and it prejudges the motives of the characters in all three cases. the Lord God. in its urge to theory moralize about the lives and motives of the early city-builders. It improperly fuses the characters and accomplish life ments of Cain. where it is stated that Nimrod ruled over (and possibly built) cities. 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. Vol. Second. the the In this paper I wish to make three arguments.
has had abuse upon by scores of Jewish and interpreters for at least two millennia. Noting that unlike his Genesis 5 counterpart Seth. legion. Traditional One Hostility with Toward Cain and His Line must begin Cain. This negative portrayal of Cain colors the event with he is associated. is not said to have been born after Adam's (hence conclude that he is actually the offspring of death Sammael. 1. his religious performance is faulty. I will propose my own tentative account of the Bible's moral-political evaluation of the city. THE CRITIQUE OF THE CITY IN TRADITIONAL EXEGESIS The traditional commentaries on Genesis are only enough to Genesis Rabbah. First.1 His motives and his spiritual and the spiritual character of with his descendants. Augustine's these City of God. antipolitical atmosphere. fices to the most Thus. With this rather unauspicious head start in life. I the inadequacy handling with of the political themes interpreters' traditional remarks the fine details of comparing the the Biblical text. anti- I have constructed kind I of composite account of the technical. and establishes among interpreters recorded antiurban. he offers (according to some of the rabbis) the samples of inferior his produce. the an which founding of the city.3 or. Cain's very birth is suspect. I have used tateuch. Cain cannot be expected to God's) image. that is. This is why he becomes a murderer and Abel. I will present the political themes which can gleaned from the discussion of Cain. Fi by nally. the first city. often little basis in the text. they Eve and the angel of produce much good. of the Next. different are all trying to blur the differences and notes). In fus ing (they own.4 I Interpretation will proceed in the be following manner. Cain.3-5). Nimrod and the will Babel-builders in show some representative premodern commentaries. antipolitical tendencies of commentaries am not the Jewish and Christian traditions. Cain. Abravanel's reveal some representative tendencies. if the quality is acceptable.2 kills the son truly in God's image. a and Calvin's Commentary on the Pen Commentary on Genesis. 4. Out of antiurban. Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. and I have consulted Specifically. 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. When he sacri Lord (Gen. between them properly distinguished in the text tendencies of establish some general but merely trying to which I can set my against interpretation. according to some of the rabbis. have all been impugned. the refuse. . heaped who is traditionally him credited with founding Christian character. A.
The he gives City in Genesis 5 paltry amount after finishing most of it off himself (Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. Calvin on the other.5. his city and people. explaining that "Cain also chose to engage in artful things and ground. vol. Cain's tion: p. ruthless The commentators are regarding Cain's descendants. Augustine sees the city which Cain builds as an allegory of the City of Man. Cain practised a purely external religion and did not really serve God in his heart. and David. another a drunkard. technical to run away which occupation represents the perennial nonluxurious human ten dency from the simple. supplement it equally regarding Cain's motives. 29). 8. 21). career. declares that Cain's other activities (unmentioned in the Biblical text) must have been evil. another choice. some rabbis say that he. p. 153). 256). but with his hy pocrisy. 1. and do not hesitate to invent facts in order to condemn them. are supplied by the .5 Cain's desire to settle down more of a shepherd. life into a sophisticated. p. 8. Isaac. 2. however. that human society which seeks only earthly felicity and denies our supernatural end (City of God. XV. 192).2). his son Enoch) which would live forever (Genesis Rabbah. The names of Irad. says bluntly "Cain. vol. like other hoped to have immortality through a (presumably. 21). we fundamental difference I over the worth of settled agricultural life. (City of God. (without etymological argument) to of mean sexual "rebellion" (Genesis Rabbah. 255). Augustine takes great pleasure in repeat About Cain's edly noting that the line murderers. Abravanel sheds light on the rabbinic hostility Cain's farming simpler. was the proto type of all the great prophets and leaders of Israel. Cain's leper" occupa no good came of a (Genesis to Rabbah. Rabbi Eliezer of allows The Genesis Rabbah. p. that it in fact can be interpreted as commanded by God in Genesis 1 and and 2 (Calvin. dience for Rabbah see a Contrasting sufficiency and obe Abravanel and the Genesis and life of on one hand Rabbi Eliezer. who were themselves shep herds: Abraham. and Cain Lamech Metusael. Noah. Jacob. Moses. 1. p. The details Lamech's mistreatment of his wives. 1. "wicked" "house" building of a city. XV. Cal declares that there was nothing wrong with Cain's grain. 17. Augustine. absent from the Biblical text. Those interpreters. Mehujael. and Uzziah lusted after the ground. to will return later." therefore became a tiller of the "natural" whereas Abel was satisfied with the Abel. One became a murderer. says Abravanel. 5.4 The traditional do not commentators are a condemn little lighter on Cain in one respect: they and ground unanimously (4. Calvin Cain's choice of occupation as a tiller of the grants that this occupation can be laudable and holy. and Lamech are all said vol. and them. Augustine. This activ fundamental difference allows room which for a more positive view of Cain's ities and intentions. God intended with us. such as Augustine and Calvin. who only a are not nature of vin willing to supplement the Genesis story quite so blatantly regarding the Cain's offerings. that with which originated the earthly city began and ended with is. finding nothing wrong with Cain's sacrifice. Augustine says nothing negative.
like beasts. Nimrod fares only slightly better than Cain in traditional "beginning" He liter actions ally cannot even make a onto the Biblical stage without his . In sum. Such is the picture which traditional exegesis of Genesis 4 tends to yield. In general. XV. 217-22).22). Cain's generation were sinners and rebels who thought p. In who se women are the "daughters men" justified both pp. thus more ing a way for his ancestor Cain's sister to be perpetrated efficiently (ibid. Traditional Hostility Toward Nimrod accounts. 238). duced Seth's line into waywardness. violence and In a more analytical vein. they did not need God (Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. Naamah. the op for him the arts are goods. pp. superfluous sin. Abravanel argues that the were destruction which prevailed which before the Flood directly linked to the p. Calvin refuses to condemn 257).22. did not yet exist). the he founded. either by the introduction by their desire for He and city which wealth.). his female descendants seduced the only godly people into his line have few if any redeeming features. with political life) fall under a dark shadow.). creating the universal degeneration which lines' being wiped out by the Flood (City of God. the former being. They eyes. Taking posite the Cain line on such grounds. His birth is suspect.) (which. Calvin notes the wickedness of the atmosphere in which the arts arise. and all its connections (with the arts. Like the rabbis. these unions produced the wicked giants who were wiped out in the Flood (pp. 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. went about stark naked. and 159). however. God" at least more carnal in their interests. his founding or even of and/or of a insincere. acquisitiveness Cain bequeathed to his descendants (Abravanel. 237-40). 160-62). it can be said that Cain does not have a very good public image. with human law making. Cain's line is uniformly contrasted unfavorably with Seth's line. and gifts from God (Calvin. the latter who lived more virtuously. sang and played in honor of idols (ibid. 2. and because of this. his taking up an act of city is vainglory of vio defiance of God. In Calvin these "sons of are Augustine virtually and Calvin the Cainite self-conscious that they are the Church (Calvin. of p. his male descendants increased the level of weapons or lence in the world. view. far as we can tell from Genesis 4. 160).). flagrantly about violated the naked with rules concerning incest (p. Cain's daughters went painted tempting the angels to fall. if not being the "sons of God" completely evil.6 Interpretation (ibid. he affirms the vileness of Lamech's polygamy and waxes eloquent about Lamech's cruelty and inhumanity (ibid. Tubal-Cain's given (about whom absolutely no details as are in Genesis). his offering to God was shoddy of farming is judged ambivalently.
The City in Genesis 7 being be a condemned. Augustine tells us that Nimrod. 260). Finally. if it mighty hunter before the mighty hunter "against" seems bad enough for not Nimrod that his even grant hunting is interpreted hunter. as the-verb "to (halal).4). Since Nimrod is a slave. XVI. instead of "beginning" to multiply upon the earth. 175). p. oppressor. 3). to "rebel" in their calling upon the name of the Lord. was based on a sham (Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. who was consigned to slavery by Noah in Genesis 9. "beginning" is is verb. There is other evidence that Nimrod. against the order of things that he should a king (Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. to degenerating calling "rebelling. Second. his claim to might. From the sense "pro fane. de Rabbi Eliezer. 317)." earth. pp. like all hunters. 2. the ancestor of Israel. he a 10. is a deceiver." sym bolizes the Rome (Jacob Neusner. p. And. Thus. man. First. and. but mention rather. 174). it is p. too. mighty and thus they can liberally 'rebelled' when he was a one in the earth" (Genesis Rabbah.26 are said. which is the normal meaning of the piel form of the same root. XVI. p. of course. some of the rabbis do say he fooled people into thinking he could cow fierce beasts. in Genesis Rabbah. in later Jewish literature (Neusner tells us) he oppressive power of us that "hunter. and they the evil men of pre-Flood "rebelled" days. in must company whose as the Cainites and their offspring. 2. be evil. so negatively. pp. being a a beast than a human he was also the originator of more like being. tried to kill Abraham he was young. here found in the hiphil form. vol. deriving all wicked things." the rabbis feel justified in translate: "Nimrod vol. "began" 2. Nimrod is lived until evil the time of because. Genesis 10. 420-21. Another thing which counts against rule Nimrod is his be being a grandson of Ham. Nimrod the city-builder evil. Calvin tells He further argues that the statement that Nimrod was a the Lord (Genesis Lord. being a mighty hunter." who "begin" upon the name of the Lord. such evil to multiply upon the earth and the pre-Flood gi announced with the (ibid. tyranny (Calvin. although it is not mentioned in Scripture. 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. they supply other examples of wicked people things. however. 60-61). Nimrod. Esau.). and destroyer of earth-bom creatures (City of God. p. In case anyone should think the rabbis are stretching the meaning too much. was obviously a furious Nimrod. is bad for two reasons. is reminiscent of the other hunter in Genesis. and hence were actually They mention the people of in not Genesis 4.9) means that Nimrod was a rebel (City of God. who 4. as master of the pagan lands out of which when Abraham came. which is what persuaded people to let him them. he Abraham. . Esau. was miraculously thwarted (Pirke vol. In this attempt. 38). he was the foe of his brother Jacob. that is. he Genesis Rabbah. who.8 reads: "And Cush begat Nimrod: he began to begin" profane" Genesis Rabbah interprets the verb "to mighty one in the (halal). ants same Obviously.
4. the Lord. They they being given the earth. p. Calvin Calvin. the plain on which Babel was erected was in the land of Shinar. takes on a associated with and his kingdom. to displace him. means. like Nimrod. 324). Both their deeds and their motives are entirely wicked. p. God's people do not rest con move. with the upper part. was the area of his king dom. In any case. at signifies also that they made an on 261. and. vol. and Jacob. "this they are rebelling to (Genesis Rabbah. do. 1. they are not satisfied with want the are are trying to challenge God. again. it is said in Genesis 10 that Nimrod founded a city called Babel. 51). the two intertwined in traditional commentary. he was often assumed to have been not Although the Biblical text does to do with the Babel project of its initiator." but are on the 50). Second. to make a "name" themselves (Gen. Nimrod becomes Babel project due to responsibility for the Babel project. bad scent.4). as I will point later. which is often assumed to chapters are be the city discussed in Genesis 1 1 Thus. according to Genesis 10. The rabbis object that in Genesis 11. the lower part of the world. for idol They filled the sin of pride. 2. sinfulness of He the cruel godlessness of pride and the pagan empires. The Babel-builders. 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. being settling and building in "settled. Isaac. (Genesis Rabbah. like Abraham. as in the case of Cain. Traditional Hostility Toward the Babel-Builders explicitly state that Nimrod had anything Genesis 1 1. worldly glory been founded with the set against righteousness. pp. 3. 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. a city. as one might expect." are "rebels. There is odious reason to question the connection out between Nimrod and Babel. There are other flaws in the Babel-builders' motives. probably vol. want 2. XVI. for they p. 260). in an summary. vol. is repudiated by much of the tradition because he represents was impious rebel against God and tyrannical over mankind.2 they decide to vated by Satan (Genesis Rabbah. too (Genesis Rabbah. tent "settle" in the land of Shinar. 2. for two reasons. 49-50). 2.8 Interpretation Nimrod. the purpose of this section is to discuss the faults of the Babel-builders insofar as they can be discerned without reference to Nimrod. needless to say. His city." "and this they begin to which. scale Olympus and dethrone Jove in pagan mythology (City of God. the the Ham line. . right motives. 11. and the is condemned because it was the brainchild of Nimrod. therefore. "Settling" is moti vol. In p. The tradition uniformly condemns the builders at Babel. heavens. which. the Babel-builders are reminiscent . could hardly him have Urban life. which p. First. do" translated into rabbinic. and vol.
which. if the materials they supplied were . heir of a slave. being Esau's way. The the city. the art of bringing people together to build a decent civil order. The city cannot provide for security against death. God's do not need the political life of the city. 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. without God's help by They purely human means. Abravanel argues. The city-builders of Genesis 1-11 all have unsavory are They or are fugitives from God ters. the human beings who are desire to build is unnecessary. and tyranny over others. is grounded in folly. It is their politics as much as their materialism that is at fault. More generally. are proud. in order to establish the stated. are quite are not Babel-builders is how much not they add to the text. then of Seth. thinking to build structures which will keep their names alive forever. Cain being rejected in favor first of Abel. Abravanel thus. only God can do these things. B. in criticizing the Babel-builders. then. 4. is inferior to the way of the Politics. 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. sinners. Ruling comes from Nimrod. idola They wish to build a settled and secure life or even against wishes. it cannot give one immortal life or even an immortal name. They story. and even actions appropriate moral of each This might not be a bad procedure. Summary of the Traditional Critique of the City associations. Nimrod being things some part of the Ham line which Noah subjects to Shem and Japheth. but to conspire against and a God. rejection of God. which willing to supply motives which are recorded. says Abravanel. They are from the wrong lines. or rebels against God. is ated. are equally stained by association the wrong sort of people. and is associated with the violence of patriarchs." us make "let build city"). at worst it is temptation to idolatry. manages to slip in the moral that the way of Torah is higher than the way of the Greeks. apparently picking up on the language a of mutual exhortation in 11. they God's murderers. Nimrod. and the rule of with human beings by others. The arts come from the children of vengeful bigamist Lamech. desire of walking away from God rather than with him. the arts. hunting.The of City us in Genesis 9 the godless Cain. The city. At best it is a necessary evil in a fallen world. political which go with cooperation. who defined man as a political animal. not rendered suspect by the fact that the first is people to be political cooper to build a better cities life.3-4 ("let brick.
" they ask us to accept too much on faith.10 Interpretation role of providing plausible explanations for what is recorded. The rule text can mean whatever the interpreters want it to mean. between the pre-Flood and the Babel-builders' desire for a name. and the Babel-builders the reasons for the antiurban are evil. point. demanding us to allow not only the rendering of the hiphil the claims made are simply too far "profane. Some of the claims are errors. since Lamech fathers sons who are . The interpreters have already decided that Cain. Cain's line ended with a murderer is also untrue. and Babel. to justify their They contrast can indeed appeal to a number of textual details. the errors the traditional interpretation is inadequate. believe. There are Nonetheless. Augustine's most claim that translators. Shinar. 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. They attribute Cain's birth to the angel They Sammael. They can point to the parallel between Cain the farmer and and Abel the shepherd. the but the rabbis stretch it beyond the resemblance may be significant. far beyond this. 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 connection between Abraham left the eastern world ruled Nimrod. when they assert without philological "idol. to Nimrod's connection with and associations upon Ham. and enough reading. The addition of legendary material and the use of verbal tricks are not interpretation. philologically unacceptable by found Nimrod unappealing. but some of fetched. Among the following: Augustine's claim that Nimrod was a hunter is considered who "against even God" by Calvin." but also the idiosyncratic "profaning" equation of with "rebel word Again. even without the extraneous material. if all the etymologies and legendary material were excluded. and would maintain this even reasons. they condemn Nimrod for his paganism and his attempt to murder Abraham." "begin"-"profane" breaking as the "begin" piel ling. they in the Biblical text. to the fact that by Nimrod. more relevant interest. Another mology noticeable feature is the Jewish This interpreters' fascination with ety and other word play. again might not be bad in itself. to the connection be tween Nimrod Esau the hunters. For example. all interpretive control is lost. to the fact that Nimrod to the similarity is reminiscent of the evil "mighty "men of men" wiped out name" in the Flood. and other are facts simply do not fit into the antiurban picture. Sec that there is ond. and so on. to the between the violence of Cain and Lamech and the rise of urban life and the arts. for two First. which a plenty of loose connections traditional interpretation can be founded. however. the evil of Cain and the others is axiomatic in the interpretive tradition in to my present which they have been would argue trained. however. they are merely the justifications. Nimrod." reasoning that the "name" in the Babel story all mean can only mean or that the names of Cain's lies descendants I "rebellion. that the real problem of the traditional interpreters deeper.
Ham's son." The interpretation same such is. are not rounded the association who up in pens of the hunter and with is peculiar. Further. 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. For shepherds (like Abel) kill things. he infers it in infers. Then there are the the slave Ham is untrue. Abravanel. In fact. Nimrod. hardly closer the model of the political man. Augustine all lifestyle. because he was a hunter and hunters kill things. is his sacrifice said supposed his sacrifice. The inter Augustine and the rabbis that Nimrod must have been unneces sarily violent and tyrannical. could we expect Cain to build anything but a "worldly city. rather. these are nity. if God will then. Yet the text is that God did nor not gaze unto Cain and imputed to Cain.The not murderers of City in Genesis 11 but inventors. in a parallel manner. undertook the Babel project on his own. no evil motive is to be flawed in either intention or Similarly. and Asshur in Genesis 4 and 10. and the later Israelites) kill their cattle. The common interpretation that Nimrod to aid all the project. since not Ham but facts that do not fit. is feeble. not supplementation that Cain's offering is hypocritical. execution. Canaan's brother Cush and Cush's son Nimrod are not slavery included in the curse." Again. or that he ordered the people him. Cain is to to build his city out of vainglory. further." not help him build "lusting after the laws to a heavenly that ground. If Israel is not wicked . tilling it. runs against of the clear sense of the text in that of Genesis 11. and that the city to protect him. but he does order to wicked derive this from textual evidence. text with uncharitable motives. out of the desire for a name. which makes "children men. too their sheep. the entire race. And settled farmers (like Cain. Further. the rabbis rage against Cain for is. because he does not keep for its entire life before killing it. 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. Babel but not in the case Cain. The rabbis' claim that Nimrod shares the character Canaan. The text would seem was suggest that his motive was fear of being killed. the shepherd who sells his wool and mutton or in spirit to the city than is the hunter trapper who is self-sufficient. that Cain had a says justify God. The hunter is the loner. the city falling to his arrows. lives away from the city The landed farmer with his rural commu in the marketplace. His victims enjoy God's before as castrated. the text says that Cain believes he is hidden from God's face. How. and God does not contradict Cain on this point. but say nothing against Moses who one? prescribes govern Israel's settled agricultural life. They they are by the farmer. is cursed to in Genesis 9. the hunter is less violent. there is bad reasoning in the traditional pretation of constructions. 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.
for wanting land exactly
of the what
the pre-Flood men are said to
why is Cain's motive so disreputable? Again, in multiplying upon the earth, but that is
do in Genesis 1.
their attempt at
out at as a rebellion? as motivated
Finally, why is Tubal-Cain's invention by the desire to make swords rather than
Certainly, his father
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
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
Cain is frightened, slighted,
Nimrod in Genesis 10 displays
no wicked motives or
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
would not reflect upon
work, then, to be done if
to articulate a coherent
in Genesis 1-11.
C. THE TEACHING ABOUT THE CITY 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
a much more positive
light than the
tradition sometimes suggests.
body am building
interpretation, but in its
I follow here comes, oddly enough, from the more unorthodox moments. For I
upon the work of
Eugene Combs, Kenneth Post, and Robert Sacks, indebted to Midrashic sources such as the Genesis Rabbah.
In the Midrashic writings,
of a a
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
strive to establish
sees the and
to the problem
God is willing
to work with and, under certain
with classification of
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.
his grain, probably
harder than Abel has
tried to obey God's the
to raise his sheep.
apparent commandments. and
God tell Adam to
to till the garden (Gen. 2)? Did not God tell Adam that
from Eden he
land for his food (Gen. 3)? One
He is, in
more qualified applicant who
the job to the boss's nephew, or perhaps to an affirmative action program. As a
victim of apparent which
follows, but it
so perverse as
make out. another nonmalicious account
that God preferred a sacrifice of an animal over that
that the sacrifice of a human
better (Genesis Rabbah,
248-49)? One does
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
is discounted, it is
not so clear that
it is true (4.7), but God does not explain Cain any instructions about how to live. In
Genesis 9. That
nothing to anyone about how to live is, God seems to be waiting to see if
man can rule
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
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
to be the
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,
Perhaps God thinks his
ence, but Cain clearly does
implies his continuing pres God therefore allows Cain to
dwell in the land
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
the state of nature, with no law
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
Isaac Friedman has
in fact, it has rather the first city is an be
of a new
Jacques Ellul; 11, 49-61). The founding of life, one which may prove to
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
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
to have understood God's
his line. Cain clearly did wrong, forgiveness of Cain in the
most perverse possible manner
(i.e., God does
have to do I
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,
though a genuine theme of
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
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
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
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
that We may now be able to fathom the Calvin Nimrod was a "mighty hunter. either built by or Nimrod in said to dom.1-7) to be enforced. cities a son of Shem. an a world organized on the world by the new political seems to be improvement before the Flood. naming the lands and peoples descending from and Japheth. The next a region called in Shinar. The new begin ning. families (mishpahoth) Shem. and since they too are related. This time. the new creation as it were. Recall that in Genesis 9. we must remember and that that such a form of rule was very common in ancient times. whenever the tribal or them. 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.19). One wicked one. Thus. sons of Noah are obedient in the way that the sons of Adam were never said to be: they "overspread" the whole earth overspreading. the city arises. a slight modification to Genesis 1 . without Thus.1-7). therefore. which had no such structure discernible. The Bible acknowledges that good kings can exist." Asshur. The first cities are or comes to rule." earth becomes peoples of common nations. in the east. amicably dividing the world themselves." for the Biblical statement and Augustine saw this as indicating was savagery and oppression. that populated not merely by individuals but by descent speaking a common tongue and occupy ing a traditional land. these Nimrod either builds group arises in the east as well. something is added: God gives the first laws. which relied too much on we are innate human told. It also helps maintain concord between stay together. the between Cain nation. however. that Nimrod's rule was a One might even argue that. among Japheth separate violence. Abel. (9. both over Israel and over other nations (cf. the goodness. must not conclude. Genesis 10 documents this family by family. for the laws of God (Gen. in this overspreading. they occupy it as they were meant to. the "nations. If this automatically and a new political ordering suggests ruthless power tyranny to modem ears. 9. The peacefulness of the process reminds one of the separation of Abraham and Lot (Gen. which are life. the race of Adam is being given a second chance at life. if we are watching a new creation. Nimrod is word have begun his "kingdom" in the first in Shinar. suggests in which one will rule over many. those restraining murder and improper diet (9. In this new creation. which echoed Genesis 1 generally. Since. 13). is. Ham. The familial basis of nations seems to offer the possibility of internal concord within each nation. will have a legal dimension absent from the old. the Biblical narrator would not auto matically have assumed such a rule to be evil. There is another interpretation. The "king occurring in Genesis for the first time. and and seems an improvement on the relationship unit. God's command and In this context of obedience to family solidarity. Abimelech in Genesis 20). the migrating offspring of Shem. Ham.The similar City in Genesis 15 It is as instructions in language that is very strongly reminiscent of Genesis 1. built by Asshur. people need to have some kind of authority set over a tribal or monarchical nature.
and so did his empire. least some of the nations which legitimately source. Genesis 1 allows implicitly taught that man was to be vegetarian. first hunter. at hunting makes He may not have been him the hunter par example of the new. men ruling men). but multiple vengeance driven by unre (mamlakhah) introduces into the world more stable and orderly. good. unlike Lamech's. 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.4) or the Babel (1 1. but human for up as prey beings. kings are one possible source of law. and that Nimrod's hunting is not in itself a his cities. Nimrod does not boast about himself. from the above discussion. Nimrod. how to be a "hunter.8) and before the Lord (10. then. in fact. I represents a political would argue. new order higher than the Note Nimrod does also that the text not seek a builders of any motive of vanity to Nimrod. the text is which teaching at that the rise of Nimrod possibility is new and. Nimrod does not name any cities after himself or after not attribute as "name" does his son. in which other forms of suffering must have been prevalent (starvation after crop failure. may not be pretty. did the mighty men of old (6." can one fault Nimrod? He is person said the first in the text said that is. Their sins cannot be imputed to him on the strength Thus. One can grant that a king may become a one must also grant that a king can establish the rule of law. God-sanctioned It is true that Nimrod. Nimrod became famous. the first have taken advantage of the new bequest God has "might" given. Genesis 9 to him to be person carnivorous.23-24). In this context. but it is perhaps less harsh than the pre-Flood world. may remind us of the wicked men before the Flood. at overspread the earth at least potentially. basis to nor of an adjective alone. of a any more.9). which consisted rule in Nimrod's prescribes moderate and measured punishments. not speak of upon the "dominion" over the animals which are now given "fear and animals. but his literally and hence the most striking excellence. For these reasons. At God's com the rule of mand are ruled not by kings. condemn be evil. The likely to make men hopeless or pre-Flood world. Nimrod and his city compare favorably with the Cain line and its city and the Babel-builders their city. but those men were characterized by neither hunting hunting. but it is others who note his greatness on the earth (10. but it is less it has possibilities for something desperate. one must conclude that cannot as such. and as did Lamech (4. "mighty" being "mighty" a hunter. Finally. as did Cain (4. the order of creation. city building.16 Interpretation God does dread" made. by God's . The new world contains harsh (men killing animals. Kings may (I Samuel 8). we must ing was Lamech's. I would suggest.17). In important respects.4). strained passion. vulnerability to random killing). that the rule of a hunter may symbolize the over urban civilization improvements elements of the new world over the old. note that which the only version of law and order hitherto obtain something tyrant.
28). it to be a certain un populating." therefore are separated and moved over the earth in a more unnatural and violent manner. is by Calvin. the Babel-builders' adventure of mastering. Further. 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. in one place. something.4). process. seems to have nothing to do seems storming heaven defying God. by natural a by (literally or figu the refuse Adam. then. No one people (which is why I would con- . The "sons ratively) of reproducing and nonviolently occupying the earth. in a its top in the heavens. They one spot. settled on Genesis 9 that they should fill the earth. of super-city with together. to obey God. 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. that is. their fear of being a inward-looking attitude. They heavenward (11. They "scattered. The 11." of perhaps educated obey God. This desire runs counter to God's all and commandments of want Genesis 1 to build upward. be was afraid of safe. Regarding this story. in the Babel there features grant. are there is a a justification for the traditional however. like Cain's. wants them to the earth (1. I certain turn to the Babel story. the language of mutual entreaty. 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. united brotherly love. of willingness to take on the adventure of human life. 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. who have not learned the lesson that the Flood. case of Babel is not exactly typical city. and he. and in what respects their ambitions legitimate. They want live. and enjoying the earth. but it is not to be so lightly condemned as it the rabbis. 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. Finally. too. close even antiurban exegesis. and Augustine. The their cautiousness." is only fitting. His proj may be ambiguous.4). scattered. is. God at the end of purpose. turns his prowess toward the ruling of peoples. speaking one language. Babel-builders is. He. aim spreading master to many spots. The with sin of the Babel-builders. God wants them to move outward. as of (11. Rather. It "scattered. The "sons men" Noah.5). I think. p. is perhaps reminiscent Cain's Yet motives. kind people of Babel do to not wish to be "scattered" upon the earth (Gen. among these Combs and Post point out. the descendants of Flood.The sion a ect City in Genesis 17 mighty hunter. the language of unity and solidarity (Combs and "rules" Post. too. 428). if it and was a sin.
" which are "kingdoms" connected with essentially families writ large. they on together as equal partners toward a goal is not them but chosen by themselves. unified world-state. God. speaking. established by the "sons of Noah" of Genesis 10.18 tend Interpretation Nimrod had nothing to do work with the construction of the Babel which of Genesis imposed con 11). will and to give it. Abraham will continue in the tradition of obedience a not Further. built. It is more likely that the Babel- "name" for their project to christen the marvellous urban struc they have created. wanting as is fact. his people who accepted the limitations of of nationhood. they dream. but that does not necessarily imply rebellion against rebelling against builders want a ture God. This form of social organization is in trast to the forms described in Genesis 10. the situation be irreparable. are not malicious. is that it is not for human beings to be of utterly that there and arising a different ways of peaceful. they do not even mention him. In fact. and seem to be peaceful and nonviolent. The forms of govern men" ment. a permanent essence which. may be and the ual or become dedicated to bad ends. They do not wish to God. and themselves. God cannot allow it to be The Babel-builders. Cain may have been proud of his city. but he will obtain the reward sought "name" by the Babel-builders will not Genesis 11. become corrupt. having unable promised never destroy the world again with a Flood. the "sons of will founding "nations. The desire to live in overlooks the is risk that the single. only language that exists should If the only state. as it were. unified world-state. 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. In Genesis nized 10. would God. noble it may be. good which so I think is the one correct one. however. and powerful cities. The or reputation earn. no possibility of the living. in if taking into account the desire of the Babel-builders. separate peoples." of that is. validated by the consensus of everyone in it. 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. In Genesis not allow of 11. It is true that they wish eternity. 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. but he was not God in naming it after his son. the world was orga according according to the to "nations. hold them together in Shinar forever. 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. be for . were tribal and monarchical.7 overthrow "name. its be to stop the corrupted universal state from retaining all members in thrall for Therefore. however thinking." a and that this may indicate worldly pride. and the only people. then. the nation sired by Abraham. then. "name" necessarily an improper desire.
1970). 1. who in Isaac Friedman's thesis. NOTES 1. trans. 1847). Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer. Medieval Political Philosophy (Ithaca: Cornell University Press. to teach. King (Edinburgh. Henry Bettenson (Harmondsworth. or for building great towers into the a heavens. 2. God. vol. One separated could use Friedman's (though he does not) to can be from the not require this argument. pp. or not trusting enough in God's promises to obey his wishes.: McMaster University. trans. in the bequest epitome of evil and order of animal flesh in Genesis 9. and human decency for any length Like Cain's city "Enoch. trans. Ont. eds.: Penguin. And in one case. 2 vols. XV. p.3. if one wished to put the city in a better light. Robert Sacks. was the Babelers were not being scattered. Nimrod is establish not the rebellion.. Concerning the City of God Against the Pagans. argue that the evils of 1979). Augustine. Cain pp. . "Piety and Four" Civilization: An Analysis of the City in Genesis results (Hamilton. which once achieved will make Israel blessing and a source of wisdom for all the nations of the earth (Gen. he is the first to explicitly a political in the new world. and not always the best. The city is not bad as some of the rabbis and Christian by its association with Cain. it is can only in coexist some kind of political order that the of time. flawed and susceptible to abuse as they are. Rev. Although the political order is less than in that it requires the exercise of force. Isaac Abravanel. law. Eng. Jacob Neusner. whose claim to leadership might be said to be indirectly authorized by God himself. that the city cities were Genesis 1-11 would seem is not evil. There are grammatical and general grounds built the city. 150 51. 4. the world which is being properly populated by the sons of Noah. p. 44-48. 158. in Ralph and Muhsin Mahdi. The traditional pious exegesis of Genesis fails to understand that merely human are achieve political orderings. Cain's son. 1972).6). The mo tives of those who built the first mixed.7. we find that cities are built by a masterly figure.) Lemer 1978). then. Gerald Friedlander (New York: Hermon Press.The martial City in Genesis 19 valor. In societies other than Israel. The arguments for this are well summarized for arguing that it was Enoch. Genesis Rabbah. Cain was afraid of afraid of what death. as city of Enoch. but for purity. 256. 1985). 4. but these motives were not wicked. 242. If these people strayed. John Calvin. trans. Deut." Nimrod's cities are the "inauguration" of something new: a social order in which justice can have a foothold. Commentaries on the First Book of Moses Called Genesis. 3. the only possible means by which the non-Israelite children of Noah can justice upon the earth. Commentary on the Pentateuch (selections). because Cain is not so commentators make out. 196-98. which do not claim the benefit of God's direct rule and teaching. But I do I do not believe that Genesis wishes us to understand Cain as funda stained mentally evil or ungodly. pp. John trans. (Atlanta: Scholars Press. in Genesis 10. arts. 12. (Title henceforth: City of 5. the order represented perfect by Nimrod is essential. it due to knowing God wanted.
I too have been influenced by the various Strauss on the Bible and wish to acknowledge it fully." Memory of Peter C. 6. NY: Edwin Mellen Press. ment of of 405-39) in the work cited. whose "Jerusalem and Strauss. As I have been deeply engaged with this material for a number of eds. MA: JSOT Press. and to Leo Strauss. Eugene Combs and Kenneth Post. in my necessary simplification the Combs-Post of the Babel story which discussion. . I have doubtless been influenced by another very rich interpretation in some respects resembles it. I have only scratched the surface of the Combs-Post account of the Babel story. except when I can clearly recall a specific indebtedness. Craigie (Sheffield. The Foundations of Political Order in Genesis and the Chandogya Upanisad (Lewiston. C. I add that. I know of no other philosophical and exegetical treat the Babel story of comparable length and depth. But I give here a very firm acknowledgment that many of my specific sug gestions must have come from them. hence.. which who essay was seminal for them. 1988). whose 1990 work was available to them Athens" in typescript form much earlier. "Has YHWH cursed the Ground? Perplexity of Interpretation in Genesis in Lyle Eslinger and Glen Taylor. and undoubtedly to the rabbinic tradition of interpretation shows writings of up in Sacks's work. S. A Commentary on the Book of Genesis (Lewiston. Robert Sacks. 1990). Lewis's novel That Hideous Strength. Ascribe to the Lord: Biblical and Other Studies in years. Sacks in turn acknowledges his immense debt to Leo introduced him to Genesis. 1987). In a general way. 1-5. Readers who wish to think about its depths more fully should read the chapter on Genesis 1 1 (pp. Eugene Combs. Due to space limitations. and that my general line of approach is completely theirs. even though Strauss is not cited in this essay because he does not deal with the specific passages I am working on here. I add that Combs and Post would probably transfer much credit for their ideas to Sacks.20 Interpretation 6. NY: Edwin Mellen Press. it is no longer possible for me to tell reliably which ideas were originally mine and which theirs. I am going to dispense for the most part with notes.
hitch him up with a rope and hold him to the furrow? Will he behind you? 11 Would you rely upon him? Remember. he every green thing is his crib? plow to search out. 1 . horse'3 her to forget wisdom.5 thrive and flourish in the wild. 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. in Volume 25 of Interpretation.9 bustling hills as of the hear the drivers 8 but roams the his pasture. 26.12 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. 15 She has forgotten that hers. and does not and even in the salt lands? 7 He laughs shout. meet armed combat. John's College. 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. in his is not strength as he goes out to 22 He laughs fear and dismayed. and she has no share in 18 She just flaps her rider. Vol. No. appeared nor is he turned The first bers 2 and thirty-eight chapters of the translation and and commentary in Volume 24.The Book Translation of and Job Commentary on Chapters 39 through 42 Robert D. Fall 1998. You see.10 9 "Would the 10 Can is you wild ox agree to serve you? Would spend the night at your up the valleys great. or that a wild beast might trample them down. Sacks St. 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. 6 whose home I have at the made the wilderness. Num 3.14 wings as if on high. as if they were not even in all vain. interpretation. and thus to end their they couch and split you watched number3 open4 travail? 4 Their her children more. Her toils caused foot can crush them. 16 She treats her were all children roughly. and who dwells city. 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. she has no fear 17 because God has understanding. 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.
2Sam. 25 but facing battle from afar. if we were in Hebrew they have totally different names. guiltless May my kingdom before the LORD for the blood of Abner the son it whirl down upon the head of Joab. and upon all his when devour them in their fortresses. Oh."18 Comments 1. although almost as side. by the flashing into the spear and the earth. "I and father's house. 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. it originally meant "to whirl. javelin. The and single Hebrew word hul. he is there. forever Ner. Indeed." Hos. His swill it from afar. unity that lies within the complexity As far as one can tell. 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. consume the of their gates. 24 With he gouges pays no homage to trumpet's 'Huzzah' ! He smells the blast. which have here translated by the phrase of our I have generally translated birth" is "writhing in the dance of "writhe. he said. 23 A quiverful of arrows whizzes excitement and agitation." . eye spots He takes up his lodging on the highest 29 From there he searches out his prey. Job has entered far into hind what we have come to call the Land of the Jackal. 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. making it his stronghold. 2. building its nest on high? 28 He dwells upon the rock. David heard of it. Whenever death defiles." a very will complex word. 1 1 :6 The bars sword shall "whirl and down" against their cities. much understanding of the Book of Job center on our attempt to regain the sense of of this word.17 pinnacle. 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. 3:28 are of Afterward.22 back Interpretation by He edge of sword. and See notes to 26. 30 and his fledglings down the blood.
saying. hands anger burned hot. neither did you give them to them. 15:20 Then Miriam. only to the book Judges. 32:19 And as soon as Moses' he came near the dancing. the sister of Aaron. 149:3 Let them timbrel and praise his name with dancing. and often when first reading the word. Deut. "Go and lie in in the vineyards. the prophetess. And to us. if the daughters of Shiloh come out win to dance the dances. then they went and returned inheritance. and go to the land of Benjamin. in her hand. the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh. Judg. it Psa. trembles and writhes The land in pain. Benjaminites did so. Exod. from the dancers to their and took their wives. Then. then come out of the vineyards and seize of each man his wife from the daughters their Shiloh. Grant them graciously to us. ends in fright and of a with such high hopes for self- the clear need of the one thing had hoped to avoid. 29:8 comes to mean "to tremble. and rebuilt the towns. her took a timbrel and all the women went out after with timbrels and dancing. 21:20 wait And they commanded the Benjaminites. 23:5 Jer. according whom they carried off. 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. and watch. we will when fathers or their brothers come to complain did not take say to them. And the to their number. king. the reader can feel a foreboding thought thickening the air. Exod. The Book rule. because we for each man of them his wife in battle. that book which begins see them dashed." or "to quake": The voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness. they will be in anguish over the Tyre. foot and camp and saw the calf and the he threw the tables out of his and broke them at the of the mountain. It "anguish" often means and "pain": Isa. else you would now be guilty.The Book of Job It can also mean 23 "to dance. and dwelt in them." Sometimes it is and exultation: used in a perfectly wonderful context which can be full of joy Psa. 51:29 When the report about report comes to Egypt. for the Lord's purposes . too. anguish who shall hear the report of tremble and be in because of you. making melody to him with lyre! But more often than not things get out of hand.
I conceive me. and the archers he was badly wounded by the archers. to make the land of Babylon a desolation. out of his sight. are on high. Note the phrase "a whirling word tempest. it the storm of the will LORD! Wrath has head gone forth. a whirling burst upon the of the wicked. tempest. Here there is no indication that the by a curse or the result of having taken a bite of the apple. birth": as in our case." English-speaking in this also recognize . thy judgments puffs at them. They look another. 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. and you forgot birth. as for his foes. Pangs like a woman will and agony will seize will be in anguish in travail." and hence "to give Deu. Isa. your vindication as Ps. angry them. But. 23:19 one more aspect of Behold. 25:23 The north wind and a backbiting tongue. the mean "pain" "anguish" same word that meant and can also "to prosper": Psa. he We a man can now begin to understand the great admonition: "Gird your loins like is put (gebher). Job. and ISam. inhabitant. For this reason." There is wildness and pain present when the signet to the clay to make a thing of value and worth. in and your right as the noonday. they aghast at looks. their faces be aflame. and sin did my mother Prov. 32:18 the You God He were unmindful of who gave you the Rock that begot you. 10:5 His ways prosper at all all times. it can also mean "to be in labor. 31:3. brought forth in iniquity. pressed upon Saul. in visiting the day of birth. brings forth rain.24 Interpretation against without Babylon stand. 51:5 Behold." 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. 37:6 will bring was forth the light. There is Jer. Ps. 13:8 and will one they will be dismayed. was revisiting the day of his own birth. or even a mortal injury: The battle hard found him.
going off about their labors of snatching up dawn. How different things Isa. of course. To word understand used this passage. 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. 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). 7. and understanding the of the one may lead us in coming to terms with the other. is land? the question to Job: Can he discern number and order in this untrodden 4. fostering in each life to own its signet. 6. has never known either burden or rein. 8. the wild ass wild ass unlike donkey and the burro. This. an order for the first time. Yet we can all world. and are what they are. lets interrelated that they cannot be of distinguished in speech. dancing. pain-ridden. the joys of our world could never come to be. it would be best to begin by seeing how the is in other Biblical contexts: . did not have the respect that these lines demand: Job 24:5 They are wild asses at in the desert. But quite even Job. the separation of birth is that our hard and as final as the separation of death. The question is. rhetorical. are 3. From the point of view of human justice there is no priori reason a a why birth our should entail so much pain.The Book of Job sage some 25 foundation for the shift we had already begun to feel in the role of the feminine. since. we can begin to see its own necessities which seems to be see that without such a totally indifferent to our sense of order. speaks to Job. and in terms of human justice it a world seems all wrong. The had been for it: wild ass mentioned several times in the text before. 66:7 her Before here from the Book in labor she gave Isaiah: pain came upon she was birth. a nurturing god rather than a constructing god. She. then. while he showed a certain amount of compassion. It is the whirling. perhaps with beyond world. The Voice here as reminds Job that in its own way. the Voice is beginning to open Job to different kind of order. before her she was delivered of a son. 5. for the Hebrew word for tempest is see that pain and birthing a tempest that Job joy and birth are so feminine noun. Here. In using such a harsh word.
but they were treated kindness: justly and . the his Surely king this the he has up to will enrich with defy Israel. "servant. too. and destroys it. go out free. gave no answer. great riches. so that no one should enslave a Jew. to and the man who and will give Israel. that show his concern. but he him for favor. 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. When a man strikes the . and you had set them into subjection to free according to their desire. and the slave is free his lord. has served you six years. And there are other passages." since the with language does not distinguish between "slave" and Job. Hebrew man. his brother. sake. my wife. "Is not and make his father's house free in choose: Isa. and like a hireling he waits for wages. and in the seventh year you shall let him ISam. ears to me. be your slaves. is sold to you. Jer. did have a slave or servant: Job 19:16 to I called to my servant. female. 58:6 fast that I loose the bonds let the of wickedness. 21:2 When you buy a Hebrew slave. for nothing. "Have come you seen this man who has him kills him. 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. 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. 34:9 and to break every every yoke?" that one should set free his Hebrew slaves. male and .26 Interpretation Exod. he shall serve six years. and But if the slave plainly says. eye of my his slave. he shall serve you six you. . years. It is true that." daughter. all are there. he a shall let the slave go free for the Deut. to undo the thongs of the yoke. I will not male or eye's female. children. 15:12 If your brother. Small and great. to oppressed go free. along many others. "I love my master. brought 9. that was true. and now must I curry They with were servants or slaves. and in the seventh he shall go out free. or a Hebrew woman. Job 7:2 Like his a slave he yearns for the shadows. 17:25 go free from men of And the come up? Israel said.
The Book of Job Job 31:13-14 If ever 27 man I felt contempt for the cause of one of my servants." This is the only verse. the osprey. Even from was within the human sphere. I do God rose up? 10." time." answer can do none of these things. 11. Job but. the stork. the vulture. but here is have in abomination what is known: Lev. the way each thing is when prior to either the arts or to tradition.. giving it a The signets. they are an abomination: the eagle. Human art is only the vaguest image of the world which farm. ance The farm. But the discovery of the notion that slavery is wrong as such. in unrecorded Bildad's "first left to itself. 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. the heron according to its kind. regardless of whether there is pain and suffering involved or not. as we shall see. and he did "hitch But to "trust them to bring in the up and hold them to the grain" would. five hundred of them. That is not to say that such ideas cannot find world back into the human is No. The trees of the Ps. requires a certain admiration for the wild ass. the hoopoe. each thing can be be what it is. 11:13 And these shall not you shall among the birds. the cedars of . the . and them yet he did have ox. they and be eaten. It is in noticeable Job 4:18-19 If He with the exception of 39:24. of course have been out of the question. has kept itself in bal legitimate claim to be much older than or nature. There were always some men suffering it caused. both for moved for others. is 12. It is through seeing the wild ass as having a life of freedom becomes important to their way its own. It is generations. oneself and men could always see that slavery unpleasant. To put it other who were deeply by the pain and wise. it may seem.. are watered bat. The an furrow. that its us. not certain what bird is meant. 104:16 LORD abundantly. what would or maid when when they brought complaint against me. "trust. it will be a long journey. and many of them devoted their lives to alleviating that suffering. whose foundation is but dust? or Job 15:15 He clean puts no trust sight. 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 requires something like the concept of a signet. Job world sees a world chaotic as which all things are trusted rather than watched. what of those who dwell in house of clay. roaming the hills as his pasture.
There is an early bas relief from Khorsabad showing a falconer bearing a hawk on his wrist. but the significance has greatly changed: Isa. pathways which lure men like Job toward the in the Great Wall Both the highest City and that reveal its problematic character. The first thing to be moving any to be asked. Does this not mean raising the very passions in Job that Elihu. they had lifted they up the ephah between wings coming like the wings heaven. lest they hold a bribe. who from hearing of bloodshed and shuts his eyes from evil. had been domesticated. character that each 17. 5:9 not the ordinance of the LORD. and eyes and saw. too. and the turtledove.28 Interpretation Lebanon stork which he planted. The imagery is not uncommon in the Bible. since the name of this bird means something like of the "piety" "loving by care. but two obscure and sometimes inter chinks weaving of the Human and the wall. Who help being totally would charmed by the and foolish antics of this silly. two women wind was in their wings. insofar as been domesticated. must 14. 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. The hawk. but my know Zech. have been were some tribesmen of the area as they have if they horses. ears his looking upon his hands. The first as words ever spoken on the field at questions savage. 15. their nests." 13. 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. 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. then. when if only in part. and in the heavens knows her times. he must learn to feel and to recognize all sides of the may find its proper place. In them the birds build trees. destruction are said of these verses is that the Hebrew text is Agincourt. 8:7 Even the swallow. the has her home in the fir stork Jer. earth and It is probable that the author intended or a double irony. and behold. silly beast. people crane keep the time of their coming. Part irony of this passage ridden is that ostriches. 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. who despises the gain of stops oppression. he will dwell on the heights. foresaw hibernation? It he warned Job not to leave his warm den of would seem that there are not one. at least it is the can most write about. 16. For Job this have been the fearful to most difficult of the beasts to meet thus far. 33:15 He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly. Then I lifted my forward! The of a stork.
" 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. 5 I have spoken once. has been defeated.The Book of Job will will 29 be the fortresses of rocks. we shall see next charming as his sister bird the chapter. Though The you make your nest as as the eagle's. the hawk. The cold and more grotesque. LORD. Look upon every man of him. is in the not Job. order 8 you shatter be right? my judgment? Would you condemn me in 9 Have you an arm like God's. who hold the height I will of hill. cause longterm planning that led up to the We do not. Bind their faces in would obscurity. 13 Bury them all in the dust."1 loins like Would might a man (gebher)2: I will question you. is high. Put on glory and 11 Let fly the outbursts of your anger. his bread will be given him. the you you who dwell in the clefts of the rock. O inhabitants in the Moab! Be nests sides of the mouth of a gorge. know whether Job or it the horrified be he did a not see. pride of your whose says the LORD. 1:3 heart has deceived you. 48:28 Jer. and you must let me know. 49:16 Leave the cities. 10 "Go ahead. his of water be sure. you inspire has deceived you. thence I bring down. 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. did for its children all that the charm to do. deck yourself out in majesty and dignity. you though your nest says the among the stars. bring clefts will down from there. and can you thunder in that you a voice such as His?3 splendor. How my hand upon my mouth. bring down to the is Though you soar aloft will like the eagle. for your own right have saved . like the dove that The horror dwell in the rock. twice. me dwelling set say in heart. to of life life about precisely because he did see that the hawk. the ostrich was unable CHAPTER FORTY 1 And the LORD wrangle with swer. The ostrich. who ground?" live in the "Who of the rock. Elihu's so implicit claim that no man is enough of a man (gebher) to face the world of nature seems to be vindicated. you who your Obad. in returning to flow off into death. but I have no answer. and Jer. 18. 12 Look down the I upon everyone of majestic pride and majestic pride and abase bring hand him low and tread guilty. The sight of the blood and the gore have numbed carnage made was so him. however. 14 Then you. high and the pride of your heart.4 even would praise you. sixth as beast.
His ducts might tail stiff as a cedar. He has it here at There would have been no need to continue. "gird up your loins like a man (gebher)". 23 Though the burst into his snare?10 river he is unalarmed. He eats fodder just like the cattle.7 Only his come can approach him with a sword. I believe. The sight of the six beasts has 1 Job has . and his teaching is not a but an 3. and you will remember war no Comments no answer. convinced him that Elihu was right. somewhat more specific than one might at first take it to be. 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. but he did not.30 * Interpretation Behemoth5 15 "But look now. hiding in the reeds and the fen. 16 but just look at the is in the muscles of his belly. He is the mighty one. or with you to be your eternal his nose. had been what God had wanted. that was always the problem: Job 9:19 If trial be by strength. here is whom I made along with you. 20 "The there to mountains yield him produce. under and all the beasts of the field play. 18 His bones iron.9 brook in him. his limbs Maker like rods of 19 He is the first of God's ways.8 21 He lies down the lotuses. Now ray he neither knows nor believes that he knows. are The and his thighs are are all knit together." His?" such as God seems to base His argument on His power. 17 He can stretch out his sinews of strength in his loins.6 of brass. He has been numbed as if stung by the Socratic sting fish. God's argument is. and if by court of law." again "asking. but Job had always recognized God's greater power. "Have you an arm like God's. or his head with fishing his head. and can you thunder in a voice let Job "telling. confident that the Jordan will mouth. Again it says. 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. beyond man is no place for a man. who would plead my case? . 22 The lotuses blanket him surround with their shade and the willows of the rage. If Job's this not point. 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. Indeed. But the Tempest will go. Once Job thought that he knew what justice was." 2. his warning was just.
"laugh" or . and his limbs like rods of The visible universe is much larger than any man knows and of which he is unaware. are all who teaches us more The verbs. iron. In the become clear that Job's understanding beyond the last two chapters." "His bones are ducts brass. of wisdom Prov. "Behemoth cattle. Job 12:7 beasts and they will show you. 8:12 . His praise endures for Prov. 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. not turn out to be the and Job has yet much to the spirit behind the administration of that justice. and I find knowledge of and discretion.The Book of Job When Job thought that he knew what 31 had justice was. dwell in prudence. Appropriately enough. he of also thought that he the means to establish that justice. of It is. 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. get beginning insight. 111:10 contains creatures which man not did not name and the unquestioned center of all that is visible. the first 8. however. The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom. Prov. 4:7 The get. These do cosmos." in the made masculine singular. whom I along eats fodder just like the neither miracu It is a normal part of the greater world around us. his wisdom. The next two chapters will the question of the administration of that justice. Job's search a world for human justice has led him into relevant. fools despise and whatever you instruction. created me at the beginning his work. Compare Ps. behemoth 5. . 1:7 The fear wisdom and of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge. of The LORD acts of old. than the beasts of the earth. with you . Man is 7. a good understanding have ever! all those who practice it. clearly are of mythic proportion. I. 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. We have which means already seen any large domesticated it in Job: Just ask the animal such as a cow or an ox. however. . however 6. 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. being lous nor mythical. . The word is the normal plural of the feminine noun behemah. is this: Get wisdom. God is joking.
and But had her laughter been goodnatured." looking at each usage. is usually translated "oppress. Shall be born to a man who is a hundred years old? Sarah. There is. Gen. a and said to himself. and you shall call his name Isaac. 18:12 came next: So Sarah laughed to herself." as It occurs rather frequently in of the Bible and with the exception of this verse only. way limit our mean of seeing that other than "derision. "O that Ishmael might live in thy God said. somewhat boring books foot the subject of of "laughter" "play. He is passively ferocious yet actively gentle and seems to rule by laughter. note on role we must now begin a rather and long and. person The first in the Bible to laugh on was Abraham: and Gen. Interpretation 'Ashaq kind. since words like or I shall by I'g essentially verse. "After I have my husband is old. no the possible exception of the Book of Proverbs. The wages of a servant shall not remain with you all night until the morning. bear child?" next verses it becomes clear that it was not a contented laughter: said to God. half-real fabric reader whom of this account succeeds in leaving the feeling he has room that he shares a never seen. 18:13 The LORD said to a she would have felt no need to deny Abraham. tyrannizing river. I will establish my covenant with him as an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him." Joy and happiness are another matter. The half-mythic. I fear. world with a living being at ease of monumental stature of the This grand beast is in the land Jackal. 19:13 Does it contempt seem good to You that You oppress. child. making it his drinking foun tain. shall I have pleasure?" grown old. He finds Thus. hand? that You have for the toil of your own You hired shall not oppress your neighbor or rob him. 'Shall I Indeed bear I old?' am Is anything too hard . 10. but Sarah your wife shall bear you a son. But from the Gen. for the pounding. verse inquiry be to the words shq and shq. "Why did Sarah laugh. always implies injustice the gravest Job 10:3 Lev. sight!" And Abraham Sarah's laughter Gen. "No. now that and say.32 9. 17:17 Then Abraham fell "Shall a child who his face laughed. "mocking" It must remembered that we are only speaking of "laughter." I believe that the role subject plays a of in the Book with Job which differs from its in the other the Bible. however. that she had laughed. saying. 17:18 is ninety years old.
"God has who made a laughingstock of me. for the LORD is about to sons-in-law to destroy Sarah: Gen. for land of Egypt." at Next there came Ishmael: But Sarah saw the son of with Gen. you laugh". 21:6 city.The Book of Job for the LORD? At the spring. Gen. for she was afraid. he with me. up to play. Foolish Isaac's innocent play Gen. and rose your And the LORD said to people." and Sarah shall have son. not 33 appointed time I will return to you. "No. every one hears will laugh me. 26:8 also was actually doing. son whom she had borne Abraham." the But he seemed to be jesting. and offered burnt offerings brought peace offerings. his marry his daughters. and I cried out with a loud voice. "The Hebrew servant. Next . playing her Isaac. but certainly the betrayed him. He said. And Sarah said. Then came the golden calf: Exod. 39:17 and she told whom you in to lie him the same story. whom you brought up out of the Moses. and the people sat down to eat and drink. in to me to insult me. 19:14 went out and said to get out of this his sons-in-law. saying. but did Then came the taunting laughter So Lot of the sons-in-law of Lot: who were to Gen. 39:14 she called to the men of her household and said to them. "Up. "I did laugh. "Go down. came have brought among us. Abimelech Isaac out of a window and saw king of the joking with Rebekah his wife." a But Sarah denied. It is hard to have any idea of what Ishmael consequences were disastrous. in the saying. 21:9 to Hagar the Egyptian. a When he had been there Philistines looked long time. he me to has brought among us a Hebrew to insult us. came "See. have corrupted themselves. place. 32:6 and And they rose up early on the morrow. The next two occurrences of the word are usually even translated by the word "insult": Gen.
and mocked them. The same might even be said for Michal: 2Sam. with songs and making merry before lyres and harps and tambourines and castanets and cymbals. And when they came to the and was threshing floor of Nacon. There is laughter no question was but that Uzzah's punishment which stemmed from the next too great. "It was before the LORD. that he may make sport for So they called Samson out of the prison. for the oxen stumbled. 2Sam. from city to city through the country of and as far as Zebulun. . Therefore that which place was called they fell Helkathhazzurim. Next came laughter and a tune that led to a revolution: ISam. and he made sport before them. "Call Samson. who chose father.34 Interpretation Judg. twelve for Benjamin and Ishbosheth the son of Saul. by them I shall be held in honor. the abased and above all people of the his house. they said. at Gibeon. and he died there beside the God." has slain his thousands. to appoint me as LORD and I will make merry than this. "Let them over and by Then they arose and passed number. 6:5 And David the LORD and all the house of Israel were with all their might. "Let the young men arise and play before And Joab said." said to Joab." twelve of the servants of his opponent by the head." pillars. 16:25 And when their hearts were merry. and God smote him there because he ark of put forth his hand to the ark. David his ten Joab and Abner play rough: 2Sam. but they laughed them to scorn. They made him stand between the us." Then come mocking and scorning couriers went 2Chron. I and will make myself yet more contemptible I will be in your eyes. 2:14 And Abner us. 18:7 And the women sang to and one another as they made merry. 30:10 So the Ephraim and Manasseh. before the LORD. And in his each caught arise. so down together. "Saul thousands. but by the maids of whom you have spoken. Israel. David. Uzzah put out his hand to the ark of God took hold of it. is and thrust his sword opponent's side. And the anger of the LORD kindled against Uzzah. 6:21 And David me above your prince over said to Michal.
10:19 Bread is for laughter. is the man who deceives his has neighbor and says. at the but the LORD laughs coming. there is no quiet. Selah. the LORD has them in derision. 10:23 beside him. Ecclesiastes also has a rather dim view of laughter. dost laugh nations in derision. so is the laughter of fools. "I am only joking!" Prov. laughs at the time to come. but wise conduct is pleasure to a man of understanding. 1:26 Prov. firebrands.The Book of Job Even the good 35 laughing He at the bad is not the same as goodnatured laughter: Ps. . 29:9 If a wise man and an argument with a fool. Eccles. 14:13 Prov. "It is mad. . Prov. for he sees that his day is Ps. wisdom. 31:10 . and shall laugh your from of the at living. of There only do find something find in the Book Job. wicked. and fear. like a master workman. 2:2 I said of laughter. Jeremiah is not quite the same. and a time dance. and death. "What use is Eccles. the fool only rages and laughs. and I find knowledge and discretion. 3:4 to a time to weep. however. closer to what we finds another strain. saying. thou dost hold Peppered throughout the one quotations from the Book we of Proverbs. also will laugh at your calamity. dwell in prudence." and of pleasure. Prov. 8:31 Prov. he will uproot you from the land The righteous shall see. and wine gladdens life. 52:5-6 But God will break you down for ever. A good wife who can find? She is far are more precious than and she jewels. he will snatch and tear you tent. It is like sport to a then I was fool to do wrong. Sorrow is better than laughter. He too rejects the "laughter" of his day: . at them. 8:12 . rejoicing before him always. and I was daily his delight. I you. Like a madman who throws and the end of joy is grief. Strength and dignity her clothing. it?" Eccles. all the him. and money answers everything. as For the crackling of thorns this also made under a pot. Prov. is vanity. rejoicing in his inhabited world and delighting in the sons of men. 2:4 Ps. Ps. 7:6 the by sadness of countenance the heart is made glad. 59:8 But thou. 37:13 who sits in the heavens laughs. I will mock when panic strikes I. O LORD. for Eccles. arrows. 26:18 Even in laughter the heart is sad. Prov. a time to mourn. and a time to laugh. 7:3 Eccles.
I sat because thy hand was upon me. "The LORD has done things for them. 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. and have compassion on his dwellings. 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. There are also such thoughts to be found elsewhere: Ps. When her . says LORD. 30:17 the For I will restore health to you. But he also has another notion of laughter. Jer. for thou hadst filled me with indignation. 15:17 not sit in the company of merrymakers. Zech. And playing in its Outside follows: Lam. I did alone. and I was deceived. for whom no one Thus says the LORD: Behold. Then our mouth was with laughter. thou art than I. city be full boys and girls in hand for very age. because they have called you an outcast: 'It is Zion." Thus in the says the LORD of hosts: Old men and old women shall again streets of Jerusalem. 1:7 of the Book of Job there are only a handful left.36 Interpretation Jer. I will make them honored. thou hast deceived me. because he so that magnified himself against the LORD. Was thieves. and your wounds Jer. and the voices of those who make merry. Moab shall wallow not in his vomit. 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. multiply them. 20:7 stronger all O LORD. shall not small. nor did I rejoice. I will restore the cares!' fortunes the of the tents of Jacob. every one mocks me. Jer. I and the palace shall stand used to be. I will heal. I have become a laughingstock the day. however. and thou hast prevailed. Out of them shall come songs of will thanksgiving. him and he too shall be held in derision. and where city it shall be rebuilt upon its mound. 48:26 "Make him drunk. they shall not It is reserved for another time and is not a way of meeting what is before us. and they be be few. the we were like those and our dream. a derision horror to all that are round about and feels mocked Jer. then they among nations.
the a side which had always been a part Job and. The first to Job 5:21-23 speak of Job is Eliphaz: be When tongues scourge. Lam. I fathers I have felt contempt to put with my sheep dogs. Job the outcast. and there was her. the burden of their day says long. a one who would 'Call answer' and now joke. if to judge by different from the others. you shall be laughed at and held in derision.The Book of Job people 37 fell into the hands gloated over the foe of the foe. and of rulers At kings they scoff. 23:32 I have become the joke to songs all all the peoples. Have no FEAR in beasts and the earth. mocking at her downfall. for it Hab. but hills as his pasture. The much subject was and bound to come up. Mat. 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. and every green thing is his to search out. even before his real thought had started: Job 29:24 I joked them them a many quotations given above. innocent joke! those younger than Job 30:1 they have would turned me into the joke. a simple. and perhaps even before with bit so that my kindness would not overwhelm because they had no self-confidence. whose it. 1:10 contains much. Job 12:4 on also grim side of But God But whose now I have become have him a joke to my friends. 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. Luke 6:21. . But there of was another side of we are laughter. 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. laughter in the Book of 8:53. none to help her. Mark 5:40. the beasts of the fields will bring His laughter is rocks and the you peace. 9:24. FEAR will of violence when you will secure and shall have no it comes. the Lord GOD: "You shall drink your sister's cup and Thus which is deep large. 25. every fortress. guilty men. 3:14 Ezek. They laugh at heap up earth and take on. for you have a covenant with the rocks the field. for they like the wind and go they make sport. but of the at violence and starvation you of laugh. and does not even hear the drivers shout. made him all his trouble. James 4:9).
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. of nature. is the importance of freedom understanding of the signets. but it and the beasts of the fields will bring you peace. Hamlet. At one first.38 Interpretation Job 39:18 its She just flaps her rider. Job has come to learn from nature. this relation is seems to Dane. wings on high. the brother. and even their sex. On this question. 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. mountains yield him produce. but he has a dream: not come to be the conquerer Job 5:22 . and over the cattle. 1 :26 and Then God said. "Let us make man in our image. With Job. See note to start Chapter Forty-one at this point. after our likeness. their iden tity. as we put have from the ostrich. but at violence and starvation you will laugh. Some English translations 12. was not the right slave?" dream: "Will he make a covenant with you to be your eternal To conquer rather it more succinctly. and laughs at a passing horse and Job 39:22 Job 40:20 He laughs The play. and over every of the . . and one of the things he learned. and over the birds air. To that extent. 3:8 and 13. at fear and is not dismayed. who well who she is even while she is being Ganymede playing Rosalind? 11." some connection of between Job's new understanding sees a bit strange. "It is I. . he has come to have its ways impressed upon him than impressing his ways upon it. nor is he turned back by edge of sword. for you have a covenant with the rocks in the field. let them have dominion over the fish of the sea. Eliphaz once had he has seen. 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. continually changing their clothing." be more a It is in comedy tragedy that people seem more plastic. subject of laughter and his Identity really discovery being what the signets. Imagine Oedipus being mistaken for a long-lost twin than of comedy. and over all the earth. Job has come. compare: seen as it follows from an Gen. Yet it is Lear shadow". 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. Have no FEAR of the beasts of the earth. but not to it.
" out up he may teach us his of Zion shall go forth shall to the mountain the law. in the image of God he created them. with harshness. He judge between the beat nations." and are quite defi nite and strong: Lev. 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. to the house God Jacob." It should be noted that both words. In many Isa. but the beyond is not ours. let of us go LORD. and they shall into plowshares. the land lay before them. 18:1 Then the whole congregation of the people of Israel assembled at subdued Shiloh." 39 So God created man in his created him. and subdued them as slaves. and over the And God blessed them. male and female he fruitful and multiply. The charm of the sentence teaches us it innocent jesting. to slaves of inherit as a them. but the he must perform now. "subdue" In addition. "subdue" "dominate. To see it is to see it as a thing for itself. the and all the nations shall flow to it. and their spears into pruning hooks. Josh. and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. the word for also has a sense of completion and final ity. 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. people of sons after you. and God said to them. not as a thing for us. 34: 1 1 and set up the tent of meeting there. But female afterward slaves they turned around and took back the male they had set free. you may make brethren the another. 25:46 You may bequeath them to your possession for ever. "Be fill the earth and subdue it. We cannot divide it up and as we will. For that ways and that we may walk in his paths.The Book of Job creeping thing that creeps upon the own image. but over your one over Israel you shall not take dominion. earth. Jer. it is only a in which he learn about play. is not a world and 14. The world about use world beyond can man in which man can play. . and have fish of the sea and over the dominion every birds of the air and over living thing that moves upon the earth. ways 15. neither shall nation shall not lift up they leam war any more. and and shall be raised above the hills. and shall their swords decide for many peoples. many of the peoples shall come. sword against nation. But it is not the same. There is no promise of a great an act day to come one day that Job must wait for in expectation. and say: of "Come.
wait. "to or so I believe. His his mouth comes a flaming from torch as sparks of a stream or like the cracking of dawn. and terror dances before him. 20 No son of the bow can stubble him to flight. 17 "When he sion. 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). eyes are 10 "Lights flash of his sneeze. could.13 cast as a nether millstone. which was discussed in carried the note to with Job 39:1. fused all together. quaver. 9 Each closed8 seal. is a near relative of the at hwl or hyl. He is king over all the sons of pride.40 Interpretation CHAPTER FORTY-ONE 1 "Thus.14 21 and clubs are rated as straw. It too. that I should wait in expectations? What is my I should prolong my life? . or exploits or the grace of his frame.2 Do up. 25 No without one of the dust shining wake till the abyss seems all hoaryhave dominion over him.'"9 Comments 1. stand. nostrils there comes smoke as boiling 13 His breath in ignites the coals and flames come out of his mouth. nor lance. the gods are in dread. shatter and are nor in confu 18 No sword that will reach can javelin. rises up. 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. Even the can see that yhl reader not in Hebrew. whereas this implies hope might also of or expectation. lie on him cast as metal and do not 16 His heart is cast hard as stone." times. and bronze as rotton wood. 15 Festoons of flesh.10 8 each touching clings" one to his brother. men not reel at the sight of is so brutal3 as to rouse him Now. up by a breath between them. 5 7 But his can unveil his garment. 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. word mean but along it a sense of dread.18 26 He sees every towering thing. nor They spear. He makes the sea his be ointment16 24 and headed. 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. for he was made to dread. him? 2 No would stand restitution?4 [all] one expectation' is an illusion. Slingstones turn to sound of the javelin. 19 He Iron he put counts as straw. and not a his shields7. 14 His strength resides his neck. 11 fire escape. They Out clutch'2 each other and cannot at be parted. 12 From his cauldron. laughs to the 22 "His the mud15 underparts are jagged leaves shards.
That is to say. on a with. waited expectation for Job 32:11 light. that we begin to see our own legitimate being as it is implied in the notion of the hwl. 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. will curse and those who are determined to lay open the Leviathan it. you play ladies? young Can with him like bird or tie him string for your yhl. he come back to life again? All the days Job 29:21 my service I have waited in expectation for my release to come. apart from their being for us. He the Lord with his sore and great and strong sword shall Leviathan the shall flying serpent. 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.The Book of Job Job 13:15 It may be that He will 41 slay will me. 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. Job 3:8 who despise the sea. Men would hear me and wait in expectation. 104:26 Leviathan whom you made They Job 40:29 serve You and You give them their a to play food in due time. till they had finished speaking. 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. that it is by giving up the yhl and recognizing that the world beyond man and its denizens have a legitimate being for themselves. my Job 29:23 Job 30:26 the They waited for me in expectation as for the rain. falling silent to hear counsel. but there came only a murk. The first has replaced the second. We have heard those Isa. YaChaL. I have no higher expectations. till they stood longer 2. and the Leviathan the crooked serpent: and Ps. head of the Leviathan and gave it to the people of island Those food. Job 14:14 of If a man (gebher) dies. need not imply the abandonment of hope QaWah. insofar as it deals with our the world beyond man. loose my his hand and cut me off! . the Ps. 27:1 On that punish the expectations: day. None the less I will defend my ways before Him. their in mouths opened wide as if to catch the I hoped for the good spring but there came evil. I rain. for something to say. interplay between hwl and denying us the second. which deals with our relation to the world of man. 74:14 the You crushed the as slay the crocodile that is in the sea. that God hopes? Would that God were pleased to crush me.
Job has nonhuman. But to see that "[all] expec tation is illusion." an is to see a world which man a world as a world can may first leam to recognize of man." From it Hebrew So for "peace. and in which he for itself." Neh. Back in Verse 21 of that same chapter. word 'akf'zar. occurs which I have translated "brutal. shlm. a rock dislodged from its torrents have worn the have You washed away the dust his face of of away and its the land. You have resigned. where out my couch Father' and call out and then is my hope? 3. They with were in disgrace. like the in the wilderness. Your hand You You hoist in the me up onto the wind and set me astride to be tossed about wreckage.42 Interpretation Job 14:18-22 A mountain place." as is not a very common and it only twice outside the Book of Job. has fallen The waters and crumbled away. But the forces pulling him back into the land of the Jackal had. The comes the root of this word. mangled never overpowered man." 4. and with the might of fact. then. means "to be whole or word complete. knew it. Job had said: Job 30:21-22 You have turned brutal persecute me. Then the within fifty-two days. passed through that veil which separates the human from the of His journey had begun some time ago. spirit is eaten Job 17:13-15 If I must take the in darkness. to mean "to pay [a word comes debt]": . You have stones trashed all mortal hope. but he and His body surrounds him pain. and spread 'Thou art my to the maggots. away. The "brutal" word seems. 4:3 Even the jackals breast and suckle their young. and he has and sent him off. 6:15 the wall was finished (shlm) on the twenty-fifth day the month Elul. So. His his sons were was honored but he unaware. to imply the attempt or desire to be or be come an actor within the realm beyond the human. in already begun. The word. But that knowledge rouse may admire. apart from the needs only lead one to say: "No one is so brutal as to him up. ostriches but the daughter of my people has become brutal. 'Mother* call out to the muck 'Sister' Pit to be my home. One of them reads: give the Lam. 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.
"Go. Satan He cannot be disturbed by others. sell the live on the lift. 21:36 Or if it is known that the ox has been accustomed to gore shall in the and the past.The Book of Job 2Kings 4:7 - 43 She and came and told the man of your God. dead beast shall be his. of." by all to his the scales. The again. is to "make whole. If. mean normally In either of means "to shield. crime goal of this kind of justice is to make those who have suffered whole To the extent that one must speak of punishment. know him from the Here it is taken outside only." importance winnowing kind. 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. unlike Job. one charged with a is punished for what harm he has caused others. he pay ox for ox. and its owner has not kept it in." insures of a of that there will be grass even note "where no man saw But its justice is the 6. meganim. Job's openness as We can in his "open But Leviathan is "to finally closed to man. and what who can turn back? He tears down can never be rebuilt." meaning "to or "to fill in" what one has "lifted This understanding is fundamental to human justice: Exod. case. from the root mgn. If He should pass by and separate or close up. and I am not sure that be of much assistance either to the reader or to myself. It might help. in the however. "Is not everything under the heavens human justice. does have kind He impenetrable be hurt skin the others. then. then punishment for cosmic crimes can only be punished in terms of the harm man has caused to himself. however. on me and casts me into the hands guilty . This is human justice as it is contained in the notion of shlm. and pay debts and you and your sons can he said. The I can remainder of this chapter is clearly how the quite dense. winnowing is the prime anal ogy of cosmic justice. He closes in on a man and Job 16:1 1 of nothing is ever reopened. 8." oil rest. it does not strictly make sense to "demand exact 5. for it closed not the doors Him Job 1 1:10 Job 12:14 my mother's belly but hid my eyes from toil. It leaves always room restitution. defend." debt." 7. Therefore he cannot learn from others and so cannot learn to know himself. cannot by No one can touch him. God sets the wicked to close in men. In that sense." mine?" Cosmic justice is larger than and for the Leviathan is. it means that the spoke Leviathan. In the embodied to Job 31:34 we door." where the word a for debt is related to a word To pay off.
ing What gave anything its being by mak it intelligible to another. But it also left him open to feeling and then seeing a world beyond his world." his completion and perfection. while noticing that the Leviathan finds his strength in Job's strength lay in his willingness to stand in the open help being not. 12. dabhaq. lie on him cast as metal do not quaver. But." sar. and the face of the deep Again. from the way. ness. For the world beyond man. 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. For us it is ugly." away from all other beings." all others. pulling in and sky cutting For Job it was the beginning 10. my heart gone after my eyes. Job 19:20 Job 31:7 My bones stick (dbq) to If my step has wandered my skin and to my flesh. or constrictive: "stick. "tight. tight itself. or a taint stuck (dbq) to my hand. Job leaves himself openness open to what is most other. are But if they bound in fetters and trapped in cords of affliction. off. as stone. 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. of murk and confusion. complete.44 Interpretation One cannot up. has. "signet. but has the Leviathan seen Job? His closedness would seem to say No. it restrains speech: Job 29:10 The voice of the nobles was hushed. flesh. also consider: Job 38:30 clutches to Water draws itself up. At best. 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. fused (dbq) all together. closed entranceway. making it unknown and unintelligible to 11. Job 41:9 Job 41:15 one clings of Festoons and (dbq) to his brother. shameful. for the Leviathan. become that which seals it hotam for Job." first came to light when we saw that he had no "skin beneath his This was the vulnerability that let in pain and anguish. Job has seen the Leviathan. and their tongue stuck (dbq) to their palate. 9. the Leviathan does Job's skin. in the world beyond man.
The Book of Job
who once said:
Do I have flesh
flesh is to be
you pursue me
like God, taking
satisfaction out of
Not to feel
to understand pain;
For Job, it is through the
notion of which
of pain that we come
to understand the
importance, by seeing
risk pain and
death for that
do I take my flesh between my teeth
my life in
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
difference. "Slingstones turn to
to the world around
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
and yet we are arrested and can see
world of man
a world unstifled
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
need. an old
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
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
and you shall make of these a sacred as
the perfumer; a
anointing oil anointing oil it shall be.
ISam. 8:13 He bakers.
any like it or whoever from his people.
take your daughters to be
perfumers and cooks and
yielding fragrance. His
first it burst
behind the double door
tale the measureless realm of chaos and confusion,
always threatened to engulf
all, has become a simple utensil,
I have translated
one other passage
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
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.
one other verse
exact meaning of this word is in the Bible. The context is:
eye of the
falcon has it
never caught sight of
sons of pride ever trampled
no witness, mountains
his hand to the flint
In Aramaic, the
in Ethiopian the
In Arabic, the shhis, "a bulky
is disagreement among translators as to whether the Leviathan is or over men. The ambiguity may not be totally unintentional,
that such a
not so clear
the Leviathan himself. It
not even clear
of any concern whatsoever to he knows that he is king, though
indeed he surely is.
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
1 Then Job
the LORD and said: 2 "I know that You
all and counsel
from You. 3 Who is this I had
knowledge? I have
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
contempt and compassion
the LORD had spoken these words unto
the LORD said to Eliphaz the
against your two as
not spoken of me the
Job. 8 Therefore,
get yourselves 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
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
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
11 Then his house
and all of
came over to
one gave a of
and each a golden ring;
LORD blessed the last days
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
the second to be
and the third
the land there
found any woman more father gave them an inheritance alongside
16 And Job lived
these events, and
an old man contented with
theirs, four his days.
Comments 1 It is terribly
translate this word. Gener
ally speaking it usually implies
evil or wicked
Job 21:27 Ps. 10:2
Oh, I know
what you are
arrogance the wicked
pursue the poor;
let them be
the schemes which
they have devised.
In the Book
Proverbs, however, it
I find knowledge
it to describe God's
executed and accomplished the you will understand this.
In the latter days
in question, yibhaser, only in the Bible:
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;
The verb, then,
would seem or
finds in Proverbs
taking the in Jeremiah, since in
word mzmh either
spoken of which one would want to prevent.
This leaves the first meaning, but that is
that that too can
it is known to be
without malice or
intent. beyond me,
2. "There is
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
puts the word
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
after the second verb rather than the
The Cambridge Bible translates: "Therefore I melt away; I repent in dust Their reasoning is somewhat complicated. The root m's had
" one assumes ashes. But to others for something that one has done. This return by an author who knows the names of Eliphaz and Bildad and Zophar is. He is of at home in He a very large world in for more than a hill beans. as . 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. normally as 'el. of course. Linguistically speaking. Also see Gen. and that the linguistic and flight from back to the mundane was a integral part of the author's inten . can establish in the world of the small.The Book of Job occurred meant -49 in Job 7:5: ooze. feel sorrow or compassion for the suffering of anything like "on" does not. the word normally and so imply does guilt or self-recrimination. 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. As far em' and together as the word 'em' they simply 'em' "I feel compassion one would is concerned. we have returned to Chapter One. by the way. far as I have been able to in English vernacular is by no means as they mean "while sitting tell. I who am but dust ashes. that dust so clear 'al is exactly the word that one would expect to mean find following for. one more reason for believing tion." meaning to them. require as Greenberg does. back to the everyday language of Dick and Jane. together seem the fact that the It roots mss do mean "to melt. in itself.epher we'phar. 58:8. 18:27 the Abraham answered. real feeling that God has when people offer Him sacrifices that have no to translate it as "recant. Job the homeless is which no man counts at home now. The root nhm means understood in the text. Job 30:19 It throws me into the mire and I become like dust and ashes. for instance." or is. He is value. that the book was conceived of as a whole." where it "to It is found in Ps. however." and is." 'al. means "to despise" "reject. ." to be behind their understanding of the verse." "My also skin has become hard and begins to ooze." but. one feels remorse. have expected but it would not be so . a common Biblical phrase in all its mortality. "upon." These passages. the inference which is automatic in Hebrew. The the root m 's fundamentally Again. "Dust meaning mankind ashes. "Let them be like the with snail which dissolves into and nms slime. I have taken upon myself to speak to Lord. if one feels sorrow guilt. and repentance. and mean or When King James trans on lates "on dust ashes." sorrow or Like the English word. "I have comtempt for as 'eth or strange to let the 'al do for both. "Behold. and would something like a "myself to be to be no basis for such an assumption." and 5. there seems "to feel deep compassion." wenihamti.
death's first born his members. another eat their remains by fire?" then let me sow. Again there has been a switch middle in the texture section with of the language. 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. yet his soul. that wonderful woman of the night. Job 1:4 be a world devoid of all meaningful human action. 10. 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 . living in a nutshell. 11. the tents of skin will bribery eaten are a consuming fire. Rahab: my father them. but . but it is has been replaced not a simple return of to a fairytale world. The world of out to seeing turned has returned. 9. and send word to their three to come and eat and drink them. will consume His be away. 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. Remember Aaron. He who has seen the Leviathan will say a prayer for as they bring their bulls and their rams to be sacrificed. that the moths eaten. "Has consumed not our enemy been destroyed. All of by the language ordinary everyday adult human speech. them over. of Another dies in the bitterness goodness. our and all who belong to deliver lives from death. Job's his hands his friends eyes could not have seen. destruction. but that seeing took place in a foreign land in act." other Biblical character to use the was phrase "brothers and with all the sense of equality that it implies. and the worms cover Job 22:20 Job 31:8 saying. and save alive and mother. 8. never having eaten of together they lie in the dust. and Joshua 2:13 . It might be worth mentioning that the only sisters. Job of the wide world is again Job the servant which of the LORD. and Job His sons used to make feasts in their homes. my brothers and sisters. . . The nation now word 'aChaL that had so often meant death. tortuous syntax of the long its obscure The that language is simple. sisters each one on a different with day. Gone is the vocabulary.50 Interpretation 1.
or even eat a crust of when bread alone. 13. strength in his Now. Shechem's father. whom Job 40:15-16 He But look now. eating joyous unity. 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. 12. Joseph at which the people of Israel brought up from of Egypt were buried Shechem. three thousand camels. Gen. in sons of an the portion of ground which Jacob bought from the Hamor the father Shechem for of a hundred Qesitoth. and Zophar the Naamatite. They him conferred and to with one another and planned to come together to console him compassion. not snuffed out the life of its owners. at the end of the book. they up claims that I have eaten its produce without payment and eye.The Book of Job Job 31:12 Job 31:16-17 It would 51 be a fire consuming down to Abaddon. His might is in the muscles of his belly. 33:19 Joshua 24:32 And from the The bones sons of Hamor. here is Behemoth eats I made along with you. He richest man ('ish) in the East 15. We remember: Job 1:18-19 While he was yet talking. fodder just like the cattle. ten thousand of cattle. 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. inheritance of the descendants 14. What was not possible before has now become actual. 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. they the from his own place Eliphaz the Temanite. five hundred she asses and was the head of a very large was the estate. when a mighty wind came in from the on wilderness and struck the four corners of the house. were another one came in and said. it became Joseph. Job 1:3 He head owned seven thousand sheep. he bought for land on which a hundred Qesitoth the of piece of he had pitched his tent. Bildad show Shuhite. after character and become an act of simple Job's return. but look at the loins. The recognition of compassion that Job gained from beyond the human sphere has had its full effect within the human sphere. It fell down .
Your your robes are all fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia. The Book rection. this name? second word. stones. "cassia. in the prophets. the iron for the things iron. 4:30 When Jehu her eyes.52 Interpretation the young people. Jezebel heard of it. or all the things that a self. sym bolic of feminine corruption: 2Kings 9:30 Jer. We remember to his friends: his his day. including the being his 16. antimony. of silver. and I alone have escaped to tell thee. and of bronze for the things for the things bronze. 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." are. Job opened mouth and spurned 17. that you deck yourself with ornaments of gold. and she painted her head. all sorts of precious stones. too. the silver of of my God. and looked out of the window. And you. In ancient times it was ground into a powder. in English. It is from the words It is a new Job. so far for the things as I was able. They are dead. besides great quantities of onyx colored for setting. They consoled and showed upon him compassion for all the evils which the LORD had brought him. From ivory palaces stringed instruments make you glad. qesi'a. and used pens of the by women as eye makeup. what do you mean that you dress in scarlet. Then. and wood and stones wood." 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. of Job does not end with a deus ex machina or miracle or resur of death In recognizing the being of itself. and marble. 18." is a fragrant bark of a tree that can be pow dered like Ps. means "antimony": for house IChron 29:2 So I have the gold the provided the of for the things of gold. came to Jezreel. Job himself becomes word yom. keren happuli1: the first two ful. that you and adorned enlarge your eyes with paint? . As such it became. 45:8 cinnamon and used in cooking. "day. O desolate one. also called pukf1. Job 3:1 Then.
2:10 The them the LORD shall be broken will to pieces. and exalt the his And so it comes to mean all these things for a human being: heart exults in the LORD. flashed from his hand. 16:13 Then Samuel took the horn his oil. The LORD to judge the horn ends of the of earth." provided for myself a king of among his ISam. said. because I ISam. and anointed him in the midst of came brothers." of but qeren much than A horn contained the oil used to anoint the said to kings of Israel: ISam. and he veiled his power. and the Spirit of the LORD mightily upon David from that 1 Kings 1:39 day forward. until in to speak with him. 33:17 ox. My mouth rejoice in thy . and his homs are the of a wild with he shall push the peoples. have Samuel. all of them. They give him greater stature and a formidable look: adversaries of will ISam. "My exalted in the LORD. qeren. he anointed." means means so and together the more means "the Horn Mascara. rays Hab. And Samuel priest took the rose up. The people of Israel saw the face of Moses. It "horn. I will send you Jesse the Bethlehemite. that the skin of skin of face shone. and they were afraid to come near him. hence. and There Zadok the anointed horn of oil from the Solomon. 3:4 His brightness there was like the light. His bull has majesty. the word itself can mean "a ray of light". and such are the thousands of Manasseh. "Long live King Solomon!" and all the people But. he and went and Moses would put the veil upon his face again. 2:1 Hannah horn also prayed and said. against he thunder in heaven. will give strength his king. 34:30 the And when Aaron and all the people of Israel saw Moses.The Book of Job Now let name "horn." 53 us look at the first word. The homs of an animal are his strength and his defense. rejected and being king to Israel? Fill your go. Moses' his face shone. But the root also means "to shine": Exod. such are the ten thousands of Ephraim. to begin at the beginning. tent. firstling them the word means the horn of a living horns animal: Deut. 16:1 The LORD seeing I have horn with oil. behold. my derides my enemies. to the ends of the earth. Then they blew the trumpet. "How long him from will you grieve over over Saul. for I sons. salvation. and went to Ramah.
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. the bull and put it upon the blood you shall horns 1 Kings 2:28 of the altar with your finger. 15:28 So all up every Israel brought up the of man straight before him. He has raised up a hom for his the people of people. Praise the LORD! As I once before had occasion to mention. because it eas and ily blends "the hom into the language along of with such other phrases as "hom oil" of my salvation": 2Sam. cymbals.54 Interpretation Ps. 22:3 of My God. stronghold and my refuge. to the sound the hom. for Israel who are near to him. praise all his saints. thou . 148:14 lamp for my anointed. Joab and the rest of the pour out at the base of the altar. as soon as hear the sound of the trumpet. I have for prepared a Ps. too. the hom played a central role in the place of worship: Exod. in whom I take refuge. 132:17 will bring these meanings together: There I will make a horn to sprout for David. my savior. 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. the phrase "hom mascara" of works well. I have driven my horns into dust. of course. and you shall take part of the of overlay it with bronze. 89:17 I say your to the horn. 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. "Do glory boast. LORD with ark of the covenant of the and shouting. then city all the people shall shout with a great shout. 29:12 And you shall make horns for it blood on its four corners. trumpets. its horns shall of one piece with and shall it. my me from violence. and the wall of the people shall go will fall down flat. and made loud music on harps and lyres. And. Often the Psalmist Ps." boastful. "Do not lift For thou exalted. art the of their strength. 75:4 up Ps. and the IChron. 27:2 be Exod. Linguistically." not and to the wicked. my shield and the horn savest my salvation. my rock.
the and the name of the younger was name of the older was eyes were Leah. you are a a dead man. there is also good. Gen. then they kill but they let you live." But it is not clear what the reader is to think. he opened her womb. And when the princes of woman was Pharaoh into her. barren. because of the woman whom you have taken. they praised her to Pharaoh. the author has silently but mention force to fully robbed the word of its sting. by conjoining the Its bare word queren ("hom") to the pukh in such a natural and ordinary way. will they will say. for she is Now Abimelech had not approached her. in have to be Song its of Songs. As is the case in the dialogues of Plato. it is a subject in itself which would understood on own terms. Although it is wilt thou slay an innocent people? clear that as a young man. 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. but Rachel was beautiful and lovely. 20:2 And Abraham Abimelech said of king a of Sarah his wife. and his house because of Sarai. saw Gen. has a child: Leah knows only Gen. Jacob loved Rachel. We have not. And the But the LORD afflicted taken Pharaoh's house. 29:31 gratitude each time she When the LORD but Rachel was saw that Leah was hated. is no longer sufficient conjure up a degrading image of womankind. with great plagues Pharaoh wife. 'This is his wife'. and said to him. man's wife. also complicated The Biblical The view of beauty since is and. Jacob preferred Rachel's beauty to Leah's soft eyes: Gen. so as to not mislead ourselves. he said to Sarai his behold. And Leah conceived and bore a son. 29:16 Now Laban had two daughters. But God sister. and when . 12:11 was about to enter you are a woman beautiful to Egypt. so he said. and she . Abram's And ultimately. though perhaps somewhat naive man. wife.The Book of Job To word 55 put the argument simply. "She is my Gerar sent and took Sarah. "I will serve you seven years daughter Rachel. 19. "Behold. for your younger and he said. her beauty almost led to the death of an innocent. Leah's soft. we shall have to consider the full list." "Lord." And to came Abimelech in dream by night. "I the will see you. to Sarai. cluded however. From the The subject first arises with respect beginning we are shown the difficulties involved: When he know that Egyptians me. Rachel.
but at a very heavy price: Gen. for the way of women is upon So he searched. therefore she called his name Dan. and entered Rachel's. Laban felt . so she called his name Naphtali. "Because the LORD has heard that I his name am hated. surely now my husband will love conceived again and bore a son. So Rachel died. and two maidservants.56 Interpretation called upon his name Reuben.' and she had hard labor. for she said. saw that she bore Jacob me no children. and sat upon all about the tent. And he went out of Leah's tent. she envied or her and she said to Jacob." them. When she finally does have another: a son of her own. "Give children. but his father buried Benjamin. and have prevailed". (that and she was on the way to Ephrath is." She my affliction. So Laban point out what went into Jacob's tent. "With mighty wrestlings I have wrestled with my sister. for another And her soul was departing his (for name died). 30:1 Gen. "May the LORD add to son!" Her demand was met. saying. and said. Now Rachel had taken the household gods and put them in the camel's saddle. and she called Simon. "Because the LORD has looked me." "Any one with whom you find your gods shall not live. But Rachel always thinks in terms of battle and victory: Gen. And midwife said to as her. "Let not my lord be angry that I cannot rise before you. but with a demand for Gen. said to me. but did not find them. he has given me this son also". but he did into Leah's tent. the have son. Bethlehem). Rachel travailed. she called his name Benoni. and into the tent of the not find them. but did not find the household gods. and take know that Rachel had stolen them. 31:32 it. In the presence of our kinsmen not Now Jacob did I have that is yours. And she her father. 30:6 When Rachel sister. and I die!" shall Then Rachel said. "God has judged me. "Fear called not. 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. Then Rachel said. 30:24 and she called me another his name Joseph. in her hard labor. she reacts not with gratitude. voice and given me a has also heard my son". 35:16 Then they journeyed from Bethel.
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. and not to allow oneself to fall under the sway of that one cannot is to miss a great deal of the Bible. he disdained appearance. for when this is ISam. "Arise. 39:6 So he left no concern he had in Joseph's charge. for blood be made pollutes the land. the . . Abigail: ISam. him. anoint and was ruddy." ISam. except can for him the land. 16:12 And he sent. David. Now Joseph handsome (beautiful) and good-looking. totally forget his There relation was also to Bath Shibah. which and having him he had was for anything but the food he ate. for he He charm was but ruddy beautiful in was charming. . Deut. And the LORD said. for it. And after a time his wife cast her eyes upon Joseph. The man was churlish and understanding and beautiful. he was a Calebite. and desire for her and would take her for yourself as wife. 35:33 You shall not thus pollute the land in and no expiation shed which you live. "Lie with master's me. 41:2 and fat. . behold. Joseph. a youth. and saw and him. but all that again it led to grave problems. but the ill-behaved. 25:3 Now the name of the man was woman was of good Nabal." Then come the pointless cows: Gen. 21:11 you have but it must be read in the light of Cozbi. beautiful eyes. and had and was handsome. 17:42 And the Philistine looked. the [beautification] in it. blood that is by the blood of who shed There is a law: and see among the captives a beautiful woman. whom we saw at work in the note to Job 6:11. Nonetheless. Gen.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. and said. David was beautiful: brought him in. was Joseph himself beautiful. and the name of his wife Abigail. Now he he. and up the there came up out of fed in the reed grass. they first seven fat cows.
Absalom and struck him. and pretended to be ill. while the mule that was under him went on. "Pray let my sister Tamar come and Now was make a couple of cakes But and said when she in my sight. my than she. "I king). I saw Absalom hand. and lay Her brother was not so wonderful. Amnon lay down. the and she became the king's not. her. lie with her. Amnon said to the king. 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. two chanced to and upon hundred the shekels by the king's And Absalom was servants of David. while he was still in the surrounded And ten young men. he took hold sister. every And when he the his head (for at the end of cut year he the used to cut of it. . and when the king came to see him. For the understand sake of completeness I shall add the rest of the story. and brought her to the maiden was king. Joab's armor-bearers. and killed him. and found Abishag the Shunammite. but her beauty caused her disaster: 2Sam. and told hanging in an oak. and after a time Amnon. "Come. and she was a beautiful woman. But he would not he forced her. 13:1 Absalom. born to Absalom three sons. though I do not its importance: 2Sam. 14:27 There were name was Tamar. when was heavy meet on him. 2Sam.58 Interpretation Tamar was a wonderful person. whose name So Tamar. and being stronger to me. loved her. alive and thrust them into the heart Absalom. and left hanging between heaven earth. David's son. oak. from the sole of . his foot to the . if I had dealt the will aloof. he it). he weighed weight. had a beautiful sister." hand." of her. that I may eat from her brought them near him to eat. hair his head. On the other Joab. then you yourself would have stood not waste time like this you. The very beautiful. and the mule went under the thick caught branches was of a great oak. crown of cut there was no blemish in him. "Behold." with And he took three darts in his of hand. one daughter whose Next came poor Abishag: 1 Kings 1:3 of So they sought for a beautiful maiden throughout all the territory Israel. Absalom he riding his mule. but beauty did him in as well: 2Sam. his head and fast in the oak. 18:10 And a certain man saw it. with listen to her." treacherously against his life (and there is nothing hidden from Joab said. but king knew her . nurse and ministered to him. David's son.
for the customs of the peoples are false. Ps. yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. A tree from the forest is cut down. Your eyes will see the king in his beauty. Mount Zion. the maiden was beautiful lovely. instead of beauty. shame. when she has done vile . Mordecai adopted her his own daughter. that is Esther. her eyelashes. 48:2 the beautiful in elevation. in let her Prov. that you what do you mean that you dress in Your beautify yourself with ornaments of gold. but a woman who fears the praised. Men beautify so that gold. 31:30 Charm is deceitful. 3:24 Instead girdle. therefore God has blessed for ever. as and when her father and her mother died. 33:17 Jer. Esther's beauty saved her people.The Book of Job Vashti's 59 beauty did not help her. and instead Isa. a girding of sackcloth. 10:3 lovers despise you. And you. 3:11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. Do not desire her beauty in your heart. the daughter of his for she had neither father nor mother. 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. of perfume Isa. 4:30 hair. 6:25 far north. also he has put eternity into man's mind. is the joy of all the earth. baldness. O desolate one. it it and worked with an axe with silver and by the hands of a craftsman. they will behold a land rope. Jer. and instead of a rich robe. in she was order to show the peoples and the princes her beauty. they seek your life. for of a this is his lot. and and do not capture you with Prov. LORD is to be beauty is vain. Eccles. the city of the great King. scarlet. 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. Esther 2:7 uncle. for themselves: is Ps. grace you poured upon your lips. for fair to behold. Jer. 5:18 Behold. 11:15 What right has my beloved in my house. a there will be rottenness. and instead of well-set that stretches afar. that you enlarge your eyes with paint? In vain you beautify yourself. 45:2 You are the most beautiful of the sons of men. and He had brought up Hadassah. 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. they fasten it with hammer and nails cannot move. Eccles.
33:32 And. cast you to the ground. The cedars in the garden of God trees could not rival were as it. Your heart was proud because of your beauty. of your your renown exceedingly beautiful. 31:7 exposed you before kings. you. for they hear young and men shall say. Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: Because it and set its top among the clouds. says the Lord GOD. full of wisdom and perfect in beauty till . 2:15 with goodly fruit". 9:15 that thirst. and grew embroidered fine flour came and honey and oil. and multiplying your Your borders are in the heart of the seas. the joy of all of with gold and this the city which earth?" the beautiful and silver. Thus says the Lord GOD: "You were the signet of perfection. raise a lamentation over the king of Tyre. that were in the garden of God. "Is beauty. to perfect your The men of men of Arvad Gamad and Helech were upon your walls round about. they shall devour and . 16:13 Thus at the daughter was called the perfection of you were made Jerusalem. and your cloth." Ezek. Son of man. made they hung Ezek. I you corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor. I made it beautiful in the mass and all the trees of its branches. day the beautiful of virgins and the The LORD hosts will protect them. 28:15 You their shields upon your walls round about. renown. in the length of its branches. you then exult? The LORD once called you. "But trusted in beauty. "A green olive beautiful will set Lam. to feast their eyes on It was its roots went beautiful in its greatness. All who pass along the way clap their hands at you. lo.60 Interpretation deeds? Can vows and sacrificial flesh avert your doom? Can tree. and played the harlot because of your . . . for it upon was perfect through the splendor which I had bestowed your you. and say to him. and went forth among the nations you because beauty. 27:4 any passer-by. and its branches will be consumed. for down to abundant waters. and lavished your harlotries your on any passer-by at the head of every street you yourself built lofty place and prostituted your beauty. iniquity was found in you." I Ezek. towered proud of Ezek. beautiful you you are to them like one who sings love songs with a what voice and plays well on an instrument. they perfect your beauty. And silk. the plane garden of of nothing compared with its branches. I have cast it out. your builders beauty. but they will not do it. . he shall surely deal with it as its wickedness deserves. and were in your towers. you ate raiment was of fine linen. and its heart was its height. they hiss and wag their heads Ezek. faint for Amos 8:13 Zech. nor the fir trees equal its boughs. high Eden envied it. I will give it into the hand of a mighty one of the nations. You to regal estate. but with the roar of a great tempest he fire to it. no tree in the God was like it in beauty. were blameless in your ways from the day you were created. offering made harlotry.
how good and how fair it men they shall shine on his land. and new wine the maidens. tance only would not The first thing to note is that the daughters of Zelophehad received an inheri because their father had no son. 20. 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. Hoglah. and before Eleazar the priest. you shall give them . Noah. Num. young be! Grain shall make the flourish. Milcah. Machir. saying. and he had no sons. drenched like the God will save them crown shall the altar. 27:5 Moses brought their before the LORD. The names of his daughters Mahlah. Milcah. And they stood before Moses. whereas in the Book of Job the inheritance is purely for the the daugh ters. Noah. 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. 27:4b Give to us a possession alongside our father's brothers. but died for his sin. Our father died in the wilderness. he those who gathered of among the company of themselves together against the LORD in the was not own company Korah. a and they shall drink their blood like wine. of Gilead. and Tirzah. and before the leaders and all the congregation. 27:4a Why family. son of Manasseh. The text continues: Num. the next phrase Num. for like the jewels of a Yea. Zelophehad Mahlah. corners of be full like bowl.The Book of Job tread and 61 down the slingers. It should also be noted that it was Job's own decision to change his will. the daughters have received an inheritance. "The daughters Zelophelad right. at the door of the tent of meeting. On that of day the LORD their for they are the flock his people. And are the LORD said to Moses. but only a dowry. 26:33 Now Zelophehad the and the names of the son of oc Hepher had of no sons. 27:1 Then drew son of and near the son of son of daughters of Zelophehad the Hepher. given what he had seen in the Tempest: case of Num. Thus. 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. were but daughters: daughters Tirzah. son of Hoglah. Had there been a son.
tribal the women inheritance is paramount. houses houses of and spoke before Moses and before the leaders. were married to sons of their father's are brothers. The heads of the fathers' there was a further complication: Num. they shall marry the family of the tribe of their father. 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. 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. Although the genuine concern words "Let them marry welfare of whom they think best" clearly own show for the the women. And if he has daughter. tribe. This is what the LORD commands concerning the daughters of of Zelophehad. then will inheritance be added to the inheritance of the tribe to which the they belong. The only. daughters of Zelophehad. 'If dies.62 Interpretation possession of an the inheritance of their inheritance among their father's brothers and cause father to pass to them. 36:1 houses of of the families of the of the sons of fathers' Gilead the the sons Machir. tribe to another. then you shall cause no his inheritance to you shall give pass to his daughter. it inheritance. And their when will be taken away from the lot of our the jubilee of the people of Israel comes. came near son of Manasseh. 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. In the case of Zelophehad. so and added to the inheritance of the tribe to they belong. And you shall say to the a man people of Israel. and of LORD to give the inheritance my lord was commanded by the Zelophehad our brother to his of the people of daughters. son of Joseph. however. "The LORD commanded my lord to the land for inheritance by lot to the people of Israel. Hoglah. inheritance turns be little more than a grand . Milcah. So no of inheritance the tribes shall be transferred from Israel of one tribe to another. then his inheritance to his brothers. 'Let within them marry whom they think best. for each of the people of shall cleave to its own inheritance. 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. the heads fathers' of the of the people of give Israel. and Noah. and has no son. And every daughter who of the people of Israel shall be her father. "The tribe of the sons Joseph is right. Tirzah." of our And Moses commanded the people of according to the word of the LORD. for Mahlah.' " The daughters Zelophehad did as the LORD commanded the Moses. the tribe and their inheritance will be taken from inheritance Israel of fathers. and the Husbands are immediately out to found for from their dowry. they said.
by the fathers and some by the mothers. there would no way to live as "one of com. . beauty. the way to bake bread. So far In the case of means 63 or about husbands as I can see. ways must be taught they must be learned." Without these would must be no life. men are empty and life is without taste. there and us. and a need of clarity. be and of the ways. there would be no bread. This led to a shift in Job's standing of and sensitivity to beauty. however. 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. in turn. 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. the notion that things had their own selves apart seal upon them and were what recognition they were in them under from human need." Out of the whirl of the Tempest came the notion of the signets. Without whole. the and all way to These some bury the dead. nothing is said dowries. A small change in a last will and testament was the result. the two refused to mesh. Human sociality way to plant men work together and it requires means nothing more than that by day in the evening they talk. of his daughters. to the emergence of the nurturing and swaddling God as distin guished from the making and constructing God. led. 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. Of what do they speak? Of the com. and it is the children who must learn them. This insight." clashing for human One said while friendship.The Book of Job Job's daughters. that that Job has established the right of women to own and hold a property. The inheritance is outright and absolute. "just" by the For Job. the way to go out on the hunt. and hence to ultimately questions concerning those accounts of "the first The need things. as we have seen. the other cried beginning The was a need "unjust. for clarity that came about when his world began to fall asunder led Job to the need for autonomous understanding. They be taught.
Socratic Eros in
Plato's Charmides is
an evocative and
consideration and a
Three formal factors
corresponding points of entry into the work. First, the Charmides is aporetic, definitional dialogue, a dramatized discussion in which Socrates
term, in this
but fail to formulate
the question "What is
the end of the text, Plato encourages us to review the proposed
definitions (as Socrates
to scrutinize the processes of argu
investigation has derailed in
dialogue, featuring Socrates
as a participant
in the discus
on the next
also as a reporter of
the proceedings to
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
of the concept of a approach
the dialogue the
the second and third routes,
dramatic frame, in
consider a theme not
with reference to
Socrates tell the
prefaces the elenctic core of the
his introduction to Charmides, Socrates
conspicuous elements of and at
an erotic encounter.
says that when
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
able return to
in Athens. He
subject, he turned the
toward the latest
happenings in the
whether there were
1998, Vol. 26, No. 1
proven themselves exceptional
their wisdom or
(153a-d). It is
noting that Socrates (peri on in
ta nun) and about the physical attractiveness of the youths.
setting the Charmides in a be stimulated both physically and intel
one another's presence.
are reminded 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
link between eros, the desire for beauty,
phy, the desire for wisdom, though the nature of that link is not
asked about the
began to fill the room,
Socrates, than a Critias told him, were the
that this cousin
Charmides (154a). We learn
young immediate discomfiture
common consent the soon
age group. of all
entered, to the
to his anonymous
am no good at measuring.
ruler when me.
beautiful young men. Nearly all men at that Charmides seemed just then remarkably tall
effect on all the men
present, from the
to the oldest, all of whom gazed upon
him "as if he
use of words and
images here is
What I have
translated as "I am
simply a blank Atechnos leuke stathme
make no extended make
meaning from the fact that a line coated with visible measuring marks on limestone or marble,
white chalk could not
at a man who seems to
perhaps of stone.
then says that
who was also
present, remarked upon
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
ual with a
that they were looking at an individ distinctive identity. The very magnitude of this distinguishing feature to his other admirers, but the
Eros in Plato 's Charmides
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
possessed, besides his specifically, "a
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
any impression of unseemliness, Charmides over. By making this
politesse older man
suspected of sexual motives often
approaching a youth could easily be partly for this reason that fathers would in such settings, to shield the boys from
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.
up the issue Socrates
that this meeting does at
least have the
appearance of a seductive approach. enough
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
In any event, it worked,
his narrative, telling his among the
proach caused a great ruckus man
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
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
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
that I saw what was
myself, and I came to regard Cydias as the
wisest counselor with respect
beautiful boy, he fawn before
gave the a
advice to someone:
care not to go as a
a piece of
97). but before elaborating its so far from the time Socrates Charmides. Diotima's lecture to Socrates in the Symposium is." p. particularly restraint indulgence. was a enough to see that Socrates' typical understanding of the word's meaning. 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. 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. from sex been Since self-control. in these small dramatic hints such a explicit: quences way that it poses What is sophrosyne? (159a). with some effort to answer that I did. The second leads us back into Socratic eros. at Symp. it is easy ability to overcome his immediate lust for Char mides introduces one possible definition of the term dramatically. not mutu Pit. 714). and it can of that drives a consideration of course. One question is help the the elenchus of the of fact that Socrates apparently possesses the virtue? The first Charmides. audience familiar courage with it certainly springs to the mind of a later the Symposium. has ual not yet the topic of the discussion that takes up most of the mentioned. Charmides. 221d). Diotima explains that while those who want to gain a kind of physical immor eros ing theme in the Charmides. But Socrates is a rare creature (Alcibiades not alto remarks on gether his atopia. but more particularly we have notion geous coexisting and here a suggestion an augmented coura of Socratic sophrosyne. these virtues were often considered a rare combination. and perhaps it is surprising that we should find courage and sophrosyne complementing one another in his character. our Socrates' for Plato's treatment importance I wish of Socratic eros to review what we have learned with in this dialogue. an elenctic investigation begun. 507a-c. After tality seek marriage and family. Still.5 Furthermore. in which Alcibiades praises Socrates sophrosyne both for and for (219d-220c). if ally exclusive (North 1966. those who are more inclined to leave an intel- . "oddness. We might see from Plato of the unity of virtue. 306b). (155d-e) The Charmides is which is all we only source for this Cydias fragment (Page 1962. in in the which self-control and exhibits itself in can actions. In the Laches Socrates context of Laches agree that one speak easily Though of courage resisting temptation and of the indulgence (191d). Although Plato makes a connection between courage and sophrosyne in other dialogues (Grg. entered the palaistra to his actual meeting Sophrosyne.68 I Interpretation thought that I myself cure had been captured by a beast like that. important texts on the theme of eros. one of Plato's most enhance our understand she has explained to Socrates that is ultimately a longing for immortality through procreation (201c-208e). I managed when he asked me if I knew the for his headache. citation of Cydias is significant have from the poet.
Indeed. someone who is both kotos and. just as a fawn . despite body. 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). eternal rates beauty (Symp. Narrative. certainly will he would never anything ugly. know that Critias' assurance that his cousin's soul was beautiful. pregnant If this is the case. face. Socrates beyond his infatuation with the young man's individual beauty and begun his when ascent toward universal. is. hoping to find young men who could were both kalos and wise. was considered the external we might manifestation of that virtue's with sophrosyne.Drama. Therefore he attracted to beget offspring with beautiful bodies for his procreative intentions. like He this be very much drawn to this combination. he the company goodness of a person and will if he should also come upon a beautiful. and what (209a-c) sorts of Returning the to the Charmides. he about what sort of a man a good man will activities will pursue. 210a-212a). For the second. try to teach the other. at least potentially. Socrates felt that he needed to speak with Charmides face to rosyne. rather than ugly ones." he says. distinguished. but generally speaking he Socrates' beauty of all men (154b-c). who be taught impregnated with soph It became quickly obvious that Charmides met the first qualification. Soc men met more or (as the blank ruler) confesses to his friend that he finds all young less equal in beauty. Like children. 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. inward say. the spiritual a man looks for find a suitable wife to bear his goes out to a good match. the lover will prefer a combination of these qualities. and good. Surely he too [like the hoping to child] to find some specimen of beauty with whom to reproduce. palaistra he had sophrosyne in his soul. like his describes. lectual or spiritual and Eros in Plato 's Charmides 69 legacy hope lover to produce who wisdom (phronesis) and excellence (arete) (208e-209a). he implies that either at the moment he shortly "Charmides or Charmides universal. and and since the greatest kinds "by justice (dikaiosyne) sophrosyne. In he will be well-supplied with words about (arete). Since love loves of wisdom both far" beauty are and wisdom (204b). least if self-control might presence. who had warned the lover that would one could be overtaken and consumed by a beautiful boy. 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. 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. at we observe that Plato has indicated to us through met setting and action that when Socrates his friends in the be He was. he tual lover when he went out merely acting like Diotima's spiri to the palaistra. and gifted soul.
p. the perception of their own lack knowledge. In both cases. 241e).) his first speech Concluding motives of in the Phaedrus. consists in part in his intellectual Socrates' ability to unpleasant) event into an sophrosyne. passion and causes consider the significance of Cydias' The second striking point about the passage not is that turn a disconcerting.6 Third. fond of lambs.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. or as a hunter tracking game. 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. just so do lovers love 165). of citation of the line from Cydias. him to finally renewed reflection. 1978. Socrates begins to launch into epic (as wolves are he admits he has done. Halperin 1985. 58. "As which he denounces the selfish lovers boys" under the spell of eros. Jowett's translation to make it approximate a more conven tional arrangement: . right out from under hind. has not always been recognized as such. by having Socrates for a metaphor erotic pursuit that would have been familiar to his readers. in singing. For of example. The bewilderment greater engendered by the Socratic elenchus ideally spurs the of interlocutors to and self-awareness. First. but did not drink its blood. (Cited as an image for erotic capture by Dover 1978. I caught a fawn in my claws. Sim sus ilarly. Socrates' (241d). of which three come immediately to mind. Socrates' sexual arousal here leads him to a new awareness of his ceptibility to advice. Such metaphors are similar to the common compari game son of sexual pursuit to p. The usual formulation of prey lighting upon the erastes the part the metaphor comparing an erotic pursuit to a beast its quarry. Socrates. there c-d: seems to be a probable sexual connotation to Theognis 1278 A a lion. stretches the Charmides text enough For example. with trust in my strength. with who had been observing the behavior of amusement. This physiological loss in which the dialogue concludes. inversion the expected im age. This is a remarkable passage for several reasons. 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. the aporia has a beneficial element. an pp. does indeed give of the hunter and the eromenos the part of the hunted.70 be Interpretation reduced to a chunk of meat by a lion. potentially embarrassing (if opportunity for detached introspection indicates that shown in his control of his desire. hunting (Dover.
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." realization of his desire to be Socrates. or .8 and Eros in Plato's Charmides love. perceiving his craving for Charmides. we will be inclined to expect the metaphor of the lion and fawn to felt refer to Socrates and Charmides. Socrates to replies in kind then. p. "I myself to have been captured by a beast like that. 90. we can see that dialogue. and slyly Charmides have failed in his suggests that the pursued will become the When Socrates. is aware that he poses some danger to the younger man (Nussbaum 1986." you resist me Socrates answers.Drama. and to imagine Socrates as the erastes and Charmides as the eromenos. a lover might approach his beloved. their attempt to tells Socrates that the two of them should cousin even define sophrosyne. "don't (176a-d). not for an individual whose beauty incites it. a phenomenon passive eromenos of a sexual in the nominally advances relationship not only enjoys his lover's but even reciprocates. Critias. 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. lion. when. Another reading. so that the lion in the poem stands for carnal desire. 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. he devoured appetite. 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. who. only if a with the power to momentarily. respectively. also interprets the quotation in this sense). "So Charmides." he most likely means Charmides became. Narrative. "I with won't resist we continue to follow the erotic subtext of the dialogue we to "see him can view again. p. 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]. 92. Charmides thereafter spend every day together in will resort discussion. If Charmides' either. I thought how fair youth. which as a manifestation of anteros. to speak. When Socrates says. catch. Critias and and plotting that if Charmides is really intent says you" force to make Socrates submit playfully say that they to their will." no one will be able to resist him. he must mean us to go along with the game. pursue. perhaps to the point that the two roles are exchanged. and devour (McAvoy 1996." for I felt that I had been by a sort of wild-beast lion. also reads the text in this way). If we do. Thus there to me to be use of at least two more likely readings. and I think the one that most simply accommodates the text. pursuer. in which Charmides. this inverted image is to suppose that One way of understanding he means he has been snared by his lust for Charmides. interprets the inversion his encounter as a simple rever sal of roles.
even if he has little to show on the that will be enough: the lover surface.). but also in Euthydemus and our very Charmides (222a-b). came that Charmides would be willing to have Socrates' discussion of and was. Soc speak. 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). 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). Socrates' Halperin 1986. 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. The Alcibiades anteros not own corresponding only in Alcibiades himself. step. his story about his meeting he had regained with Charmides and the others. It was Socrates' version of the charm would Charmides' naturally prove to be an elenchus. and actually help nurture the Symp. 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). or the entire body charm and the soul as well. 210a. which cf. 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. This cure he Thracian doctor working under the patronage of the god a Zalmoxis. If is . in the hopes that soul would prove amenable to such a charm that Socrates had agreed to speak with him. relationship eros of their souls (255a-256e. met become should In the Phaedrus Socrates says that in He an ideal relationship eros be by anteros as a matter of course. 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. 155e). which itself he beautiful words (logoi kaloi). His focus shifted (not without difficulty) to up. bringing the soul to a healthy state consequently expediting bodily health (156d-157c). someone suitable body.72 Interpretation merged. but he does not condemn the desires of either party. was composed of A Zalmoxian physician would charm. Critias had quickened a his expectation by assuring Socrates moreover. philosophos (154e-155a). 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. Then [the in a lover] must consider that beauty in souls is worth more than the beauty in his soul. as Diotima defines it: to sophrosyne. 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. a neat and quotation of Cydias encapsulates this reversal of in Continuing told surprising image. 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. In setting himself up practitioner of Zalmoxian medicine Socrates promised to impart sophrosyne to Charmides by means of kaloi logoi.
seeking to evaluate the others on the basis of their goodness and societal benefits. From that on on. and. Indeed the Re principle followed by public is a much more extended discussion of nomoi than one's own is the Charmides. Narrative. (On the similarity in meaning Plato's dialogues. Charmides. and it may well be that Soc sophrosyne in the Charmides implies his concomi so tant possession of dikaiosyne. Soc rates argues for the identity of to kalon e. and Critias begin discussion by considering likely manifestations of that virtue quiet circumspection in practice. see Larson 1951). 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. he did so with the definition of the virtue as accep of of "knowledge of the other knowledge and of knowledge itself (166c). showing modesty generally. and benefits for individual a polis of a knowledge of knowledge . level again. "doing one's (to ta heautou prattein). the discussion possible Charmides an fixed for the meaning. e. Phil. that he has both of the virtues required of sophrosyne and by a Diotiman lover. (17 le) Socrates. 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. 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). 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. (161b-163d). penulti rung (episteme). They consider kalon only in the first of these activities.Drama. possibility. expands his logos nomoi. keeping good things to one's own work (159b-160d). In other dialogues. is accepted by Socrates and his interlocutors in the Republic as a definition for justice (433a). as would a so governed. their investigation still fo 64e) cuses on the quality of admirability in various practices. Now the third concep tion of sophrosyne. diakaiosyne in Socrates mate also prompted on Critias to elevate the discussion to the next. Rep. 165b) kind remains and his agreement with Socrates that point must therefore of the be some of episteme (165c). 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). like walking and talking with deliberate. and goodness (to agathon. own" every member of a city. however. In the Charmides of sophrosyne Socrates. (160d-161b). the element of to doing (163e-164d). and so with everything else controlled by sophrosyne.g. 457b). 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. expanded as a and usefulness (to ophelimon.g.
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. pp. he as a solution to the question of sophrosyne. discussion before the topic of episteme came up. can reinforce the understanding of that topic we achieve through the other dialogues. Kahn 1996. and Republic. For and other Kahn has early dialogues or dialogues in Kahn's terms) partly in order to prepare his readers for the fuller. 541-49). In the Charm can Zalmoxis' ides these logoi Charmides tes' was not an out of the only be the elenchus. 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.74 Interpretation and the various epistemai. 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. as well as the philosophoi logoi that Socratic lover's discourse in the Phaedrus (257b).10 By show reading the drama how one and narration of the Charmides "about" with frequent refer ence to other dialogues. 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. 148291. 56-70. to topic. 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). 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. as it turned out. he shows that the notion of the knowl- . any case. Phaedo. ostensibly. The discourse by the contemplation of pose the charm of knowledge here reminds us of the kaloi logoi that com comprise the therapy. 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. the arguments of aporetic dia logues like the Charmides. He dropped Socra ascent could go no further with him. Sadly for Socrates. Lysis. According to Kahn's theory of prolepsis. here eros. my intention has been a certain to dialogue that is not. ideal youth with whom to give birth to such discourse. 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. vision. would not had. If he had I such a necessarily have allowed that Socrates had in Plato did not choose to introduce the theory and. pp. Rather. while in the Symposium acted in the guise of an he imagines how the actions of a philosopher- lover might be expressed in theory. In the might Charmides he imagines how Socrates erastes. especially the Symposium. 1988. Laches. As an example.
Donald Watt's translation (1987. possible sexual meaning that the topic of a discussion makes no difference to endlessly on any theme (Mor. edge of good and and Eros in Plato 's Charmides sophrosyne 75 evil.' fawn into the just such a of I felt I'd been of caught by said Kahn (1996. Jowett 1961. p. 187-88). I would suggest dramatic prolepsis at work in the Charmides. I to resist what had been an this. in which Alcibiades tells the assembled guests that one of his early 1. 187) It also preserves the ambiguity care the text: a someone on the subject of a provide a meal handsome boy 'to take lest. thing. 82). puts 6. more 184). like in advising fawn in front of a lion. p. since he can speak 4. (1977. though rejected as a definition for courage and in the Charmides of and for the Euthydemus only becomes pp. McAvoy (1996. The with Socrates included a bit of wrestling. 25. Cf. pp. proposed this activity in the belief that "surely something would come out of also Dover 1978. 3. 54-55. 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." this . he stood himself him how he in relation to Kydias with respect to wisdom. by way of advice to presence of a lion and be snatched as a portion creature. 513f)innuendo of "one little see McAvoy 1996.Drama. 7. principles 542-46). and Kahn (1996. as here. but in those works he does not. . 102." observation has been p. he also thought. If Plato's readers expected even from Cydias the more usual relation lion fawn :: erastes : eromenos." 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. the passage in the reading than the one I propose Plato meant to elicit. 1988. 179-80) captures the ambiguity of but seems to indicate Charmides as the referent for the lion: "When speaking of a p. not opposing view. makes the comment that "a chatterbox [adoleschos] is simply a white it. Bruell was aware of was part of this point of made by North (1966. p." "dates" with conversations. (For an pp. p. the Symposium. 146). the dialectically for trained philosopher kings of Republic V-VII (Kahn 1996. by Mahoney (1996. Plutarch. for example. he "[Cydias] for the beast. by which of fit neatly that there is a Socrates' ac tions and narrative anticipate of Plato's and more expositive. theoretical explorations Socratic eros in the Phaedrus especially in the Symposium. pp. 73 n.' seemed to me that I had fallen victim to a wild animal of sort. This recently. Hyland (1981. 2. address his remarks to a specific second-person listener. And gave some power his awareness of all his wisdom. in the Laches. 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. [Cydias] said. NOTES character other dialogues in which Socrates narrates directly (as opposed to narrating to another in the dialogue. Narrative. 154). 27) and. p. pp. so to speak. well: "Socrates was not simply outside of himself. that thought the experience. see the critique of Kahn 1988 by Griswold 1988. For the 5.) kind kind of reading I have been pursuing here. 'Take care not to go as a meat. while the middle help the reader to a fuller understanding of the earlier works." someone. the effect would have been an even more protracted pause 8. as in the Protagoras and Euthydemus) are the Lysis and the Republic. Alcibiades. who by this time was entirely smitten See Socrates. in Kahn's work 203-9. concern " for p. Although the specific details of his interpretation would perhaps to the 550-51. handsome boy. together with his irresistible passion .
Ithaca. 1966. Edmonton: Academic Printing Publishing. 63-103. Pp. Hanmondsworth.76 Interpretation 9. D. 1961. 1981.. lacked sophrosyne in its in its manifestation as a kind of knowledge. C. The Virtue of Philosophy: An Interpretation of Plato's Charmides. C. "The Platonic Synonyms dikaiosyne nal sophrosyn and American Jour of Philology 72: 395-414. Journal of Philosophy 85: 550-51. 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. T.. It is with Menexenus. 1996. . and Jowett. MA: Harvard University Press. Charmides. Cambridge: Cambridge Press. Plato and the Socratic Dialogue." Mahoney. Potae Melici Graeci. E. Griswold. "Carnal Knowledge in the ern Charmides. "Plato and Erotic Reciprocity. Pp. Watt. 1978. Plato: Early Socratic Dialogues. ed. Plato. "self-control. H. 1996. eds. Hamilton H. B. North. L. 1986. 1996. 1977. Sophrosyne. Kahn (1996. J. NY: Cornell University Press. Human Journal of Philosophy 34: 183-99. Ed. like Critias a member of the notorious oligarchic regime manifestation as Athens therefore also Peloponnesian war. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Charmides. Kahn. p. 1962. M. 1951. 1986. D." South Dialogues and with Plato (Apeiron 29. "Unifying Ancient Philosophy 5: Halperin. Nussbaum. Pp." Dialogues of Plato. "Socratic Politics Charmides. Greek Homosexuality." 161-204. In E.. The Collected Dialogues. M.. trans. 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. The Fragility of Goodness: Luck and Ethics in Greek Tragedy and Philosophy. 1988. 99-122. 163-209. Page. Saunders. Cambridge. "The Charmides: Socratic Sophrosyne. D.4). "Plato's Charmides and the Proleptic Reading of Socratic Journal of Philosophy 85: 541-49." and Self-Knowledge: An Interpretation of Plato's Interpretation 6: 141-203." Dover. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. C. Cairnes. Athens: The Ohio University Press. 1985. Sophrosyne: Self-Knowledge and Self-Restraint in Greek Literature. K. McAvoy." Classical Antiquity 5: 60-80. trans. 1988. "Platonic Eros and What Men Call Love. University Larson. Oxford: Oxford University Press." REFERENCES Bruell. Benitez." and also reasonable to suppose that intended his to the Charmides ruling and the prejudice that after the Charmides. In T. 1987. Eng: Penguin. Hyland. D. C.
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. Marx to as to attribute Burke's of apparent lack of principle his love of lucre.'" any essential difference between the two revolu tions. His own Whig party with his condemnation of the French Revolution was inconsistent went so his for the Americans. he had played the liberal against the English oligarchy. He was the American Revolution because their of against Parliament during indignation. Burke's apparent inconsistency was also criticized by Paine. in the pay of the North American colonies at the beginning of the American troubles. and his himself. 26. Public had decayed in both instances into hatred and revenge. 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. was an out-and-out bourgeois. No. Burke them to threat of tyranny less from the selfishness of the bourgeoisie and from interpretation. He did not support the Amer ican Revolution because it He defended it ent protected the absolute right to freedom and equality. and one must ex as plain peculiar defense understanding of justice liberty they relate to prudence. He op spirited saw the aristo- justified by a legal doctrine sovereignty. posed the revolution in France because their doctrine the rights of man was leading ness anarchy and a subsequent military despotism. because he thought that both revolutions supported the rights of man. He them have wrote judgements thought support formed judgements far on extensively on both.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. 1 . was becoming of a tyranny. Paine failed to grasp the consistency of Burke's judgement because he failed to grasp the reasons for Burke's support of the Americans. Fall 1998. Like Marx. Vol. because he thought both were part of an historical movement towards not see Marx did freedom. if one is to make sense of his differ judgements his the American and the French and Revolutions. and on prudential about grounds.
there is a strong of as the part of the British. one learn to the universal and permanent problems of political life in his treatment of the political of issues of his time. Parliament must use the form simply suspend to punish of law to war. because it must regulate both the relation between citizens as well as the relation between citi ciation zens. fight the to rebels using the an law. who are gland. The political asso is necessarily a mixture of the general and the particular. rebels. His speeches letters are informed by the immediacy of of events. and it is no small thought that part of the art of the statesman to they had their limitations. not disobedient want to Parliament and unfaithful to En them. On temptation. also the nature of law to be just. 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. he had to reflect on politics as a encompass whole. equitableness of the because it is threatened a two different and fronts. as he is for being a defender of constitutional government. Justice has two different aspects. he also famous for arguing that policy needs to be guided by prudence.78 Interpretation privilege. yet it must also execute partially American traitors. Burke's rhetoric and reasoning appreciate the broadest questions about justice must and government. than from self-righteous cratic authority and self-righteous rebellion fueled by general and abstract ideas. In doing so. one gains the distance faced philosophy The without abstracting from the concrete political problems by citizens and statesmen. absolute and abstract character of cannot theory is a poor guide principle. must those same citizens must treat as enemies the rebels and foreigners against they fight. but treasonous criminals. Burke's defense ciation of and of prudence against principle and theory requires an appre his art. love of country is a defense foreign domination. in order to persuade his audience about the meaning To events. The political association is constituted by both the on aspect of law and the aspect of patriotism. the on account of the war being a civil one. It is the nature of law to and the British have modified theirs to ensure ought not to its bite. while partiality to whom one's own country. A disobeyed be effectual. He is keep them justice of law consists in its impartiality. rather than law. but punishment. He did not write a theoretical work on politics. see his thought and his peculiar genius. The American The British do rebels are not only thought of as authority enemy. In order to exact wage defeat the Americans. and foreigners. The the law is against defense against internal tyranny. 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. Yet. The law from corrupting one another.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. It is. the habeas corpus in order to and unenforced law is not a law. however. The whereas the justice of war consists in treat its citizens equitably. Its force .
however. well suited to The theme of of Burke's letter is very an its audience. they pervert even the natural taste and relish for equity and justice. He gives to the sheriffs political reasons. they wish for peace (p. they are destructive to justice wars strike Civil deepest of all into the manners of the people. of the whole body of our nation affection and new kindred. The very names become incentives to hatred and rage. 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. they are not gether an the bonds of affection between citizens. they dissolve alto of the common idea good. Their cynicism and 177). they both an require a bond of love that is accompanied by a feeling simply negative and destructive.5 melancholy are not. and by bringing the partiality of war into law. proposing a policy. By the of law into the British destroy honest patriotism war. of the realm of policy is very disturbing to Burke. bringing generality with hate. they corrupt their morals. a hostile light. 189)4 which were the becomes gradually less dear to bond of charity whilst we agreed. Britain's combination. or rather confusion. The hatreds bom either civil or of broken love have be a vengefulness that is not excused by war. His opposition to the party by courage in the war party is . when the communion of our country is dissolved. realm of war and there needs to as a distinction between the for war the realm of law. They have lost confidence in justice. public spirited reasons. Burke thought that civil wars were the worst. and he the foresees attempt grave consequences from it. Their problem is how to restore peace without the sword of justice. He in effect helps to mold and strengthen a peace articulating the issues. any more than its justice ought to overreach be enforced. necessity Although law the common good. and making a show of face of popular and Parliamentary hostility. In order to maintain the integrity of law. and this is where Burke steps in to make their desire for peace more than just a humane Ameri and pious hope. By teaching us to consider our fellow-citizens in us. but they have not lost their humanity. for pursuing peace.Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs overreach of Bristol 79 the bounds be of the bounds force of what^can its justice. The spirit might partial of murderous hatred dominates in its and in its object and patriotism devotion. devoid of hope. because and piety. Of most all wars. (P. the required is of an extent that goes well beyond the equity required for justice under the realm of law and law. It is in this background of Parliament's to use the law as an instrument of war that Burke writes the Letter. The Sheriffs Bristol have grown cynical and are sworn has become melancholy because the law to which they instrument of crime and tyranny. They vitiate their politics. 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. and the slavishness of despondency the extreme consequences of Brit ain's corruption of the law.
those whom that act the act The second purpose of qualify by the name of pirates. 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. 179). put to death the the cargo amongst American men. 178). 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. the British themselves. . defeat. because they do the possibility of their own deaths god. 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.80 Interpretation defense of expressed as a justice against tyranny. than law. rather giving it to treasury (p. THE PARTIAL SUSPENSION OF THE HABEAS CORPUS The partial suspension of the habeas corpus has two objects: "The first. by treating fourth. the guilty justice in four different ways: first. is behaving like who appear tyrant. In fact. in fact. The determination infamous action. by treating innocent citizens inequitably. as long as it shall think . Parliament has taken the tone a criminal of an angry and all powerful but. proper. Burke argues that the objects of the suspension corrupt the order of crimes. Burke says that it under the cloak of naval is the British to be the pirates. third. traced to the all-consuming anger of Parliament. they take the confiscated cargo. 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. blurs the difference be (p. the distinction itself of American rebels as pirates was made with the add intention allow of insulting them. contrary. the British the will not even allow them the pity owed to the con demned. The British will not them the respect owed to a noble love of liberty or to a formidable enemy. Although piracy and their equation treason share the same sentence tween mistaken virtue and (death). and then distribute a war themselves. Their hatred is not entertain accompanied by pitiless- ness and fearlessness. Hatred determines the crime. . The determination tableness of the law of enemy rebels as pirates undermines the by confounding the order of crimes. inconsistently. 178). and. therewith. 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. is to detain in England for trial those who shall commit high treason in is pleased to America" (p. by confusing by be denying the accused a fair trial. to enable administration to confine. because. but. 179). image of death neither softens nor horrifies the British. second. to the they rejoice at quality of the action. to infamy to punishment. The determination a it.
that they will become savage. makes them of Bristol 81 lower than the By moral qualities of allowing their indignation to dictate the order of crimes. Not only does the trial of Americans in England corrupt justice. Burke does habeas corpus not hesitate to precedent point out that the partial of the has its justice in King Henry war. 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. object of their own insults. as if In they is have killed British in to prove themselves virtuous. the absence of justice. After strength not is American should defeats. because the legal process appears to be nothing more than a cover for the arbitrary will of Parliament. 180). 181-82). 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. . it acts like both a its actions are not justified by country. 180). but it does produce punished not even the desired effects of punishment. tying half dead in England). corpus The second object of the partial suspension of the who shall commit is "to detain (p. The spirit of just victory is completely lacking habeas in the British. of a The mere thought of shackling the to have them arrive ship (only where Americans. The punishments serve neither or nor the ends of which are victory. ought to evoke feelings of horror jail. rather than the the crime. finds itself in god a world where strength and a tyrant in so far as is the only claim to authority. their proper time is cannot give punish after the war. taking their goods. in England for trial those But these trials cannot high treason in America" bring possibly be just. Yet the English in will await a pro they have lost all feelings of pity and humanity for their fellow Englishmen in America. far from making the British godlike. The accused is. but not according to justice. VIII (p. the British more insult them order by calling them cowards. they Britain are only hardened by the punishments. it and expresses of itself in simple or the domina of tion. peace. (pp. tried ac cording to form. it be the imprisonment killing enemies. both. because the accused cannot possibly forward witnesses to defend himself. manly defiance becomes the only virtue. them down and then in the hold tossing them in forma trial. Parliament denies a place for patriotism in the moral order and. therefore. This attempt to punish the Ameri cans through the law brings the law into disrepute. and Burke suggests that this pitilessness will become a permanent part of the British character. This manliness untempered whether by justifications and fears. Parliament its proper time and place. 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. but also in its description of American soldiers in general.Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs Their wrath. should the ment English be victorious. therefore. and The proper place for the punishments is in America. Parliament replaces justice with force and will. because it is blinded by its own indignation. This insolent men as some only reflected in its characterization of American naval pirates.
belief in What not makes the partial suspension of the habeas corpus truly dangerous is would its corruption of law. Burke says general venoms equity. It hardly seems just. But the British punitive. liberty principle. It dissolves the nation be citizens without the dissolves by dissolving shared the common good. . this action. expediencies of war necessitate the unequal treatment of prisoners. naval men as they were allowed to go free. The unequal treatment of American prisoners only treats the guilty unequally. At the end of the war. innocence and guilt dependent to do with therefore not to pardon the remain upon circumstance. The issue liberty is really requires the Liberty a common good equality under the law. because it between citizens. The law be of no effect most if it were opposed feelings and ideas of the people. never mind possible. as a life was given in return for a life. by breaking draws the first principle of law. 184). The hatred affection between the British and the remaining bonds of English in America. But. respect for justice has Since the much how consistently the innocent an and guilty with are treated. it is more prudent not to make crime and punishment respect issue to prisoners. accords with them and moves them partial suspension codifies their further in the and same direction (p. however. to punish the exchanged prisoners. openly denies some men their rights while protecting those of others (p. en one of it to a greater requires degree (p. but its to the corruption of manners. Apathy is the accompanying obverse of legislated hate. corrupts justice because according the action the earlier prisoners should have been punished. far from being the opposed to manners. 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. 182). that it be The partial suspension the distinction between men in the differ ent realms and. This offense to threat to political liberty. the worst aspects of the partial suspension.82 Interpretation The punitive hate of Parliament even extends to the exchange of prisoners. The The exchanged prisoners were ing prisoners is to make clearly pardoned. the limiting qualification. far as he tell. Burke finds it disturbing that the partial suspension. 188). because it is The empty prisoners are formality of legal proceedings and the inconsistent treatment of not. 186). parliament is incapable of such prudence. justice is the as act's can most dangerous is a that. like the deter pirates. the British are intent on punishing as traitors those prisoners who remain mination of American of to the yet reasoning in their hands (p. It shakes the foundation of the nation general. because it leaves no place for decent political attachments. therefore. instead of of taking out the sting. but the distinction between men in the realms treats the innocent differently. justice possibility The partial suspension destroys public spiritedness by destroying the public.
the confidence fueling their hatred (recent that victories they have not increased their authority.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. Parliament's fury appears both ridiculous and irresponsible. In sheriffs that order to give privy biting information concerning the real threat foreign powers posed to Brit in the last year. made the reminds them British feel invincible). he says unknown a reality. Burke asks the British to look between the people and their representatives. 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. 191). the attachment to country. it blinds them to their own nobility and their own good. He reminds are threatened by their rulers even more than of by the rebels. have with doses of fear. and moral Burke must appeal to private advantage to moderate the British. 189-90). He wants to awaken in the people the jealous love liberty. British of as individual citizens with individual interests One the ways to make the British think about their welfare is to destroy. They have the shamelessness to celebrate the names of victory of German are mercenaries and to concerned with herald the German generals. Burke raises the the unknown. if only through fear. in love of country. Burke can move With the reawakening of his rhetoric from fear to shame. be can fore they be enlightened. The specter of foreign powers is meant to re awaken the ties of kinship which and the love of country. dark. and full of perplexed and treacherous (p. attempts to moderate the extremes of hate and apathy by encour and aging the belief in virtue past. despite American defeats. The British must doubt themselves. He even wishes that some abuse of the partial suspension would touch them. he tells the he was that the mazes way ahead is intricate. The British have spread devastation but have only the ground they encamp on and no more. Their hatred causes them to live in the pre sent. . He speaks to the consciences. British disaffection for their past connected to a lack for their future. He first reminds the British of their noble order to en a representative of the traditionalists. 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. as they are Burke's letter indifferent to its injustice only because they do not suffer from it. But the British have lost their honest prejudices which supported their love of liberty. public Since British spiritedness has decayed into hatred in order of Americans. with because they harm to their Burke regards of less it British virtue and glory than doing enemies (pp. Burke Having specter of British doubt the certainty of victory. He even uses images to induce doubt and fear. He even speaks as courage justice. In obstinate light of the dangers lie ahead. of concern But.
84 Interpretation It is The and no excuse poorest for presumptuous ignorance. as if they kindred blood pours like from the arms of foreign soldiers. and notable their private and they mortgage exult themselves performed some water exploit. helpless creature. the cold doses of fear that Burke throws nal the heated anger of the British prepare a more ratio discussion the war. Burke suggests his audience to conclusion for themselves) that the British should quit while they are ahead. contending for a violent (P. He reminds the British that the goal of the war was to increase their wealth. they their country. and satisfied to be himself mean and miserable. show little are content to real magnanimity. With the awakening of their interests. pair facing the Brit ish. 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. states to the . "no blood pays the forfeit of [their] rashness. of uncertain In light victory and certain understood as Burke reinterprets this partaking famous of death. without a consciousness of other qualification for power arrogance. contending to save itself from an object respectable justice cannot oppression. any without civil wisdom or military skill. rather than to punish and to subjugate. or at money in the form of best the British can hope for is to not receive them. 191) Burke to shatters the upon illusion of Parliament's bear its strength. Those in favor of the war. dominion in which he cannot exercise. is in the eyes of God and man. order to render others contemptible and wretched. 199). the taxes. They (he British invincibility draw the He but of good fortune. actually the hypocritical others. Parliament needs wis dom be and justice. but they will thing In light of this hopeless prospect. He has been building towards an explicit for reconciliation but tion and greed. calling for battles which but his servility to it. bloated with pride and he is not to fight. No desolate widow weeps tears blood over [their] ignorance" (p. those in favor of peace are acting responsibly. 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. They they would offer themselves promise for battle but fortunes hire German mercenaries. Burke has for his plan. The British can at best hope to maintain trade monopolies. He also tells them that they will not get one cent from America. Burke must discuss the rewards of war. closest least the to save their reputation not to look weak and foolish in frustration and defeat. being that crawls on the earth. Far from man's of being cowards. manliness and cowardice judgement. Being godlike authority by bringing reason limited in its strength. rather than simply force and in light of the real situation must will. By prepared the ground argument reducing British hopes to the salvation of their reputation. far from being manly. 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. when in triumph. pride of a coward. that it is directed by insolent passion.
195). 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. both addresses popular and parliamentary. Just a short time . and Burke shows As things stand. He is be heard but is rather competing for their ear. Burke argues that rebellions are provoked rather than encouraged. and be trusted. therefore. He is cautious in his blame. the power under will be popularly recognized as such. 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. the Americans can place their The way to form and strengthen the peace party is not through parliamentary debate. he wards ate it slowly by first arguing that the Americans cannot be peace. they must earn that trust. 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. because his objections to its policies only increased its obstinacy. remains as he stated earlier to Parliament in his Speech on American Taxation and. This is his moves to first statement about British guilt. of Without the affection and strength Englishmen. above the voices of many. Burke has absented himself from Parliament. 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. Honesty and prudence compel him to take his case to those decent citizens in whom there still exist justice and pity. He is the people doubt Parliament and. cynicism. to that to reconcile while of in a position of strength is magnanimous the glory Parliament. THE ARGUMENT FOR RECONCILIATION The of argument for reconciliation must address itself directly to the accusation treason. themselves. rather than certain tyranny. to be the for the the war in England.Burke 's Letter to the Sheriffs of Bristol 85 British. the Americans are virtually alone. The obstacle to almost unanimous support with peace seems. therewith. In order to and break this whom circle of hate distrust. the British must form a strong peace party confidence. 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. He directly to the unanimity by which Parliament justifies its by first drawing the distinction between agreement and truth. Burke's not criticisms of disputing their right to trying to make unanimity are not direct criticisms of the people. he must invoke a truth beyond the source and collective or conventional of wisdom. as it is asserted that talk of peace encourages rebellion (p. (1774). to risk with defeat their own arms. the Americans must trust in themselves. by pointing to the arbitrariness of Parliament's American policy. Burke turns to reason as the foundation his policy.
Burke people not justified by an abstract legal right. Parliament to tax the Americans. Par liament must. Now. legislative The not government should exercise its rule with as much reserve as possible. The arbitrari can serve as a wedge its policy cannot but induce doubts that the lukewarm from the majority While Burke dares British politicians. he can accuse aggrandizement. 210-11). at best. having recently tasted victory. 205). so as to offend the people. (P. waves of chance and.86 ago Interpretation Parliament unanimously opposed the war and was willing to negotiate a peace. The people are. 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. because Parliament has given itself claims the right over to doctrinaire fanaticism. Burke recognizes Parliament's sovereignty only because it its power has exercised for a long time and continues to do so. but that their desires should be respected because of their strength. Parliament is unanimously in support of the war. The argument for reconciliation on an argument about good government. GOOD GOVERNMENT In the Letter to the and ity of Parliament Sheriffs of Bristol we see Burke attack the ruling author defend the colonists. therefore. but it is nothing in the direction of affairs. even though right of they have no representation. He is thereby domestic politics. 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. but people. to separate not accuse the British nation for the war. by habits argues that abstract Parliament rules for the He does not argue that the have rights. rather than oppress it. Due to the strength and the constitution ought to have offices which can variability be appealed to of public opinion. 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. He turns their traces the cause of the war to bad politicians government. that it is not will be resisted. because Parliament claims to have the sovereignty. 207) omnipotence. granted social rights (pp. but that no other given part of only the invidious branch of taxation that legislative rights can be exercised. be governed. I must attend to public opinion. its passions and mind are enslaved to the prevailing fortune it meets. it may be the mind. It rides the of Parliament that is fearful in victory. when public . beg leave to observe. can neither be admired by those who love virtue nor ness of followed by those who worship the promise of success. Burke paints a picture and cowardly in defeat and confident and insolent Parliament lacks the gravity and constancy of reason and character. therefore. because the British had suffered defeats. Parliamentary of obedience sovereignty is (p.
Freedom then be understood as to any government it is understood by the Americans. religion more the monarchy. from. one sees that he flatters hopes to put pressure on and Parliament.Burke 's Letter to the Sheriffs opinion changes. however. ment. 211). it free would know that the Americans must are averse other than a one. like authority. the clergy and of maybe even veto and its legislation. It requires compromise. as it was by the New Whigs. Reason cannot tolerate an freedom in theory is its death in inconsistent principle. 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. whereas politics tends to blame entire constitu demands gated. and. because of the fixed sentiments and beliefs Burke the people. just in they are needed (p. The this lower world (prudence) is needed to secure the blessing of the lower world (peace). If Parliament had listened to and had studied the Americans. In light freedom. then the responsible should party Parlia to case of the American Revolution god of be prudent enough satisfy complaint. of all becomes such tyranny as and usurpation because freedom is thought The perfection of in an extreme form. rather theory require tions for injustice. Burke the veto power of with the monarchy. to be mistaken. which The British make a studying the are not particular circumstances prudence they must decision. not because of a perverse humor. Freedom is not an abstract principle. Parliament must be heard. as a defense of freedom in general. and it must have the to appropriate offices for the appropriate complaints. freedom others. Burke is quick to point out that. doing what one wills. the charac understand ter of those over which it governs. but it which gains might strength through the knowledge that there Since institutions in so public opinion is they important. Compromise If the in the the and reform. than the particular men in power or an easily remedied law. parliament can no longer legislate religion. politics. . Thus it is wise not destroy case the convocation of the clergy or any other ceremonial also mentions offices. Freedom. but with the belief that the problem is not with the entire constitution. They practicing (the god of this lower world). through pressures placed on. they embody than parlia ment. but are account thinking in terms of an abstract legal doctrine that fails to for the character of the factions. any more than is sover of eignty. If one puts together his discussion of good government of his policy reconciliation. of Bristol 87 The government must act as a kind of grievance committee. But Parliament is are not attention to public opinion. He condemned the French Revolution in no uncertain terms. compromise to the extent that first principles are better left uninvesti By painting the world in extremes. is of theories of susceptible government to the ex tremes of theory. but because of a consistent opposition to the influence of ab stract theory on political life. the particular men running the govern people are sane enough responsible to articulate their particular grievance and blame those ment for the problem. and even independence. The voice of and his friends is are a weak minority. ought not Burke's defense of American freedoms.
Abstract ideas . on the are bom more from vengeance than an government. He is critical of favorably the disposed to the former but the latter two. the latter has its in the wrath sovereignty fortify puni hate because they make authority absolute while denying the opposition the right to exist. He even considered civil war worse than are more savagery. No taxation of a parliament without representation does not deny the legitimacy It is to exist or legitimacy of grievances against one. thus denying claimed the church. The idea as of no taxation without representation does his criticism. collective are bom from disappointed trust. 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. and the monarchy the status and rights they for themselves. General theories passions. Interpretation one must understand the demands of each faction and what is needed to satisfy them. because they only extend and exacerbate the evils of civil war. The British Parliament the authority of a god. Burke sees fanaticism leading to the practical both anarchy and tyranny. they affection. the aristocracy. The French revolutionaries made their anger absolute by claiming principles of and serve General freedom to tive to speak for the rights of man. it implicitly legitimate The rights other possibility of legitimate authority as well as rebellion.6 ire of an atheist. and savage cruelty. 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. Moments authority lived. made themselves absolute by claiming they denied their opposition the right to resistance. bom of sovereignty and rebellion tend to fortify the most extreme of self-righteous of the most extreme circumstances. not a principle that is destructive of all order and prudence. idea the common good or of legitimate while The former is bom source of the antitheological of a god. 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. In abstract theory. rather than acknowledges the hate. because it is a principle of compromise. rather than cod ified. they claimed to embody mankind. because the hatreds of civil war difficult to satisfy. do the doctrines of the rights of man and the absolute sovereignty of parliament. of man and the absolute hand. as he saw that philosophic replacing hatred by lending fortify historical meaning to killing the enemy.88 thus. of principles of destruction that sovereignty of parliament are. 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. These feelings and ideas of significance drown out the feelings of pity and horror that are the humane emotions evoked by slaughter.
In not fact. 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. broke faith. he must have an understanding of the ends of government and each of the parts contribute to that end. 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 defends decent morality accuse and obedience to the law as necessities for a free people. The legislator must whole. the revolutionaries treat country in the way as would a foreign conqueror. He argues that the revolu tionaries slandered. could and satisfy their books by confiscating church property speculating it. 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. guilt. They destroy . order a of how This is especially the case in a philo sophic revolution. 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. and especially to science. The goodness of the cause and the wisdom of the laws cannot be reduced to mo tives. and placed personal gain was before their ideals. the aristoc and monarchy. might Some Burke of being fact reductionistic and opportunistic. 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.7 He gives them human feeling justifies their exis He shows their virtue and beneficence Burke also with which they were painted.Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs is to restore simple and of Bristol 89 the and feelings of pity. to law by evoking the pity fear accompanying the breaking of it and. greed. because the citizens need theoretical principles for knowl edge of their rights and duties. and the tence. In this. who resented vengeance and on their exclusion from title honor. Burke removes the claim to justice with which they excused their faithlessness. he never argues that revolutionary idealism than a platform and in effect. It is a stage upon which Burke brings before the racy. their persecutors. though in theory. is contrary to the first and principles of politics. in particular. and affection by describing suffering crimes of innocence of the murdered and the stupidity. The Reflections justifies obe dience then. malice. and executions. The Reflections. pocket- anything more by which the merchant class. confiscations. Burke says that the first law of revolutionary legislation is to their own destroy all that came same before it. horror. eyes each of the revolution's victims the church. just as their crimes are contrary to human and divine law. By looking into the actions and motives of the principles of the revolution. is helpful for understanding Burke's opposi tion to abstraction.8 The incommensurateness of theory and politics comes into focus most clearly in the revolution's activity of legislation.
they of any interest. This defines their task and wisdom of their new Burke struction. for the work of reformation: because their minds are not come good. which if it operated alone would make them more rage are carried away with such headlong race towards every desperate trial. Their them. . 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.9 The critical negativity that stems a love of ridicule is compounded by the detachment These and abstractness of the scientific mind. He is aware that all rebel lion contains evil. united them as a people. humanity (Pp. he teaches limits of both. nor fanatic visionary. philosophers are fanatics: independent tractable." Burke denies cause him to despise the By showing theory. It is who are undoubtedly true. of from the declamations astonished and buffooneries satirists. that they . they do the not seek to reform but to build from political science. almost says that the revolutionary legislators have a disposition towards de that They have the taste of Paris. and that the habit of criticizing and good breaking the law tends to must give make human beings completely lawless. Your legislators seem to have taken their opinions of all professions. those are unqualified habitually and employed in finding and displaying faults. 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. . The legislator have of in his soul. would sacrifice the whole human to the slightest of their experiments. but that does not the conflict between politics and mind when rational. though it may paradoxical. Like the of the good seamstress. Burke has two types in he speaks of the thorough- . the modem atheists are revolutionaries that politics politics.90 the Interpretation beliefs and habits that nothing. philosopher. it always flies before 520-21) defects must of Hate cient and abstraction are the legislative soul. God. but things. are ready to declare that they for the good they pursue. yet he must not spectacle of injustice that he hopes to bring The legislator is neither about a Utopia through punishment and persecution. they from love men too little. he the appearance of continuity to mends and patches. because moderation they are defi must in love. is at their horizon like their horizon. ranks.10 Burke's understanding legislator is inextricably connected to his understanding of the nature of politics. which means they have feasted exclusively on satire. Philosophy not place be so him beyond the suffering blinded by indignation at the nor vengeful his fellow human beings. The ancient sceptics had no public spir itedness because they thought the law was conventional. who would themselves be if they were held to the letter seem of their own descriptions. offices. . but in general. because they think politics can be made can be made fully rational.
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. chemistry and geometry can produce a association. and order to do so it must must division and of labor. 524). its rela tions depend more graphical accidents than upon numerical necessity. begins with the idea that the end of government is the satisfaction Government is independence not made in virtue of natural rights. the uniqueness of human beings 301). cannot recognize the politics. because it deals political order upon with number and The is not. they to represent and to secure those interests. Its rebel to be used against them. and may in and do exist in total degree much greater . rats. while geometry reduces them to number and shape. 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. The geo boundaries and of political associations are are meant formed by interest rather than symmetry. possibility (Reflections. atomism except by a principle of order. 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. and he ways on different occasions ridiculous absurdities.12 chemistry. however. decent morality his rhetoric and Burke understood that prudence and used were threatened by the French Revolution. Chemistry reduces human beings to their lowest common element. substance Chemistry and (matter) its own geometry can only recognize the categories of quantity. in fact. therefore. and recognize recognize and the peculiarity of the political But chemistry and geometry are material and simple. to have the power of ordering. In formative act. a mathematical order. His attempt to restore the political perspective from that of abstract rights and science of wants. The number geometricians who are and shape dividing ask and. and exist in much greater clearness. but these are the two categories over which a man has no control. whereby chemistry creates and order uses its materialism to oppose groupings authority. like promises proportion. 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.Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs bred metaphysician of Bristol 91 the geometrician and the chemist. however. up France create districts according to for loyalty to a measuring stick. and Reduction and abstraction are the essence of their sciences. which of it. an un geometry differentiated mass. creating Burke does. Nothing can come for infinite divisibility. At best. unique character of Geometry. Legislation is deliberative p.
developed its own Ideological differences. from the funda mental end he derived a new basis for the rule of gentlemen and a new under standing of ancestral authority. 370) Burke did of not a contrivance of derive from this end the equal right of each to be the sole judge oneself. to tax in order to restore American trust. for America had. Government is human wisdom to provide for human wants. He also points out the opportunistic reasons that lie behind the opinion that all excuse themselves is selfishness. or rather conflicts provisionary mode of principle. 221). The belief that the cause government it is conducive to resignation. inherently Why would corrupt is a servile belief. people can Burke thinks that the live content under the watch of Parliament. Burke opposed abstract was against began. of government. Burke therefore He have been virtuous men who cared about the public. asks the public to government believe in virtue and to believe that corruption is not innate to like to (p. do not rise to dissent among the people as naturally as do particular situations which clearly threaten their welfare and their liberty. of Thus he amongst argues that "unsuspecting which all confidence is the true rest" centre gravity mankind. 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. Unsuspecting confidence look after is simply trust that the government will not be oppressive and will interests. Unsuspecting interests confidence assumes that the government will look after public and not their own private interests.92 Interpretation of abstract perfection: a but their abstract perfection is their practical defect. To the contrary. By having right to everything they want everything. He begins where other modern theorists but he combines the fundamental good with the old order. since the belief in argues that there civic virtue is impossible (p. then there must be moral . theory in the name of the satisfaction of wants. courtiers and political men would public in or der to enjoy freedom from scrutiny and indignation. If Parlia had the Americans and by differences between the British covered. but because he wanted to it against abuse satisfied from both authoritative and rebellious pride. or to an equal share in government. But the actions of Parliament and the arguments of sophisticates suggest that all men act solely for themselves. then all the political the Americans would never have been un by this point. Burke hopes freedom and to cure apathy and cynicism with spirited jealousy is of one's own belief in the possibility of civic virtue. not political because he temper ment the idea of right. such. The doctrine that because moral man is selfish poses a great threat to leveling made destroys trust in government as unsuspecting confidence. If there are to be compromise and freedom. give repealing the tax. 215).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. (P. 222). about the parts are at (p.
This necessity of justice that equality The understood as qualified by country. Every edge that nation must exist somewhere to the exclusion of other nations. 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. is gentlemen have defending the habits of continuity on interest in property and. but. not so much because he thought there entailed were no such rights. rather than connections of its sovereign. 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. a Unsuspecting blind faith or apathy. Some have so much authority to the past that Burke must . therewith. Burke thus suggests is rare and weak.Burke 's Letter to the Sheriffs indignation directed that virtue at of Bristol 93 the government from time to time. Burke con guardian their fear to be a that the of their virtue. and a brutality of accepting of political men. there would be no brake on as them (with the exception of a preferred military dictatorship). it must means justify its borders to itself must to others. 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. 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. just the aristocrats and parlia confi ment must show some concern not for convenience and wants. 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. avarice. on habits of continuity gains the thought that prescription gives any basis in one's but also ennobling. but they do are not possess the character and mind to demagogues. however. satisfy those grievances. but trust that is called to account and office. an Perhaps most important. The people are the product of the constitution. The as are though people dis must. 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. The issue of property to that other moderator of takes Burke away from the satisfaction of wants partisanship patriotism. they are too strong to oppose. 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. of the people actually threatens the satisfaction of wants. They competent to judge their grievances by their feelings. from time yet does not require the usurpation of authority Burke preferred unsuspecting confidence to the rights of man.14 birth that form own will or consent are not continuity and community. in which it depends. therefore. should the people rule. natural Burke thought the rulers. they provide only necessary Burke's attempt to found attachments and authority attachments without status of morality in prescription. If be a nation and is to be more than a band of robbers. have dence is to time degree of public spiritedness.
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. Prescription Burke's ideas a matter of of political convenience and political pa process triotism. The best can constitution is not the product of the of practice. not think that the British constitution was the best form of government origins and because it had divine because it was his own. mind. all other Those ingenuous feeling minds who are so fortified things. . never harmony between natural desire and that history constituted a realm of be real. It is something to be Although He respected. Prescription the constitution is satisfying want. 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. History is so far from being rational that it is turned to in order to support attachments that are threat ened by reason. To the contrary. . and beneficence.15 The hidden hand is not. It gives the political body continuity and its citi zens a shared past and a shared providence destiny. 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. Contending for an imaginary power. . rather. it is viewed as an unintelligible and superhuman force. however. Burke believed that rational. Burke never thought reality. force.94 Interpretation a have been He did traditionalist. viewed by its beneficiaries as a series of accidents grounded in man's desires. and so unarmed to whatever approaches in the shape of disgrace. tion or even an proven idea that be conceived greatest independent Prescrip beneficence. The origins are inferior to the end product. He economics. 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. because he never believed is not Hegel's state. brings a degree of the common good. Provi dence appears godlike in its mysterious dispensation. satisfies and its benefits are those habits of virtue and affection that preserve the constitution. but the end product does cess not exist independent of the pro by is which it came into being. But Burke did not equate the ancestral with the good. we begin to acquire the spirit of domination and to lose the relish of honest equality. 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. Liberty is in danger of being made unpopular to Englishmen. but he never allows the idea of impartiality or universality to dominate politics. 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.
The partial suspension. B. 1980]) follows Marx in 1. (P. In to preserve prudence and public spiritedness from cynical politics was not that of a suspect particular. country a universal suspension would serve liberty and by awakening the sense of urgency amongst all the citizens. he apathy sought to preserve the perspective and attachments of political life. contains its abuses within it. but because he loves virtue and country more than himself. Macpherson (Burke [New York: Hill and so far as Macpherson saw in Burke a bourgeois capitalist above all . be executed with seen past that NOTES Wang. The suspension would outrage the public if it were abused at home. He is ment and goes well beyond the presentation not godlike himself as a virtuous representative. 223) By fighting prudent a war with with laws and punishments. but rather in his beneficence and wisdom. The greatest fault of the partial suspension of the habeas corpus is that it He is not one of the people. 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. but they can trust him. the British Parliament has in fected justice hatefulness and expediency. Capital I (Moscow. so or a misanthropist. which will retire they considered as sure means of honor.Burke 's Letter to the Sheriffs of Bristol 95 finding these principles. Prudence makes the former feasible. he is in his self-right eous wrath. espe cially in the great. which which he lends credence. to be grown in disrepute. although Burke recognizes the power of public opinion and public opinion the need to work with it. He age gives an account of himself as a representative in order to encour the belief in virtue and the love of liberty. he and sought indignant fanaticism. not leads to tyranny and misanthropy by destroying an idea and a feeling of the common good. Burke offers no greater counter example to the extremes of his time than himself. C. a God. and he encouraged the people towards a measured jealousy of their liberty so that they would not become either slavish or ambitious. 260. to foster the love of Furthermore. Karl Marx. in order to guard against their authoritativeness and brutality. but that his portrayal of the problems of politics and much art unless his defense he had its perspective could not perspective. he also recognizes the need to recognize virtue. It would have been much more universal for it simply to only the other while suspend the habeas corpus universally. In turning to life of the prescription and polemics against theory. as an alternative to the Burke did not citizen and of portray the life of reason the statesman. only because they have elected him. 1954) p. He does not court power the prevailing opinions of the people. disheartened and disgusted. Burke constantly encouraged prudence in the governing. on hand. the latter necessarily corrupts. His Yet one cannot of visionary. So. Unlike Parliament. Burke himself is be an example of judge of yond the salutary hopes to virtue.
10. Phaleas for advocating equality of property. 364) and thus he could not For Burke's vol. CT: Greenwood Press. artisans the military) would be loyal to and the city as a whole. sympathize with Burke's ideas of prescription. 282-83. pp. pp. But he did give the any property. and wished to be learned in nature as a Hippodamus did his ambitious dress according to the different seasons. The Complete Writ 1945]. vol. ultimate differences. 4. his regime on the number 12. and by looking at the man. was cited within the text as Reflections. 1854-89). Phaleas'. 9. pp. pp. 350-52. 279. 2. many other cities. This abound psychological account of the many political reasons that in the Reflections. Hippodamus models three. W. 1994]) argues that Burke's understanding of change was not informed by conservative opinions. he failed to understand the unique nature of on the politics. Glorious 1984). He he thought he was the first person ever to propose died in battle. 431. in whose 6. of govern 3. pp. therefore guaranteeing a military dictatorship. they both ideas. 1992]) argues that Burke's decisively determined by the fact that he was an Irish Burke fails to appreciate Catholic. In from looking to the number three for order. Reflections Revolution in France (Harmondsworth. 358. but by thoughtful considerations about the protection of liberty. p. 94. he denied and the artisans arms. farmers. 1. 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. CA: Sage. rather than his ideas Hippodamus was ambitious.: Penguin. Jackson Bate (Westport. Nor did Hippodamus know He thought that instead of voting innocent or guilty. Aristotle draws attention to the importance of Hippo calling him the first political scientist. 15-16. Works. Hippodamus failed to understand the nature of political order. 282-83. 1994]) argument. 431-32.96 else. attempt 8. Burke says that the genius of the of the old regime. The faults of Hippodamus are the most important to both Aristotle damus only. three sections of the city. Old Whigs. and the 7. he made the military the farmers by giving the army their own property. vol. Eng. 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. and three kinds of legal suits. All references by to the Selected Writings of Edmund Burke. James Conniff (The Useful Cobbler: Edmund Burke State University of New York Press. remarkably similar to Aristotle's criticisms of Plato's. Politics. vol. 1960). There are three classes of citizens. remind one of the old man ed. 382-84. 2. and Aesthetics [Thousand Oaks. Conniff finds him too cautious for not advocating vol. Hippodamus thought that his and rulers would be popularly elected. vol. 164. wore by cheap whole. Politics of Progress [Albany: 2. Edmund Burke. Interpretation Paine thought that all hereditary government was ings of Thomas Paine [New York: Citadel Press. 8. jurors and . a more participatory form vol. p. although ment. 5. but according to his fancy. 520. but I think he emphasizes the aesthetic aspect of Burke's politics at the his political thought. independent farmers of the and that all the classes not (artisans. Conor Cruise O'Brien (The Great judgement of the French Revolution is Melody [Sinclair: Stevenson. reflections on progress see The Works of Edmund Burke (London: Bohn. portrait. p. and to Burke. vol. 3. page number alone are 3. be legitimate according to the laws 287-300. Stephen Browne (Edmund Burke Alabama Press. 6. vol. 439. tyranny (Thomas Paine. and warm clothes in both the not winter and the summer. Furthermore. Burke's criticize the attempt to understand politics through abstract and mathematical criticisms of the legislative science of the revolution are Hippodamus' best regimes. In An Appeal from the New Revolution that it pretended to to the 11. and the 2. was so He knew nothing about the influence of force and interest. 31. and Aristotle criticizes Plato for trying to make the city a unity. 533. Burke's Despite their to define a realm of political existence cannot but remind one of Aristotle. 101. and Hippodamus for his ambition and simplicity. adorned himself with expensive ornaments and long hair. p. In desire to know nature as a whole. 7. Works. pp. The mind and the disposition of the Sheriffs clearly character Burke writes A Vindication of Natural Society.
406-7. In the Spirit of the Laws. 431. pp. p. 1987]. Strauss has in mind the realm of thought. Nugent (New York: Hafner Press. trans. as in the French Revolution. p. find a standard of History [Chicago: University legitimacy through providence British constitution. 2. NJ: Transaction Publishers. Williams ("Burkean Descriptions and And Political Representation: A Canadian Journal of Political representation can still serve overcome it. he opposed a universal understanding of justice. Thomas Aquinas. natural right is an indepen dent principle that used as a standard for political 16. rather than action. of Chicago Press. rather than the presumptive. sanship. 1965]. 1954). the man of actual virtue. He honors for those individual judgement. Works. (Harvey Mansfield. Stanlis (Edmund Burke [New Brunswick. to hope against all odds in the heat of battle. p. Works.237). 29. 294-95. in Strauss concerning Burke's understanding of providence. 1.Burke's Letter to the Sheriffs should of Bristol 97 be able to vote in shades of grey. pp. according to their also proposed authoritative verdict impossible. 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. pp. 77). 470. He failed to and law is undermined by the habit changing it. thus making an who improved the law. 1993]. Reappraisal. of Chicago Press. a person of actual virtue defend the presumptions against dangerous theory. 151-53) law theorist in the tradition of St. vol.149-52). because he thought it made prudence impossible. Strauss claims understanding of prescription undermines the idea of noble defeat. Burke's one solves problem While Burke is able to anchor the and political only to pose life in general. Mansfield's analysis of the difference between presumptive and actual virtue helps to clar of ify Burke's relation to political life pp. According to and Leo Strauss (Natural Right attempt to another. 15. 331-33. susceptible of of infinite improvement. Thus. Science. 13. he is vulnerable to the problems connected to his providential god. Like Burke. When questioned. pp. pp. as opposed to natural rights. Frohnen (Virtue and the Prom ise of Conservatism [Lawrence: University of Kansas Press. and even expected. because understand on he thought the law that the was like the arts. against abstract doctrine. vol. and actually increased the harshness of tyranny where it threatened authority but could not Melissa S." the ruling majority and 14. Montesquieu argues that the opinion of one's own security is the end of the law. 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. 432. not simply its evident usefulness. Harvey Mansfield (Statesmanship and Party Government [Chicago: University p. case of the Edmund Burke [Chicago: presumptions University Chicago Press. 1949). vol. Canavan. Canavan is for Burke life. 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. takes issue with Providence [Durham: Carolina Academic Press. is taken from Montesquieu. 1. 1984]. 348. for men of action are often. 6. . who lives according to the actual. those presumptions must are Presumptive virtue rests on about justice.9-10). 1991]. Burke's emphasis on unsuspecting confidence. uses his understanding to support men of political prudence and virtue. and Canavan (Ed mund argue Burke: Prescription that Burke and is a natural particular. vol. that its authority depends habits of obedience.
it is incoherent. argument and action. presentation of this argument occurs less commonly observed that the in two waves. as it stands." In interpretation. 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. Fall 1998. 5. Vol. but are inseparably It is joined. New Orleans Next to the things themselves the the greatest what writings of the philosophers seem to pose works difficulties for interpretation. "deepest. to interpret this drama. and that in its composition these aspects are not merely parallel or complementary. It is generally recognized that Zarathustra presents an argument will according to which the essential core of all somewhat things is the to power." Preface. In our efforts to do so it is useful to begin with the consideration that a drama is composed of two essential aspects. 289). 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. 1 . therefore. 26. The first crests at the end of Song. In the second. . Within their only clue offered to the things are never they seem and yet the discovery of what is is what seems to be. is a work that dramatizes the attempt of a man to we are called interpret upon the things themselves. . 27) seems to The book that Nietzsche himself have considered his Thus Spoke Zarathustra. but to those whom he "the wisest.Interpreting the Twofold Presentation of the Will to Power Doctrine in Nietzsche's Thus Spoke Zarathustra Steven Berg Loyola University. Zarathustra offers a revised to his teaching regarding calls the power not disciples. No. A genuinely philosophical book might to the golden bowl of revealed with some plausibility be of whose con compared stitution Henry James's novel." 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. the truth observation surface." 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. Beyond Good Evil. The acter of philosophical readers of his books .1 As readers of the book.
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. however. Once deconstrucreturn its deeper levels are taken sight of..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. Zarathustra will relinquish his than superhuman status by going down to ignorant men and distributing man his wisdom to them. he and wishes to "go down" to again. This under persuading live. but as such to be more than human. ridicule and hatred. one of these version of a man called Truthsayer. It seems that Zarathustra to will somehow attempt to confirm his wisdom through its distribution. demon strates the false character of that doctrine Four a as such and. insights the articulate the kernel of what comes return. As it is attempt presented in "Zarathustra's Prologue." however." men in order to distribute his wisdom thereby "become empty is defined dead. If it is primarily the fact that he is wise rather than ignorant that accounts for his superhuman condition. Appealing directly to the multitude. of Thus when Nietzsche's utterances Zarathustra is through which simply as collection Zarathustrian Nietzsche gives voice to understood his own opinions. the will to power proves to doctrine. therefore. 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. of accordingly. e. however. he is met with incredulity.4 If Zarathustra is human.g. no mention is made of it in Parts Three read not and the work.3 At the opening of the work it is made clear that Zarathustra not only takes himself to be wise. the superman." 8). Zarathustra relinquishes his superhuman status may then only ultimately to renew or reconfirm it." this account. then the distribution. his first distribute his wisdom to men is an utter failure." man since more man by his lack of wisdom or ignorance. like the be merely a superficial or partial aspect of his thought. In the light appeals and of this failure Zarathustra upon a novel strat- prudently further such direct fastens . According to one auditor of his speeches he is lucky to have escaped with his life ("Zarathustra's eschews all Prologue." But this his means "to be again. much passes for the core of Nietzsche's philosophy. therefore. he is not a god: part of his wisdom is his knowledge that "god is He is.100 Interpretation to response his invitation to "seriously the test" "wisest. 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. however. 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. 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. It. Overburdened by its superfluity.
law. That is to say." or power over neighbors meaning various creation of all victory "the high. the Still. including his soul and mind. the It is the of the creator that brings the law into being and. despite their variety. according to Zara thustra. its things. The first of this wisdom will to power. em but rather what good and evil. "On the is to be interpreted or understood it to as man. the good for man is understood by the law to be convertible with moral virtue. which those speeches are first and foremost concerned to articulate not what is being." "will to for the first time. 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. in the Aristotelian phrase. Since the of about good and evil are derived from the laws the various political commu nities. Jews because all and Germans all speak differently about good speeches and are formed by different laws. The understanding and interpretation of interpret the speeches of that one being among speaking believe it being or. in accordance with its law. the life of the superman ("Zarathustra's Prologue. calls "praiseworthy. 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. this activity is directed to sustaining people of which the people to gain legislator or creator expanding the power of the is the founder. root cause of all the will to power is the things. the first. as Zarathustra calls him. the apparent: he believes that he is in being. require that beings who speaks: man the rational animal.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. Thus whatever allows a and victory or power over itself. power" In that speech of Part One in he ploys the term Goals." holy. however. speaks to man only being." Here he that if be made to speak. the people. But being. one Afterworldsmen. Zarathustra does knowledge of not possible to gain an immediate access to since being is through examining the speeches of human beings. therefore." 9)." character of his alleged wisdom becomes of possession of a causal own knowledge principle "all including is the the being of his knowing. all of of good and them. activity stands the legislator or. according to Zarathustra's understanding. "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. agree in articulating an understanding evil as identical to virtue and vice. since. he insists. Persians. Zarathustra proceeds with As the narrative unfolds and his attempt to initiate his disciples into his teaching. . 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. acting in the light of its truth. Behind the creator.
to creating creators. law that is. standing above and ruling a humanity they have helped to fashion. according in what to Zarathustra. perhaps. a law that is. That the related political and aspects of claim. it were. At the close of Part One. in his farewell speech to his disciples Zarathustra looks forward to a superlegislation future in which his friends. that he cities of men. 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). overarching then. 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.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. To create great endeavor. This new "light to the will itself recognize Zarathustra as the source of its light and. It is with this end in view has descended from his his mountain solitude to offer his the same a That teaching. but rather fellow creators." nations" among its brotherhood of equals. as it were. but identity between them. human beings seems necessarily is. therefore. as an expression of the indefi Zarathustra human. the coming to be of the superman. 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. nite laws. however. 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. is Zarathustra's goal. is at one and new teaching in the time the distribu as tion of wisdom and the promulgation of a law. 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. therefore.102 We Interpretation see that. Zarathustra. in Zarathustra's own words. that "humanity it plasticity self or in the proper sense does not in fact exist. divine. to a Virtue. 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. first no people" the successful completion of this promulgation. believes. is indefinitely being of infinitely malleable and that is simply a reflection of the essential being of all beings. insofar as he takes the paradigmatically human speech to be the authoritative speeches of the law. the to power. indicates. It is this than human. 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. Zarathustra to wish to establish not simply a link. however. directed to producing a determinate number of subordinate legislations or. their legislation will also be the first to have been articulated in the . longer disciples.
At this culminating moment hind his veil." 1). saying that Zarathustra fails in this endeavor. friends and fellow creators ("On the Giving Virtue. It will be a legislation in perfect accord with man nature of and man man's things or. 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. while bringing humanity first time. But Zara these thustra identifies the have perfect possession will of wisdom with secured happiness. the authenticity of his superhuman if he is indeed able to make another like himself or confirm That is to say. humanity being If he is itself into successful for the in his endeavor. simultaneously confirm the truth of his wis condition. 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. it and as well. but teaching as from Zarathustra's speech of command own teaching. The of his knowledge have become of coextensive with the horizon the law. by and made of same means his happiness made ("Zarathustra's Prologue. as it were. reveal himself to a his career. Accordingly.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra light of 103 the the truth of being." 3)." things. This teaching is is engineered produce within them the freedom of mind and will prerequisite to the activity of comprehensive: creation. but animal gods are and superman. Through it the political animal the rational animal will have been seamlessly joined and the law and made one." 3). Zarathustra will. the superhuman creator over his human creatures. 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 . as he At the moment of the Great Noon man will no principle of all join longer is the between animal and god. It almost goes without fails is the question. 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. this his account of the core of all beings as will to power and as indefinitely since plastic. 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. 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. in celebrating the feast of this new epiphany or. 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. a natural law. "the Great stand Noon. 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. create dom and. rule of a justice that is identical to a certain form of inequality. will creators. therefore. 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.
of course. What and grotesque of a devil. must reject in full awareness of what it is they are rejecting. In "The Child which a child his disciples. as Zarathustra has argued. 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 . on the basis of their own or ate this truth for themselves. but about himself as the the basis of his inadequate understand mountain retreat ing of the dream. opposed to Zarathustra's own doctrine of justice as inequality. that the to pave the of teaching he believes to be a path to will instead prove way to enslavement and self-enslavement. What this incident another is that Zarathustra's attempt to make at like himself. to create his equals in the form of fellow creators."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. of course. them to become his enemies and suggests that from another. he henceforth they now bids last sufficiently prepared his friends for this rejection. the Zarathustra as "Tarantula" "preacher equality. 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. which marks the cul mination of a series of engagements with his "enemies. 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. however. By the seventh speech of Part Two ("On the Tarantulas")." victory over he bites him of and infects him as equal revenge. rushes his teaching. the distribution of his author. they may appropri they may reject it in full awareness of its truth. "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." in other words.104 Interpretation so ing The that. Zarathustra and down from his of what to rejoin his disciples practiced upon purify his teaching it by his foes. 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. 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." of first half his of Part Two. lies the desire for suggests This doctrine is. his venom. appears independent inquiries. The venom of the Tarantula is his doctrine justice ity at the center of which. of latter. Nonetheless. Neverthless." Zarathustra seems to believe that he has at Consequently. to be absurd. it is precisely what made clear at the awakes at Zarathustra demands Two. 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. however." "divinely strive against one At the same or moment. This interpretation.
In order for Zarathustra's disciples to become fellow creators. The distribution of his wisdom create not equals capable of rior creatures of his will properly receiving returning his love. is perfectly self-sufficient self-legislation or one's own will their wills from any other. as through such distribution cre like himself. that is. That his disciples but fail in their his enemies efforts to free themselves from Zarathustra's tutelage by becoming however. On the one hand. fellow creators and wise instead result in one of two remain his disciples may returning equally unsatisfactory situations. they may transform themselves able neither to cannot from friends into accept enemies of Zarathustra and. and adhere to and fulfill this teaching. disciples and. In attempting to liberate their wills from subordination so all to the will of another they subordinate themselves to the will of Zarathustra. And in creating while rejecting the true teaching of creation they are determined not by the truth of the will alone. But precisely in such rejection they obey the final command of. but infe who will always fall short of his own perfection. 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. consequently. dependent position as disciples and attempt to become in their own autonomous creators right. munity is now apparent to Zarathustra. If they are to become his equals in creation they must reject that teaching in full awareness of its truth. 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. they must liberate above oneself as one's it.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra 105 that (Begierde) ate another to give and receive love effort to with perfect mutuality. requires that they his teaching as an external determination upon their wills. prove incapable either of or even of they may reject their properly receiving the gifts of his love. but by the falsehood of their willful ignorance. as Zarathustra setting up only law ("On the Way of the Creator"). 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. 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. Moreover. the com incoherent in its own terms. made clear through stands following reflection. therefore. therefore. to establish a community of and reciprocity. It . be his love nor to offer love to him in return. this condition with another. On the other hand. Creation. dependency disciples' upon or subordinate status to the will of an Thus the truth of Zarathustra's teaching. and this is men. that is. has its motive not wisdom and thereby his superhuman simply a desire to confirm his but moreover a longing to share condition. therefore. is under in pursuing the their own independent activity of creation. which reveals Zarathustra to be the legislator of his reject own supposed self-legislation. and It thus reveals Zarathustra's distribute his wisdom.
" Consequently pedantry. 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. my virtue grew it in "The Night Song": "my happiness in giving died in tired of itself in its overflow. will supplant the for love his the perfection of Zarathustra's giving or creation proves to be at the same its undoing. confesses that this he In no longer knows where he is or how to go forward. 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. Through wished to pro- his legislation and the transmission of ." Through its distribution Zarathustra distribution distribution proves to sought to confirm own terms. revenge. but by self-mockery. will produce in his relations to his recalcitrantly inferior disciples the sad passions of envy. Yet that thus be impossible in its of This impossibility law. he is in useful a state of aporia. 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. rather than confirming his happiness or bliss. As "The Night Song" predicts.7 either to command another to be free or to will a Consequently. ("On the Giving Vir 1). 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. compatible with the moral law insofar tue. Zarathustra's attempt to combine jus perfectly reciprocal tice and love. 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. self-sufficient a them aware of their own poverty and dependence in relation to He will put them to shame.106 Interpretation be impossible for Zarathustra to create another proves to proves to like himself because it be impossible love. 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. wisdom. and the desire for revenge within his soul. spite. the punishment or desire for soul.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. As he puts giving. consequently. The dominant passion of the preachers of equality. dancing of a group of "lovely wisdom." 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. 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. with his wisdom.
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. Though in his trayal in a dialogue with his beloved Life of his unsatisfied thirst for and ongoing suit. in "The Grave attempts follow he of to resolve his perplexity by jettisoning both his understanding understanding and the political good. He cannot painful beyond endurance. 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. the just as final political order. and to have ascended to the naked truth of things. 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. therefore. pursuit of Wisdom Zarathustra comes close of a to the ophy and. 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. Thus if in Part . elaborating of the beautiful. the word "philoso por phy" nowhere appears within the speeches of Zarathustra. 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. from the perfect possession of speeches that beginning. and that. to secure the good happiness for his fellows with and himself. 381). Accordingly." 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. all human community established upon the basis of the law. That is to say. in which the just is included as false appearance. or that love is incompatible with the self-legislating freedom of the will. he has identified perfect happiness with the and the two wisdom. of the rational good.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. the In doing so he considers himself to have stepped beyond the limitations of the political realm.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra vide a comprehensive solution or 107 to the human problem. and the good. the rule of the creator over his creatures to the advantage of both is impossible. since. The in wisdom and toward the awareness of self-contradictory nature of Zarathustra's Gay Science. the morally or legally determined under and pursuit of wis philosophy. and his beautiful as the loving community of the believes to be a new extramoral account what he instead wise. in his his newly won awareness of his the ignorance because he finds perplexity into which he has been thrown he misses the mark. As he reveals at the close of "The Dance Song. that false horizon now of the is. He man as political and man as rational and distinguishes sharply between concludes that the only genuine good is a transpolitical good. therefore. that understood need on is.
that is. the conditions of possi bility and his his actual enjoyment of will. 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. In other words. but of itself personified as a malevolent host assembled to oppose and thwart vulgarity him in his endeavors. for having corrupted the souls of those he loved best spite. rabble who are those whom the Tarantulas or preachers of equality serve: the of vulgar or well or the great majority fountain human beings. however. e. fundamental doctrine ple of both his He original and his revised teachings remains the of the will to power. 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"]). and reaffirms the will to power as the first princi Song. consequently. 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"). envy. order to lay a wreath upon the tomb of the lost loves of his In the course of the lamentations he offers loved dead. That is love were to say. Zarathustra blames his failures position." 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. 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. and however. 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.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.g. Nevertheless. and by infecting them with the vulgar or base passions of.. a love expressed in (seligen Geister). Zarathustra's primary opponents. 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. happy. His creation was supposed to guarantee both "eternity" the perfection and of his love. and his revulsion before and the low extinguished his love. Zarathustra's la angry accusation as mentation. the longing for revenge. control of The failure of be brought completely under the the distribution of Zarathustra's wisdom to to . As is his habit. 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. "enemies" however." 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.
He adopts a dogmatic skepticism. he also concludes that any particular vice. "whatever I oppose how I love it rooted I have to it and my love: thus my win will have it. ing") Zarathustra his revised version of the will No longer addressing himself to his disciples. in expressing its or unlimited character. but perpetually limitations upon its own activity.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. In the immediately following articulates "The Grave Song" ("On Self-Overcom to power doctrine. 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. must be to the status of a transitory and so false fabrication infinite of the will to power. 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." creative It is identical to the creation of values as an ongoing activity or to the ever-renewed . therefore. and the of the by the infection of his longing for revenge." indefinite plurality or virtue and all of its creations that he originally sought to limit.10 At the end of this same speech Zarathustra offers his new extramoral ac count of the good. and resurrects the creative activity of the can continue will highest The will to power doctrine. Zarathustra thus replaces his dogmatic moral wis dom with an amoral skeptical wisdom that nevertheless remains grounded of the will fundamental dogma to power. he says is. "the good." again and soon and. In doing so go of rest he lays to as the as his desire for love good. The greatest good. 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. but to those whom he calls "you he now embraces precisely the unlimited character of the will and the wisest. seems of to be this disgust youthful enemy. For the will. manifests itself in an infinite becoming. It is a protean mon must not that hides its essential indeterminacy in the ceaseless production of false in his and ephemeral appearances. he realizes. and indignation that have led to the premature deaths his loves. Without himself being aware of it. 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. Be that it may. As a conse good and evil quence. destroy ster such self-created only perpetually create." Life. His cannot skepticism extends to all supposedly final knowledge. spite. as well as relegated teaching concerning limited and any particular teaching now regarding the character of being. however. in the infinite power of the will. 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.
If the creation of values requires the legislation morality. will's "sublime" character good. 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. the false char acter of which is fully recognized by forth renounce any desire to enlighten the minds of its creator." he describes himself depths. 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."" de Zarathustra's of new paradigm of the highest life in the ." as a form of artful play. of course. which he has come to identify of a with beautiful. destruction of values as its Accordingly. But the ceaseless creation of values requires the ceaseless precondition. through the examination of the laws the various peoples." as a "still sea" whose calls riddling surface hides "impenetrable of the The infinite. 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." self-concealing above cre beautiful moral ideals. must veil itself in the false the appearances of wholeness and com pleteness of the moral ation of beautiful. as a whole through the transmission of Consequently. necessarily imprisons the Thus Zarathustra of mind and will those upon whom he imposes his creation. It is. ascended from the plurality of accounts of moral virtue morality. . Zarathustra describes it "On the Sublime. the possession of wisdom. naively (The Gay Science. the destruction of values.110 Interpretation of fabrication transitory teachings of good and evil as virtue and vice. 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. But the "values. in clinging to his its freedom. his desire for happiness as he understands it." 2). 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. Zarathustra is understanding and a now able to distinguish between a of good and (false) evil. then Zarathustra must hence his disciples and mankind his wisdom. or itself stands the gloomy seriousness of those ideals. 382. the self-sufficient freedom at the expense of the enslavement of everyone else. "Thus Spake Zarathustra. necessarily the greatest evil. from opposites. that moral has compelled him to distinguish the the good from virtue. entails moral (true) extramoral understanding He argues that since the greatest good. the false perspective of the moral law. Ecce with all that was Homo. law or or as he it there. 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. himself to purchasing his its first principle. Gay Science when he speaks "the ideal of a mind who plays divine" hitherto If the called holy. he . for. wisdom and will and And. . virtue and vice are immiscible Zarathustra originally thought of that he had. good untouchable. as the highest good. the creation of values.
Symposium reproduction of his own good. and. however. of another like himself.207a). the undiscovered in the furthest sea: after it I call my sails to seek and to seek. He listens carefully to these speeches. now wishes to the beautiful a means to "procreation" ("On Immaculate Knowledge") or the activity in the person of another. 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.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. to the end of reproduc words." as he calls it. in new doing so. 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"). as a means not only to realizing the freedom of his will. with caution and of subtlety. He will attempt to direct the sense with another human being. the beautiful becomes a kind of rase through which the 206a. Plato. anew out use the rains he has as Zarathustra." 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. comes to understand the implications self. but ultimately to the generation. 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. Zarathustra himself has done. and create engendered. demolish it. As we have already observed. never given a proper sayer comes but is simply called "the to understand is that Zarathustra's attempt to of Truthsayer. therefore. think through. he values the admittedly political community. It creating on a will fail because each of activity in the person of another Zarathustra's successors can predecessor." 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. Zarathustra In other gives dren." "now I love only my children's land. its fundamental incoherence. the realm of ing the life that is free on and slavery and informed by the of falsehood. in some indefinite future. This fellow thinker is name within the work. 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. his old moral teaching. The reproduction of the good is guaranteed (cf. Zarathustra of attempts to demolish the tradition he confronts. help lower level than his The reason for this . is now understood by and from the intercourse radically of one human mind with another. truth. 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. this second Zarathustra will penetrate as as riddling surface of the regnant Zarathustrian teaching.
In his dream Zarathustra has . the high point of Zarathustra's best moral teaching. The implication seems to difficulties that the Truthsayer has foreseen. just the prophet had predicted. 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. Zarathustra the Third. In words. and regurgitates an odd assort images of resurrected life. 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.. become the "night-watchman death.. During his draw the col experiences a second nightmare in which he seems to appro lessons from the Truthsayer's He is the prophecy."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. serve as a vehicle for the reproduction of own activity: his own successor.112* Interpretation as decline is sibility perfect of follows. Thus. 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. in which "shallow swamps" reins of political rule men. despite the in some to this region of the dead. everything That is to say. 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. however. 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. as it were. 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. everything is one. but rather a all efforts of creation and was.14 have been handed over to the ignorant Zarathustra is laid low lapse he priate by the "prophecy" of the Truthsayer. Nevertheless. in his dream Zarathustra sees that." climate in which "the best grow tired of their works" "harvested" after having predominate or the multitude of vulgar "rotten fruit" and. will exist on a still lower level and not only in terms of creation. of Zarathustra's his successor cannot. the future continues way . therefore. bursts open. 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. therefore. the Truthsayer foresees that Zarathustra will engender not a second Zarathustra. If Zarathustra's successor must destroy cannot the Zarathustrian tradition even in order to clear the way for the creation of his own." and grave-watchman on the hill and fortress of guardian of other life that has been "overcome" that lies in as coffins around him. but in terms of knowledge as well. Consequently. 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.
namely. 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. 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. This insight is cause. . 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. Zarathustra." Zarathustra has the come to that the apparent salvation of his revised ac count of the will to power as the perdition of creativity. 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. Much as we would like to know how the lieves the difficulties the Truthsayer "drowned. when combined with seems to suggest that a initially encouraging to Zarathustra be his understanding of the will as self-overcoming. but to willing this willing. of therefore. 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. the series of tradi follow in their decline and renewal a necessary and need course. Dis courses on Livy. if any one necessity fall under one of a among the infinite finite number of kinds regime. Whatever the Truthsayer may have had shared. recovers he appears to fathom the full significance his that dream. not to willing all of the past. more to Zarathustra's own teaching that "the will is a height from which we creator" ascend to the makes began. 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.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. The suggestion that Zarathustra immediately following seems this account that the will must learn to "will in its backwards" to refer. is the causal principle of number of of those peoples. From this low point. then. to say to Zarathustra at the meal they by the speech of Part Three realize entitled "On the Vision and the Riddle. at least at this point. however. If." will Truthsayer posed responds to Zarathustra's ostensible solution to the problem he has for him. the peoples must of Yet. Nietzsche does not afford us this pleasure. 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). the Machiavelli.2).
he therefore makes a virtue out of this way the will so the becomes. its to necessity by willing the eternal as it were. must past and Accordingly. then he must submit to secondary cause within the nexus of causes being will merely a dependent deter mining the necessity of recurrence. being is an Accordingly. 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. but the way eternal recurrence of all as to reproduce it in the or things. eternal return of . 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. time itself is sees a Zarathustra. 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 . implies the that the recurrence of the past and the future recurrence of the moment in which the eternal return is known and. the dwarf replies with the cos "all circle. cosmological whole that appears to By willing the recurrence of all things.114- Interpretation his doctrine that at the core of all then Zarathustra must reconsider unlimited power. therefore. In a last-ditch attempt to salvage the freedom of the will that he understands to be the highest good. Zarathustra's Riddle" own gloom over this insight is or in "On the Vision heaviness" and the by the voice of the . in which it may be willed. regimes implies a circular recurrence on the cosmological scale or that a power at the core of all being must give rise to the . namely.' "My day-wisdom mocks all 'infinite worlds. according the Zarathustra's current understanding.' 'Where force (Kraft) is. . "O Zarathustra high. since if he cannot will the past in such a future as his own creation. the As he says in "On the Three Evils": For my wisdom it has more says: "" force. the first cause own willing: recurrence of all things. . The truth Zarathustra believes himself to undermine his to have discovered. 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. however. but every stone that is thrown . then the creation or represented will can never be first cause and there can be no genuine liberty in this sense. saying. Thus. "dwarf" the "mind of of wisdom! fall!" who mocks You have thrown yourself you stone him. however." mological and necessitarian version of the thought of the eternal return: truth is crooked. 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. In of the whole of things and first cause of it wills its own will or becomes self-caused. seems fundamentally teaching first concerning the freedom of the will. . 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. he now concludes that the circular recurrence of finite finite same.
Zarathustra trine and in fact describes himself as it.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. that is. The presence of the low not only persists human life. 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. as Zarathustra now describes it. of It is. of sickness" therefore. 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. 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. the result of what he takes to be the highest human activity. the thought of the eternal recurrence of all things is the or. 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. ." 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. Though his insist that his never "spit" "destiny" is to become this doc the teacher of the eternal return." Moreover. "foreseeing" longer man. 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."17 In the thought of the eternal return the doctrine of the will to power as necessarily entail self-sufficient and shows. 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 . Thus Zarathustra explains that "the small disgust at man . freedom will at its peak. despite the rosy "monster" his into animals paint of "snake" it. the of the ." That "the man recurs realizes would eternally . choked me and crept . 21).16 dominion would the Truthsayer prophesied. but the per recurrence of the bad in the form of the lowest and smallest sort of the rabble. paradoxically. the life but is in creative great effect of in. all would be one.18 does this promulgate "monster" having he is from him. that this the first and final cause of all knowing animals and all being is decisively refuted by Zarathustra himself. knowledge would Thus. . Zarathustra's and spit advice to the shepherd shepherd is to bite rises off the snake's head is it far away. When the no does this he up one laughing day?" and "no longer shepherd. nothing be profitable. the that has crawled his throat. into my throat.
Finally. Far from having escaped the its justice. is in accord with reason. of a of parts of Zarathustra as it was published under Nietzsche's attempts to author ity may be characterized as follows. Therefore it shows both that which a complete causal account could cosmological order. as a means through which to realize the the political community and account of highest good. a good that lies beyond the justice of its moral law. but is ine rather a projection of and the political onto the natural realm. however. which this The self-contradictory is the image of a cosmos in double causality of the will. "purification" That the drama philosophy The three can Zarathustra is ultimately devoted to such be seen by reviewing its overall trajectory. the will and its desire for and i. in Part Three. Zarathustra's revised version of the will an expression of the most to power doctrine passion. character of grounded the thought of the eternal return. of not be given. In other desire (Lust) for eternity words. and that genu knowing will. namely. 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. of as on the awareness of the goodness of need and the the other hand. In doing so he offers a teleological the beautiful and the good are wherein becoming in which fundamentally is distinct. of "justice" "freedom. Nietzsche's primary Platonic recovery of Socratic sense.. 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.20 freedom his of mind are incompatible his "wisdom." 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." revenge. however. In Part One Zarathustra found a political order that principle of all is truly just by structuring it in accordance with the true being. shows such a cosmos to be impos a "rational" sible.21 need. its law and sway of the rabble. on the one hand. that the will is the primary phenomenon and its freedom being. In Part Two he attempts to employ the becoming of the political community. 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.e. but. love and. the thought of the eternal return developed. 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. he discovers that the presence within philosophy in the midst of things is a good that cannot be made to fit . is in the deepest tension with the principle of the life of philosophy.116 to Interpretation all things under the bring political realm." 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.
The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra a -117 beautiful to the whole of justly ordered parts. 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." 3." turns out to be Cupido or Eros. He is simply the most thought Truthsayer. As such he is the closest thing NOTES 1. The Truthsayer is obviously neither a disciple of Zarathustra's teaching nor a creature of his will. 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. it also points to the partial obstruction that the political community and its justice pose to the acquisition of that good. Behind the 6. good and evil when the Chairs of and "On the Old Tables. Preface. Zarathustra. Of course. University of Chicago Press). are behind Zarathustra's thought of the eternal return is in "On the Convalescent. Zarathustra's mind of is the "mind heaviness" of ("On Reading heaviness." 5. On the simplest level. belatedly offers the most fundamental kinds of regime: rule of the one and rule of ("despotism"). but by only by his community in Zarathustra's the speech and thought with community based not upon the mutual possession. ful man that Zarathustra has chanced that he has to a friend. See Letter to Karl Knortz 2. 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.22 upon in his wanderings. Zarathustra has aspect of the political community that is recalcitrantly his understanding of man. 4. however. Tablets. but the mutual pursuit of wisdom. but that nevertheless conveys a good ness totality is of things which would made possible not be absent from such a perfect whole. 8.'' something like an analysis of rule of the few ("nobility") and the many ("mob-rule"): "On Old and New "devil" 11. of this In the original dogmatic and and legislative version parody may be Zarathustra's characterized as follows. 23). and therefore of being. That the made clear of speeches of the Truthsayer June 21. after having covered quite a bit of ground in his thinking. 4. 7. 10. if the refutation of Zarathustra's claim to wisdom points to philosophy as the human good. examination of This discovery human the or political a things. rooted In neglecting to perform an analysis of regimes. 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. p. parodies "wisdom. Cf. Zarathustra's painted of Socrates' Second Sailing Song" (Chicago: distinction between the necessary and the good. 1888. 9. appears to offer a 11. 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. Zarathustra later specifies the ignorance of human beings Virtue" as believing they and know New what is they do not. is "the attempt revenge" mind of ("On Redemption"). Through the twofold parody twofold presentation of Zarathustra's "wisdom" Nietzsche of philosophy. 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. 202." Nietzsche philosophical version writing its artful completeness or finitude. also see Ecce Homo. Writing"). 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. He explicitly Zarathustra as a . Beyond Good and Evil. It points to the Seth Benardete. 153. See "On Cf. In Part Three. in that irrational.
pp. overcoming of need. Nietzsche's "On publication of Truthsayer. 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. IV. or Zarathustra. Homer. trans. 1988). Cf. namely. Michael Gillespie Tracy Strong (Chicago: in University with of Press. reproduces at its peak the contradiction that stands at the center of the traditional morality he had hoped man-god decisively to transcend: is. II. 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." 16." Thus Spoke Zarathustra represents his attempt at such a solution. 15." "The Truthsayer. Row. 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. 13. to uncover that which is unchanging in the nature of things or fundamental problems": see Beyond Good and and Evil.118 Interpretation preface parody in the "'Incipit to The Gay Science. as man. 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. 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. he then goes on to Zarathustra concludes from this self-refutation that is pp. 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. "The speech Self-Overcoming. 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.'' Great Events. "Proteus. The Wisdom of the Ancients. 1935]. 1984). but only on that of philosophical writing. Vol. Unfortunately. 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. See "The port of Wanderer' and "On Blessedness Against the This thrice-reiterated Jesus Will. his revised wisdom in which mind and the unconditional freedom and self-suffi ciency of the will were to be perfectly combined. 14. as god. in community with the lowest of the low and submits to suffering the greatest of passions and. 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. 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. the realm of ignorance and falsehood. 23. 12. It should come as no surprise." Life's be is self-overcoming weaker steals. ed. 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. 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. "historicist" offer a not interpretation accordance Nietzsche's "the philosophical intention. Odyssey. lacking ." renunciation is the negative reflection of Peter's thrice-repeated renunciation of immediately before his death. XIII." 1 1." 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. 17. 28-31. As Nietzsche's Zarathustra makes clear. Zarathustra's p. what 53-54." is the im "On Zarathustra's three headshakes before his disciples in Part Two: and see "On the Poets. the political between the philosopher's pursuit of the truth must include an examination of the false appearances of the political realm. In the words of dictory: I myself am phie myself cause Karl Lowith. it would require "something double. therefore. to articulate (Nietzsches Philoso 197). where he makes reference to the last aphorism of the original edition of the tragoedia' latter work. 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. wonders whether in the way of his understanding the thought This renunciation certain other philosophers as well." 360-425 and Bacon. . The Eternal Recurrence of the Same. . 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.
chooses to treat which Nietzsche's are arguments 213-27. however. characterizes world following that terms. too too soul had been bitten idea by the moral tarantula Rousseau. Dithyrambs of Dionysus. 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." 21." eternal desire longs for "The Other For all desire wants itself: "The Drunken Eternity. for the smallest just. on account of his 227)." necessity in the form of bodily need: he insists on a meal before indulging in speeches. 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. p. by "convictions" ("Antichrist. How lovely it is words and sounds exist: are words and sounds not rainbows and bridges of appearance soul (Schein) between the eternally divided. sceptical in character and so insistence that he is. 3. above all. 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. 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. 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. she for that doctrine in abstraction from the contexts of the works in each work squared found and. "Fame and Second Sailing. Nietzsche on clearly Truth Philosophy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Song. bumped into Zarathustra him: he simply Need. "Kant depths felt of to be a concealing surface adopted by the presentation of his thought. (b) proffering a morality while simultaneously demonstrating that the genuine life of philosophy is in the deepest tension with the moral law." also Dancing 4. 30. therefore. . 40. one can legitimately wishes to appear in the guise of a teacher and promoter of why it is that Nietzsche these doctrines. (Speech of 7 June. 36 and 87. In "On the Convalescent" Cf. Zarathustra Socrates' 3. comes closer to the truth in her treatment of Nietzsche's differing presentations of the thought of the eternal return (see Clark. namely. To every soul belongs another world. Unfortunately. 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. vertu' 20. This leads her to attribute to Nietzsche an attitude that cannot be they with his own definition. Robespierre." merely by looking into each other's faces. pp. a philosopher free of all attachment to moral asserts the cosmological and that philosophy is. Nietzsche himself ultimately will repudiate the doctrines of the to power and the eternal return. 152 and 192. 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.'' for every is an afterworld.The Will to Power Doctrine in Zarathustra 18. 283-85. 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." Having pears by chance. 29. 1794)": Daybreak. from the complex motion of the larger argument that in its entirety unfolds. 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. the Truthsayer proves to be very persistent in alone. Sunrise. 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. 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. If both Zarathustra and. "All Song. p. 27. despite his commitment to a particular set of moral values or convictions (see Clark. 289. bridge. the ill-constituted. Seth Benardete. 1990). and The Gay Science. 381) that is directed to (a) overtly appealing to while at the same time covertly undermining the dominant prejudices of his time." 54): Clark insists that Nietzsche recognition that there are no good arguments to support teaching of the will to it. 264). "Where chattering is there the community in speech and thought in the lies before me like a garden. 'de fonder sur la terre l'empire de la sagesse. Preface." and 22. She power. therefore.
. Indeed. $14. Politics. xii + 129 pp.95.95. Heidegger's Philosophy and Nazism (Berkeley: University of California Press. xii + 263 pp. Michael E. Heidegger's Confrontation ogy. $47. Vol. 1996). xi + 382 pp. University the Polity. Demythologizing Heidegger (Bloomington: Indiana University Press. 26." spawning stimulating new if not as actions least for his perhaps philosophical vision. xv + 232 pp.. xi + 234 pp.50 cloth. Tom Rockmore. 1990). $19. 1997).. Berel Lang. Fall 1998..95 paper.Review Essays Heidegger. NY: Cornell University Press. itics (Princeton: Princeton Timely Meditations: Martin Heidegger and Postmodern Pol University Press. 1995). $15. Heidegger's Silence (Ithaca. No. 1993).50 Hans Sluga. 1993).. x + 285 pp. and Nazism (Cambridge: Cambridge Uni versity Press. 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.50 paper.95 paper. even to the point of at "apologetics. $19. Yet these works reverse effect of interest in his for his philosophy. $15. Caputo.. Philosophy. Heidegger.95 paper. + 306 pp. greater notoriety. 1992). this century comes to a close.. $49. a wave of books have appeared which develop this theme. $33. Zimmerman. I develop to un- such an approach by examining a wide spectrum of which seek interpretation. Art (Bloomington: Indiana with Modernity: Technol xxvii University Press. In this essay. and National Socialism Frank Schalow of New Orleans John D. Heidegger's Crisis: Philosophy and Politics in Nazi Germany (Cambridge. 1 . $49. MA: Harvard University Press.50 cloth. 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. Since Victor Farias published his book detailing Heidegger's involvement in National Socialism (1987). Leslie Paul Thiele. Julian Young.
. that he exhibited antisemitic provides silence about the ual allegiance evaluate horrors of Auschwitz tendencies. we must consider those which explore the ten between his innovative development political views. Unlike Zimmerman. Caputo develops "deconamination structive" strategies as practiced by the luminaries of postmodernity. including Berel Lang's Heidegger's Silence. Farias' attempt ontology and his reactionary outstanding example. Although Farias champions this position. Among first the various books addressing Heideg Nazism politics. Rockmore implements criticism. the interconnection between Heidegger's concept of freedom and the example of his politics. implements his an "analytic" method to refute by point the damning evidence critics gather against him. along with the literature detail ing the atrocities of the Holocaust. of to Heidegger the intellectual-thinker darkest implications Not surprisingly. world comes a more recent example within the English-speaking and from Tom Rockmore's Heidegger's a method of Philosophy Hans Sluga Nazism. we can making inferences from Heidegger the man-politician and vice versa. that Heidegger recanted National Socialism its ideology. namely. When scholars analyze Heidegger's philosophy. that may be described This fact-gathering enterprise is crucial in order to embraced as "sociologicalsupport the con and never clusions. In the process. is . which also exemplifies historical. 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. several books paint the Heideggerian Among these books is Richard Wolin's The Politics of Being. however. From this a more radical spirit of an of criticism of Heidegger arises ex his presuppositions." in Heidegger's Crisis. Given this historical archaeology.122 Interpretation his fascist ties. As bridge between reject discover. We can appreciate a thinker's politics only even when by lary treatment of freedom. Wherever the terpret criticism of Heidegger becomes which most severe. attempts to rein vision his thought in such ways more compatible with our democratic become Julian inevitable. of One such is Michael Zimmerman's Heidegger's Confrontation "immanent" with Modernity. which follows on the heels of to re-examine Heidegger's involvement in National Socialism. the scope considering his or her corol of that freedom remains un clear. Lyotard. In order to discern this tendency. politics. I will point cover the truth about to a theme which remains dormant throughout the majority of those analyses.g. implicit evidence and that of his his contin to National ways of different Socialism. which is exemplified in John Caputo's Demythologizing Heidegger. of and Derrida. daeo-Christianity. they a conclusion often subordinate their explication of his concept of freedom to already the drawn about his politics. we will to expose Heidegger's thought to the criticisms of work those traditions which his brand excludes. we must examine different interpretive the polity ger's sion strategies which scholars employ to outline the place of in Heidegger's and thought. e. "Teutonic-Hellenism" including Ju- Levinas. for example.
and National Socialism also 123 Young's Heidegger. If the inquiry into being is to have its root in the historical situation of human beings. he this correlation may have been slow in ontological inquiry only by participat in being's disclosure.Heidegger. Being and Time (1927). 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. Given this reciprocity hypocritical to suggest that philoso phy of human can secure a action. 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. indeed. We Thiele's Timely Meditations. As Zimmerman. the Polity. hence. 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. then any such investigation must speak to those ethical dilemmas which distinguish perhaps the most turbu lent period in world history. Caputo. The thinker's commitment to authentic existence fosters the openness of philosophical appears between thought and existence. 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. of ethics and politics. inquiry. Philosophy. II. philosophy originates from the concrete situa ing tion in which the inquirer places him. however. already the publication of his magnum opus. raises. must help to shape the landscape of ontological inquiry.g. While in capturing the interest of many importance been etched in Heidegger's thought with its had scholars.or herself in question and owns up to his emphasizes that a thinker can engage or her unique existence as a finite it self. ethics. Nazism. he If concrete praxis orients the question of being. The Farias' effect of revelations. Even been prior to Farias' book. which shift in the emphasis on provides the climate Heidegger scholarship not only parallels for hearing the troubling allegations Farias' but. In this work. As poignant as revelations were. and Charles Scott began Heidegger's to recognize in the 1980's. sanctuary for truth apart from its exemplification in the realm As Herbert Marcuse argues in a famous letter to his teacher: . This work.. 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. thereby creating a buffer between the brilliance of his ontological insights and whatever myopia he may have shown in his political judgment. e. then practical concerns. 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.
pp. 84). The inquiry by he can address all of these configuration." nature. is of political which things. 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. but the of technology. of "enframing. let alone the turmoil of including develop a new politics Germany in the 1930's. technology in social organization in order that we can combat ger saw and this potential both Western capitalism and communism as for destruction. spearhead ing violence and mass destruction themselves. A philosopher can mistaken about politics then will openly admit his error. the which unique forgetting of being.124 '." the process of aspects of issues simultaneously and distinguish their As course. The audacity of the politi decision became the corollary to the philosopher's attempt at original thinking. Thus the question he asks is not simply whether his thinking became juxtaposed Heidegger had Nazi ties. and turned everything that ever was and truth into its opposite. us most basic global consideration of all remains the problem Because of its solicits from equally radical responses destructive power. One can debate the sociological factors ment which surround Heidegger's involve in National Socialism. As Zimmerman emphasizes. "Heidegger claimed that only authentic thinking and poetry could mons cians' human beings to face this save Germany in its hour of crisis. as the political movement which sum hence turned to National Socialism epochal challenge.. Yet could Heidegger verted went astray by underestimating how leaders be sub by the powers of technology they seek to harness. we cannot make the distinction between the he philosopher and the human be being be were Martin Heidegger it contradicts your own philosophy. i.' bloody In Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity. Michael Zimmerman and em braces this statement as the leitmotif for his discussion.' he did not mean rational calculation. That is. but instead the mode of comportment which opened one awesome and dreadful presencing (p. is "the question concerning all domination over exerts control and technology technology. On the surface." up to the its darkness and horror to face the crisis of not far fetched. but instead how with such a why what destructive ideology. xxiii-ix) Jews. By 'thinking. the our need to day.e. 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. granting humanity the power to impose its will on the diver sity of being's manifestation. Heideg instruments of technology. 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. Interpretation . . As Zimmerman states: . and the end of metaphysics.
According thing to accuse a to Zimmerman. harmony from strife. philosophy and politics. frenzy and violence. but instead blood and instinct. that is. Consider Heidegger's . elements of must Art becomes the vehicle incompatible harmony revered and strife. .Heidegger. Not surprisingly. translating that insight into guidelines of political arises to take On the other hand. recast Going forward. Once and destiny from destruc having understood tractive. Zimmerman pinpoints the dissonance between Heidegger's grasp of the Westem crisis and the prospect of action. (P. The self-mythifying Heidegger believed that he had been destined to proclaim the saving vision of his hero. p. 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. conflict and resolution. 127). tion can provide even the barest recipe for politics. But the question becomes whether the artist's way of begetting creativity from chaos. 84) In the end. Heidegger's hero sense of combines a nostalgia for the Greek origins with a grandiose "destiny" (Geschick) as reflected in Schelling's thought. Yet hubris and quite another to trace origin. For those who still espouse Heideg gerian at the themes. As reactionary modernists. Unfortunately. the Nazis united instinct with technology in a way which led to unparalleled devastation. his we must still ask where a rift emerges why Heidegger found National Socialism to be at these revelations leave us as scholars. the and National Socialism 'dark' 125 the Nazis meant by 'unrestrained' and was not the of being of entities. [emphasis on] the The grandson of the linking him with Holderlin. 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. On the one hand. a the greatest chal the lenge is to possibility Heidegger's thought through dialogue which examines of politics in the contemporary world. 132) The heroic leader must exhibit the creative power to transform tradition. what the Polity. man born in a manger in Holderlin's beloved Swabian countryside knew that he was destined to change the course of history! (P. a new opportunity Heidegger's short fall as an occasion to re-examine the perennial problem of the relation and between theory praxis. Holderlin. it becomes forefront of increasingly evident that the question of politics lies any future appropriation of his philosophy. and that he himself was thus the worldhistorical figure who would transform the 'destiny' fate of the West. to seek in the strife of the present the possibility of transmitting one's heri tage to future generations. . 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. domination humanity and nature. Sacrifice the rather than comfort provides key to motivate individuals to place their trust in a new political regime.
. e. Despite the deaf to the religious orientation of solicitousness about Heidegger's early thought. In a De- mythologizing which plays against Heidegger. "he the flesh in the biblical narratives (p. become 68). . Heidegger's turn to National Socialism thought. 207). 73). Caputo concurs teacher Karl Lowith. in his youthful "hermeneutics of he ethos which includes motifs from primordial Christianity. who rebuked for his "self-stylization into p. . 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. . the dissident (Derrida). truth. and heroism. 72). In his 'being' " advancing this criticism. Caputo. baffling silence about of the gas chambers real to modem agri pain these are all scandalously suffering" insensitive to 'factical' and concrete human (p. . a new voice of the persecuted "justice" (Lyotard). and temporality. Thus Caputo distinguishes the two dislocations in Heidegger's thought from which a new According commitment to topography of questioning can emerge. The first involves the emergence of the political question and the revelations of ment Heidegger's involve in National Socialism." which speaks contrast to the suffering "truth" of the of individual. the German seem people's Christian heritage does not deterrent in preventing the atrocities of National Socialism. we must cultivate a plu forum in which various criticisms of his philosophy: the need to heed the the and disenfranchised (Levinas). 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. charity. including care.126 Interpretation past Within the have decade. 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 must emerge "singular. (Lowith. there have been two major breakthroughs which dramatically changed the face of Heidegger studies. 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." community. and sayer of Heideggerian thought of this tendency does it purging to cultivate another ethos whose roots spring from the Judaeo- Christian heritage. all of which stem from Hellenic the Holocaust. To open Heidegger's thought to the ralistic "piety" traditions. love otherwise absent facticity. to the radically to the generic being's claim upon Dasein (p. self-affirmation. Only by possible a shepherd. Ironically. in his stark concept of Dasein. the categories of tenderness. thinker. According to Caputo. love. 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).g. As Caputo indicates. the scandalous comparison culture . "His parallels his to specific volitional categories of strength. The second pertains to the discovery of Heideg ger's thought uncovers an and in the early 1920's.
" maintains that the key motifs of "conscience. 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 schol exemplifies this critical does Sluga in Heidegger's Crisis. 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. Both in Heidegger's texts and more as ars proceed less as disciples in steeped histo "guilt" rians. Thus Rock philosophy" "resoluteness. and cial their strategy is to uncover unusual facts about Heidegger the person and then weave them together "innocence. maintaining the its contamination by his behavior from 1933 Interview" a narrower in 1966." Heidegger's philosophy (e.. despite a whatever personal shortcomings man.g. Philosophy. "What I call the 'official' view students. for Rockmore "hero. 74). he couches the Heideggerian problem of this polis in this which supposedly hold be National Socialism. there is no. In Heidegger. Rockmore. the self's exercise of resolve and sion of political decision and the of 1933. construes the term sense to mean the implementation of a kind of ideol rather ogy aligned with Heidegger's thought. namely. III. stance. 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. the Polity. these have is no bearing on our assessment of Heidegger may have exhibited as his thought. roughly speaking. link (p. Yet even given the plausibility of these connec tions. 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. than a reflection upon the princi ples of the polity." story" detective story assessing his As Rockmore states. as Nazism. however." more makes a stronger claim than most Nazism was based in his in suggesting that Heidegger's "turn to (p. propagated not view only by Heidegger but by some of his closest It is the between Heidegger's political" philosophical position and that. Because Rockmore way. the "destiny") are adaptable to Nazism and only Nazism. 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. This distinction becomes important. . National or no important.Heidegger. 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. 54). Socialism" Rockmore's overarching thesis is that Heidegger's thought is "intrinsically (p. being's transmis its destiny most to a chosen intellectual German people's emergence as a vanguard of world history. and that. 54).
gories of interpreted along these character that the depths of its cannot be fit into the cate Greek tragedy. philosophy While Zimmerman and Rockmore Germany show that as a catalyst of politi not develop a single in a political vacuum. never saw the persecution of the Jews as a philosophical problem say that in its own right. the Holocaust may be of such a singular darkness. 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. 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. unlike the nihilism Nietzsche envisioned. philosophy assumes such a leadership role as com pensation for a floundering economic and political life characterizing Germany . the professional and the thesis (p. there which are different interpretations But it is safe to of the degree to he Heidegger was or was not antisemitic. While the macrocosmic events of the Western crisis can be lines. 100-101). but the intellectual others. Berel Heidegger ignored the retrospect. the public and occasional" the private. Lang ger history (pp. 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. He emphasizes less the intricacies took in of Heidegger's thought philosophy does can the unique role which cal action. 5-8). freedom and necessity. Sluga illustrates how thought transform the fragmented tradition of the German Volk and its uncertain future into a vision of destiny. . What shared with only German intellectual to align with the dark it about not only Heidegger. stitutes plight of Lang points to a double fault by which the Jews during Hitler's uprising. The "tragic question then becomes. In Heidegger's Silence. Sluga tional more reconstructs the historical environment which precipitated the rise of Na and Socialism. In Heidegger's Crisis. insofar as the and then. in con again neglected the "Jewish question" Holocaust the most abominable maintains Rockmore. Of course. In this clear sense Lang's the is not altogether novel. 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 . Ironically. 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. 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.128 Interpretation to According dient Rockmore. 5). of illumination and blindness. Yet Heidegger of was not the was Nazism. but in thought" ignoring the "Jewish question" continues to "settle for limits to his forces life he (pp.
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. IV. Heidegger understood the not Greek polis as a site that combines the human concern for the good with an occasion to act." forged through the will. it is uncovers especially provocative to claim that polis: contrary to the his e. he nevertheless upheld Greek view of politics as involving the determination of the polis as a "site" (topos). 245-48). dient in In a According an overall where to Sluga. a process occurs. 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.Heidegger. action. And ger's while one may try vision. be translated into any specific may For example. a voluntaristic sense of prevails. setting institutions the decline. this sense of the polis formed one important ingre Gestalt of politics which are on took shape in National Socialism. 19). Indeed. To preserve the question of to extract totalitarian elements to from to be one of the greatest strengths of Sluga's careful analysis. the brand of Nazi politics to the Germans ultimately suc a While Heidegger may have embraced Nazi ideology. In outlining this Gestalt addressing to political. it is "political" not obvious fies as one of these of thinkers.g. but what extent a political crises of of the political. and National Socialism the 129 a condition of social instability. not Because fascism is so tenets Western democracy. Arendt that he quali Marcuse. 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.. it may be possible which conflict with the specific politics proves Heideg develop other inferences about the polity ideology of fascism. for most critics construe these . 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. There are many different philosophers to whom we might turn to provide insight into and the nature of the polis Plato and Hegel. community. in the 1930's. But despite Heidegger's Nazi ties. which philosophy prefigures cumbed. which unfolds within the historical compass of being's mani festation. 22). and the possibility of law. Sluga takes an thinker's thought arises through a important step in dialogue with the "reduced" his or her time. an opportunism "timely. Mill and Kant. "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. Given this philosophy politics the Polity. ontology some of the basic components integral to any freedom.
anyone sympathetic the lack of ethical content pinpoints in Heidegger's which Wolin a problem to the prospect of on developing experience. it would a type of action irrecon (p. 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). Ac singular character as to render cording to Wolin. action hostile to the standard" solution operates on a plane of generality. factic plane.. 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. Yet his opposed to the Fiihrerprinzip. Schurmann problem stands alone as a scholar who tackles a tenacious a solution. 35 ff. As our discussion of the previous . alien to all reduction to the uniform. however. The analogue abruptness Heidegger's political decision 1933 has its in his concept of most ob resoluteness (Entschlossenheit). Thus Wolin concept of resolve.g. Reiner Schurmann this problem by of explicating the insights suggesting that praxis constitutes the domain for Heidegger's thought. Heidegger believed that tological concepts must be developed out of the ontic stream of concrete. his commitment to National Socialism. We must recall that Schurmann Farias' published his book in French five former years before the gers ger's publication of book. 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. it holds only if we accept the deconstructive paradox that governance arises from overturning pre-existing models of political rule. Richard Wolin is hyperbolic Wolin prospect one such critic we must address before entertaining the of a "Heideggerian politics. offers steps toward Anarchic be praxis "will be di ametrically cilably 14)." paints a grim picture of what happens when a philosopher In The Politics of Being. vious. a Heideggerian politics must confront. in way thinking and be informed by action and not simply the other way around. While this most problematic. resolve is correlation a way of bringing oneself can develop those in concert with what the situation possibilities which speak demands. it is perhaps the is among the For Heidegger.). he Nazism nor an apologetic makes neither an encounter with Heideg for it primary. An "anarchic praxis" the forefront that of a new epochal relation between being thought. e. resolve is of such a indeterminate any prescription of the good within that decision (pp. in order that one to the dilemma in question. The indeterminacy port of Heidegger's concept of authentic selfhood implies that one could exhibit the steadfastness of resolve and yet do terrible things.130 Interpretation formal which concepts whose motifs as stances meaning can in Heidegger first articulated circum only be derived from the them. sup emphasizes the inhumane ideology of National Socialism. and while the addresses the dan involved in totalitarianism. In many respects.
38-41). Rockmore. Young a sudden and that Heidegger's turn to National Socialism adopted a almost far from momentous which decision. 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. 104). if it does their objections. Dallmayr's appeal to "letting be" holds promise as a either case a key for developing our political obligations toward others. 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. on the ensuing decade would produce more caustic criticisms of Heidegger's Nazi based extreme. 79). and National Socialism - 131 indicates. but Wolin. not answer Young all of makes a case against Heidegger's critics which. and Nazism Julian as well Young counters the criticisms of the scholars mentioned above. philosopher Young refutation claims proceeds of like "analytic" an to provide a point and Heidegger's opponents. Fred ger" Dallmayr crystallizes a perspective that there Along with is "another Heideg example beyond the Nazi ideologue. instead. 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. which claims In ogy. Young. On the first promoting selfhood as by failing front. books the Polity. Young appeals a sense of epitomized to provide grounds for its rejection" to Heidegger's concept of authentic which responsibility in totalitarianism. 125). provides According to Dallmayr. as those of a wide spectrum of European thinkers from Levinas to to Lyotard. In Heidegger. Against Rockmore was by point Wolin. 41). it tion and a allegiances than attempts at academics defending every a political his thought. Young argues that Heideg for the other. 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 maintains of not antisemitic rather exhibited concern toward many his Jewish students (pp. Heidegger had been percolating in Germany and for reactionary form of politics two decades (p. 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. Against that Heidegger was Hugo Ott. When joined Young's solicitude. By drawing upon Heidegger's eclectic interests an in Anaximander stood anew as a and Schelling. Heidegger's of injustice sights into the nature ironic way of re-examining his texts to discover in of justice. Lacoue-Labarthe Derrida. Farias. at least exposes some of their one-sidedness. is contrary to the demand toward conformity On the second front. Moreover. Heidegger logical categories such as "inferior" was skeptical of any attempt to apply bio "superior" "blood-line" to designate a people as or (p. But in further exploration of the parameters of human freedom may be . in regime.Heidegger. Philosophy. for his or ger's concept of solicitude promotes a concern her own integrity. 50).
198). language. Heideg is synonymous with freedom. may exhibit shortcomings in our system of know it.132 Interpretation in order to required rectify the Heideggerian Gelassenheit lacks As much as omission which Lang identifies. As Thiele emphasizes. Of in all the scholars who appropriate Heidegger's insights into politics a positive way. Heidegger develops understanding may freedom "letting be. Western democracy. 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. namely. in Such an approach refrained to articulate the democratic precepts we uphold. however. In this way a community develops. A still more unorthodox approach must motifs within a political context order transpose Heideggerian presumably to them. Leslie Paul Thiele follows this lead. In words. the nexus of politics. Free speech is asserts his her self-interest over against . 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. if government as fully we articulated. the key to devel oping a democracy lies in safeguarding maximum participation among its mem bers. "tolerance" namely. harbors a concession which most of Heidegger's critics have from making. language and dwell By tracing synergy Thiele develops a "postmodern Yet this perspective remains ing. 81-83). What Heidegger recognizes. namely.. 48-49). that is. Thiele locates this power of critical which fulcrum in for the way that ger exhibits the disclosive other truth. the between logos and community. Thiele raises the question which would losophy within a practical context. but calls each of us to submit to it as a place of dwelling. e. p. the a first inserts us into the speakers) space within of in way which gathers together each of us (as community (The Human Condition. the self's unique way of dwelling with others. then tional concepts ontology implemented in our democratic an original freedom" must be able to cast practices. As Arendt suggests.g. can also Heidegger's texts be directed against him. If an our democratic system on is its assumptions. of light the opera Thus. reorient phi speak In Timely Meditations. 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." rather abstract unless it can develop a critical edge to match liberal thinkers' criticism of Heidegger's language political views. including "right" as a constitutional resetting the parameters of free speech which we accept (pp. is that the power which permits political participation. simul taneously allows for the cultivation of individuality with a communal setting. Language is not simply an instrument of verbal expression. facets as as Thiele indi cates. although in a way which can assumptions about of to the naive contemporary democracy. that moral emphasis on can (pp. that democracy includes its own presupposi tions which. we this "disclosive evoke other of the liberties assume." Correlatively. they yield nuances to enhance our reflections on the polis.
it Sluga. . will which it cannot allow speech to become a self-indulgent expression of is rooted in concealment rather than unconcealment. inviting not contrariness is contrary response from the other. Literally. 16). thrives within a polis the greatest importance. and National Socialism 133 participate through which contrary voices can in serving the good of the community as a whole. Thiele shows how the spirit of dwelling in Heidegger's sense. philosophical inquiry is a "work of human (p. 167). another the Polity.Heidegger. censorship. 60-63). but rather is the "openness" beliefs. While philosophical inquiry depends upon Auseinandersetzung. . philosophy flourish only it is . but as also on the listener's duty to remain open and to. 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. p. 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. controversial. but like philosophical dialogue a greater master. in recalling Sluga's unclarified about ger construes reverse criticisms. While Yet. Through his predicated upon clever extrapolations. the interface between philosophy as the vanguard of Heideg in a philosophy democratic setting: the free exchange. 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. Auseinandersetzung Heidegger. there is a subtle enigma which remains and politics. the process of unconcealment freedom" itself. 5-12. Although in his as weak rectoral address can "academic freedom" spirited. While freedom "letting be" can admit beliefs may discord among its participants. The arbitrary. Heideg help of a Kantian framework merits serious consideration (Sherover. is a the voice of the other can resound only because there forum in reserved for it itself at within the polis. Thiele's attempt democracy as Charles Sherover does with the pp. politics. the ontological difference these opinions harbor" (p. (For discussion and its connection with the persecution of the Jews. But freedom takes shapes within a forum of exchange which safeguards the voice of the other. As Heidegger in the Basic Problems of Phenomenology. Heidegger take the argues that his exchange philosophers form of Auseinandersetzung to "set apart" (Vom Wesen. 86-100. democracy can be "Democracy is a to link journey toward freedom that remains ever under way. 292).) is iconoclastic. challenge" Disclosive freedom beckons to the democratic ger's thought with (p. 128). . even solicitous of. "The justly hal lowed right to free speech might be grounded not only in the speaker's preroga tive to utter opinions and person." 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. where freedom of speech assumes Heidegger discounts when Since by its nature the philosophical enterprise and even subversive. means or "place in on such opposition.
Mark. and Gunther Neske. Andre Michel. John.134 Interpretation to the challenge of freedom. Trans. . Blitz. but. Ed. Heidegger. Heidegger. New York: World Publishing. Bourdieu. Johannes. Heidegger's Ithaca: Cornell Being Possibility of Political Philosophy. Jean T. menschlichen Vom Wesen der Yale Freiheit. Ithaca. 15. London: Routledge. on the words responds to this contrary. 33. "On Heidegger's Lowith. CA: Stanford University Press. philosophy of its task. The Human Condition. Silence. 2. 1 (1991): 1-611. when such a pp. Heidegger Studies 5 (1989): 138-48. in which the fac- eloquently suggest. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Wilde William Kluback. Joseph Margolis Tom Rockmore. no." Graduate Faculty Philosophy Fritsche. and Farias. and 1995. George. Kovacs. reawakened challenge not by accepting the elitism Ironically.). University Press.' Assertion of the German University. Hannah. 1982. "A Philosophical Confrontation with the (1995): 191-204. will arrive sooner SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY Arendt. Perhaps this time think. Die Grundprobleme de Phanomenologie. 35)." Time Journal 14. Lisa Harries. 1998. GA 31. Emil. Graduate Faculty Philosophy Brainard. and What Is Philosophy? Trans.. 1975. politics would then a Heideggerian could become possible at which the time freedom be translated into "multivocality" facilitates than we dialogue among diverse traditions. is As Heidegger's so (What Is Philosophy?. Karl. Fred. "On Brinks and Bridges in Journal 18. "Truth and Power: Martin Heidegger. Trans. Victor. Peter Collier. 1991. "jews. 1990. New Haven: University Press. NY: Cornell David. Kettering. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press." Heidegger Studies 1 1 the Political Dystopias. Miguel. 'The Essence of and the SelfBailiff. Palo Alto. 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. no. Trans. de Beistegui. Political. no. Marcus (ed. Frankfurt am Main: Vittorio Klostermann. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. New York: Paragon Press. Trans. 1 (1995): 111-86. 1981. 1962. Dallmayr. GA 24. Heidegger the Trans. by re locating ticity itself within the polis and the tradition as a whole. 1958. 1958. Jean-Francois. Pascal. 1993. The Origins of Totalitarianism. The Other Heidegger. Phil Temple University Press. Martin Heidegger and European Nihilism. 1989. "Heidegger and the and and the Political. Martin. 1990. Truth. Pierre. Heidegger and University Press." Gary Steiner. In this spirit. Heidegger adelphia: and Nazism." Man and World 29 (1987): 327-34. Martin Heidegger and National Socialism. The Political Ontology of Martin Heidegger. " Lyotard. Richard Wolin.
24. Common Good. 4 (1997): 554-62. the Advantages and Disadvantages of Ethics and Politics. 4 (1989): 340-55. The New York Review of Books. C. 1994.Heidegger. Reiner. Charles. Van Buren. 1987.. no. Philadelphia: Temple University Press. Trans. "A Normal pp." 1996. The Politics of Being. Bloomington: Indi Wolin. and and Philosophical Forum 25. 1993." University of Chicago H. and Ethics Schalow. Frank. The ana Young Heidegger: University Press. Scott. Albany: SUNY Press. on Free Speech. 1. Heinrich Wiegand. Olson. Trans. New York: Columbia University Press. "Heidegger's Catholic 69. Parvis Emad and Dialogues with Martin Heidegger. 1992. Alan. 11-24. 1992). Roberts. "Heidegger 27-38. and the January 14. ed. Nazi." Scott. Dallery. by and Kenneth Maly. Thomas. "Revisiting Anarchy: Toward a Critical Appropriation of Schumann's Philosophy Today 41. Heidegger Jaspers. Richard. no. Hugo. no. Trans. and Danger. Atlantic High 1 (1993): 72-97. London: Fontana. 4 (1997): Concerning Heidegger's Involvement in National Journal of the British Society for Phenomenology. 2 (1993): 121-39. and National Socialism the 135 Milchman. Richardson. "Resoluteness Ambiguity. Thought. Christine-Marie Gros. 1998. Heidegger and lands. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. 1990. Quarterly Ott. Bloom University Press. Blunden. Heidegger on Being and Acting: From Principles to Anarchy. NJ: Humanities Press International. Socialism." American Catholic Philosophical Martin Heidegger: A Political Life. Zimmerman. "Heidegger's Truth eds. Martin Heidegger Between Good and Evil. Petzet. Sheehan. the Polity. Safranski. no. and Alan Rosenberg. Press. no. Intro. A. Michael E." Philosophical Writings. Chicago: Politics. Rumor of the Hidden King. Schurmann. Time. Ewald Osers. Riidiger. On ington: Indiana 30-35. no. "The Thorn in Heidegger's Side: The Question of National Philosophical Forum 20. Encounters Parvis Emad. Trans. and In A. William J. 1989. Albany: SUNY Press. Freedom. Alan M. Pp. eds. 1994. Origins. 2 (1995): 137-53. 1990. Sherover." Holocaust. 1996. Cambridge: Harvard University Press." ." "A Question Socialism. John. Charles E.
Rawls's Political Liberalism). and reflect their own philosophical historical development. Ballard Stephens College Conscience Francis Canavan.95. Vol. and whether it is transparent to itself about its exclusivity. $24. No. MD: Rowman & Littlefield. must and do include and exclude according to criteria which commitments. why it excludes. Like other pluralisms. 26. 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. each author also his of own alternative version of pluralism. On Toleration (New Haven: Yale xii 417 pp. Public $22.50. but what it excludes. Emeritus offers a Professor insightful Political Science of at Fordham University. 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.. Three recent works do both.. Francis Canavan. Democracy's Discontent: America in Search 1998.95. $16. University Press. possess. The Pluralist Game: Pluralism. 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. Democracy's Discontent: America in Search xi of + a Philosophy (Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Liberalism and (Lanham. While some liberals have become more conscious of the partic ularities and continue limits of their tradition (cf. Within sketches larger pictures the good society. Fall second book. versions of pluralism pretend to a Typical liberal fairness. Michael Walzer. xi + Michael the Moral 192 pp. 1997).Whose Pluralism? Bruce W. inclusiveness and neutrality liberal versions which they do not.. liberals have no rightly of called for their communitarian chal lengers to offer not only critique their but alternative scenarios. Thus the is not whether a particular intellectual tradition is exclusive. The Pluralist Game. 1995). Sandel. 1 . 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. indeed could not. + 126 pp. On the other hand. 1996). others with simply to assert liberalism as an overarching social framework little to supporting justification.
and the relations between economy and polity. In Canavan's account. Those who earlier championed pluralism did so against this biblically informed background. Law society. the Institute for Advanced work Study in Princeton. the background philosophizing which leads each author to his conclusions about the limits of pluralism varies in cogency and completeness. also subverted a consensus which Increased West secularization had circum scribed earlier American pluralism. but or not limited to. As Canavan clearly perceives. in Rawls in Political Liberalism. the dissolution of this unity "left millions of other . of Social theorist Michael Walzer. whether or not they were consciously aware of its func tion. Canavan cites a number of Supreme Court decisions last thirty years which support this contention. Naturally. on dimensions: authors' liberalism and how and why ing pluralism as it does. His identification and recovery of a republican strand in American history and politics recasts the question of pluralism discussion for public discussion. 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. 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. Since Walzer mented version of still supports an aug liberalism. pluralism and toleration. By seeking the lowest common denominator agreeable to the many and making law and policy accordingly. His an updated critique of of liberalism as a public philosophy. creates an environment on social in which everyone has to live. however conflictual. the the effects of recent Supreme secondary mediating institutions. it challenges to would be impossible to sion and cover these topics in this short space. lost unity of shared. and exerts a powerful influence has institutions" (p. Earlier American pluralism. the state "necessarily sets for a whole society. norms by privileging the autonomous individual. As might each approach ends up defining and limit be expected. ex policy unavoidably express Hence. surely ranks cluding the best among very contemporary treatments. the state in fact establishes secular individualism as ultimate. Court decisions on freedom of speech and reli gion. All three volumes survey a wide range of renewal of issues including. In Canavan's account. so I thematize the discus two main by focussing its pluralism.138 of a Interpretation Public Philosophy. and aspects of his version of pluralism are vulnerable to the critiques Sandel Canavan provide. indeed impossi ble. Statecraft is soulcraft whether it appreciates or wills this result or not. 76). attempts to put communitarian emphases to in support of a larger left liberalism in his On Toleration. The categories overlap. the purported neutrality and inclusiveness of the lib eral pluralist state in matters of religion and morality is bogus.
their best. These institutions. what shall be left to private choice and judgment is itself a political decision. hospi tals and social services were injured. Understood in individualist terms. pluralism being urged be cause ual it is a condition which supports so liberalism.Whose Pluralism? Americans 65-66). he does rejection of commend cooperatives in passing. what areas out of the political realm and as leaving them to individual But again. they have come to define the range of controversy between contemporary liberals and conservatives. Cultural liberalism is even determined by this pursuit that it can no longer judge identifies the the most outrageous wrongs. with -139 the feeling that they are now strangers in their land" own (pp. Canavan With Sandel and Walzer. such values quickly reduce to discussions of rights. The communitarian vision of pluralism supports also needs fur ther development of an appropriate range of economic arrangements congruent with that vision. The author very perceptively economic counterpart of ideal liberalism as capitalism and the free market. individ liberty. This reduction is itself the incessantly of a reiterated in the media and wider popular culture. had helped to flesh out religious community life. Again for lack commonly and acceptable moral or the tension between ments over liberty equality basis for resolving for specifying their content. Canavan particular. to public Canavan notes. 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. Yet of the three volumes. schools. but hostile toward conditions which make for thriving community. "celebrate" either argu rights We and are nevertheless "diversity. it displaced institutions. A main means by which liberal pluralism attempts neutrality is by taking controversial choice. liberalism. So liberal pluralism again turns out not to be neutral. 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. By increased federal private religious at the appropriation of taxes for public education. Sandel's alone offers a sustained . Certainly and American liberal pluralism is hardly neutral as capitalism any other model of economy. sustained analysis of the liberalism and capitalism would go a long way toward he affinity between completing Canavan's treatment. neutral and Apparently fail to democratic yet values such as liberty and equality also resolve pluralist conflict. Given his A would presumably reject capitalism as well. pluralism as a norm is the ultimate value of remain unresolvable." equally faced with ever-increasing calls to In Canavan's reading. but without developing the point at any length. It can only be made on the basis of an antecedent moral of judgment.
Genuine pluralism for Canavan qua is not primarily protection of the individual individual from group or state. 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. social services. tions to pass on are the essential and most defining role community. creating accords greater social space Of the three authors. On the other hand. but Canavan con "divisive" religious) as by urging orthodox Catholics (Canavan is Catholic). One can but be reminded here of other forms of scepticism. even more desperate for pluralist For the liberal pluralist claiming full equally and neutral inclusiveness has to or groups which admit. to make room for such groups in education. the state should reduce its direct etc. 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. morality so central volume is a set of papers rather than a systematic a problem poses a different kind of limitation. on pain of contradiction. That current liberal pluralism is in fact quite intolerant of strongly committed positions (particularly again underlines its own very inconsistent nonneutrality. If anything. public policy his critics have to argue why their moral as But to take precedence over the biblical tradition of to American cultural formation. to join in the struggle. Groups with spiritual. 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. we might have expected a note of despair in Canavan's conclusion. those outside the wider biblical tradition Canavan com mends will likely reject his pluralism. Canavan nities "secondary" or the greatest primacy. cultural. Thus the not pluralist must also celebrate not celebrating pluralism. 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. to flourish. conservatism (economic libertarian the biblical religion congruent with Canavan Taken to its logical terminus. The fact that Canavan's treatment of needs supplementation often provides. but a situation in which individuals Here as members of various communities can who provides pursue essential human goods. Protestants and devout Jews. mon gious to help stem the tide toward secular monism and by a com reli biblically based morality institutional life.. and mediating commu intellectual tradi not the state. so vision ought Canavan argues. both cludes with conservative intellectually reasserting for private and legislatively.140 Interpretation of the relationship between economy and community flourishing. 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. always reflects some moral vision. Given his very critical assessment of the recent drift of affairs.
with others about what is true any or good. or even citizen obligation. Consequently. the freedom tive. Ancient also had aspired to cultivate virtue goal of been longstanding in its citizens. we no choose its Choice longer of one's respect ends becomes views a kind of end in itself. They natu common affairs. Sandel raises the crucial why we should suspend such identity-making aspects of our selves . and a notion of ends all capacity block the way. ing of Again. for Sandel and the republican tradition. explicit or use in by deliberating but simply for the fact that sovereign individuals As Sandel notes. this asocial render human good is misleading. As in Liberalism and the Limits of Justice. Ac else a pure individual whose highest own ends. since these all require description of the self. popular psychology manuals make this promoting a virtual religion of the self in which there is no incentive on their content. 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. the self is value resides in its capacity to by contemporary liberal theory. is seen primarily as nega They need protection from the state and each other in order to pursue their private ends. Through detailed historical account of American public life from the foun ders to the contemporary scene. People are born for citizenship. cannot everyday do justice to the moral experience. Sandel recovers an alternative and republican way of genuine self-government from which liberalism can be seen as a de cline. community. both conceptually a freedom as the of the individual self to choose its own and practically. of citizens In the liberal conception. others' based have chosen them. 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. and this goal has American public policy. as Sandel documents Failure through numerous primary sources. the politics a neutral ideal of liberalism is not timelessly natural. to a solution to these problems. motivation for the mutual respect liberalism calls for is also undermined. religious duties. even are deprived this sort of active community participa whatever elites their negative freedom is at the mercy of and participation do govern.Whose Pluralism? 141 family. rights apart to moral and religious views of from the good. As Sandel notes. Liberal ideals of neutrality citizens. for instance. Kantian versions obliga phenomena of family tions. Sandel emphasizes the mislead ing and alienating idea of the self offered above all cording to that theory. But the self conceived as unencumbered by prior moral definition is an abstraction which of is falsified by liberalism. As identification more alien in the whole decline and citizens become to each other. When they tion. 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. with regard and national and collective control over life is unraveling and fear about lost individual life-goveming forces.
beginning would "bracketed" at conception and their view to accept they in effect advocates are also to "bracket" be countenancing murder." up ing what he terms a "mutual appreciation goods which would affirm peo ple and communities for the distinctive or other. But even if we substi views need tuted some other version of the relativist claim. prochoice their views for public purposes. So Sandel pluralism.142 when Interpretation it comes to questions of cooperation justice. and religious leads him to reject forms of pluralism primarily based upon. not we should bracket depends on which relativism is no help either. judg Using the legal example of abortion. seeing as one nonprivileged attitude and why would among other possibilities. regarding toleration. then there is for are others' at least one truth which is not relative. 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. thickly commitments unabashedly by family relations. telling on the of the parallel argument against moral bracketing from Lincoln Douglas heart issue of slavery. rightly observing respect that a practical interest in social and mutual does not automatically defeat any that "We cannot without other moral interest. His him to morally advocat seriousness about ethical rationality and truth allows and transparent public policy deliberation decision. and promoting. In principle. and His alternative version the self. Sandel advocate ends willingness to curb the pseudopluralism of hegemonic business interests. As Sandel correctly argues. The argument for liberalism from is self-defeating. 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. moral. 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. We might just as well say that all views equally worthy of disrespect it How since none is true. 20). Sandel observes that if the Catholics were correct about human life abortion. respect not follow. a contradiction. but legal abor Sandel cites a provocative and against tion in effect simply grants their position. virtueless abstract vorce and individualism. In both cases. Or we could relativize the value of respect. community. question of what of By raising the economy best serve republi shows a can aims of self-government and the virtues which support it. not their simple capacity to choose something . they express. Suspending moral name of toleration does not effect a neutral pluralism. 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.
90). To with a return Sandel's abortion example. 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. in general. program and its associated pluralism make for tall Sandel himself chapter. Sandel is arguing account of moral content that public deliberation can and should take permits are before marching handed out. 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. 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. while Martin Luther King sought civil rights for blacks. Sandel replies. 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. 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. Yet he had acknowledged and of highlighted the importance of ethical rejects truth when it came to the content-neutrality position expression.Whose Pluralism? 143 a Altogether. That is. raises and responds to a number of relevant objections questions are possible. To the liberal objection that if the bracketing. With Sandel. in the nature of (p. Yet the decisions a deliberation questions can be philosophically shallow. be Canavan suggests. Sandel may depend more on an substantive positions on fam American consensus of biblical morality recognizes. The difference the cause" consists in the content of the speech. or even malicious. and which community which realizes the very cor is convinced of the truth of its "common" beliefs with practices. "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. Walzer of toleration and coexistence. Sandel rationality of recent Supreme Court decisions on free an ordinance could ban the Nazis from marching in Skokie. the same could be said about his ily law. notes the insufficiency of appeals problems to rights and abstractly fair procedures alone to address contemporary These problems vary depending upon the histori- . Sandel's order. Arguably. Presumably. Indeed. 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 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. be added Sandel the offers about civil here that. "narrow" in his final further But further rejects the In the arguments Sandel moralism of his closing the fundamentalist without course of qualification.
70). as an harbor republican hopes. and social Where then. "one hopes that they are justified schools will have exactly the effects that orthodox make their children . is right say) tradition. He doubts that liberal politics be sustained were all children to go into private sectarian schools. together with leaves intact the current crisis. With both Sandel revival of various and Canavan. Religious parties. Canavan. but is unwilling to them of taxation fear" relieve would for state education. (It would be intriguing to see a published debate between Sandel and Walzer over this question. With Sandel. 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. attempts While Walzer everyone's rejects by groups with moral to "control behavior of in the name of a supposedly common (Judeo-Christian. 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. . Walzer largely responds by simply asserting his own secu lar liberal dogmatism. and 'family values' or of their own certainties about what (p. Walzer acknowledges that liberalism is a substantive and par its own.144 Interpretation societies. life are we of to uncover the resources necessary for a revived political the sort Walzer wants. for example. ought to be barred from running in elections." wrong" of orthodox parents that ant of religious and that parents send the public "toler may Walzer responds that. Walzer is willing for these orthodox parents to their children to private schools (if they can afford it). Yet by keeping to the larger liberal pluralist picture. common roots of alienation and claim that its strong individualism. (p. of and others. 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. this is an omission which pluralism. To his credit. Maclntyre. with early roots in Protestant and English history. To the fears state-mandated versions of tolerance education error. Walzer here in the secondary associations. so Walzer develops a suggestive regimes cal and political situation of various and useful typology of five tolerance analysis historical examples.) Nor can we repair to . so he opposes a voucher system. so the unity which comes from that richer foundation for citizenship is unavailable to us. 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). . since we are too multi United States In his typology of toleration regimes. Naturally. Yet his recognition that liberalism is one tradition among others does not lead Walzer to offer a philosophical defense of it. Walzer identifies the immigrant society rather than a nation-state with republican foundations like France. In the face of contempo ticular political culture of rary critiques like those of Sandel. of a pluralism which isn't simply cannot fragmentation? We farious a population. according to Walzer.
But reading Sandel. Altogether then. rationality in about we do not and after seriously engage questions of truth and we ethics. since that would Within the cannot confines of the position Walzer embraces. . 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.Whose Pluralism? what remains "intolerant. have less to assert reason than ever to relinquish that good." - 145 be of a biblically informed liberal moral consensus.
in the original languages (German English). Contains the critical editions of Religionskritik Spinozas (1930). DM 90 Die Zur - (subscription price: DM 78. previously unknown writings and letters. DM 90 critical editions of (subscription: DM 78. 1921 to Contains the 29 et essays from the years 1937.. Cohens Wissenschaft Spinozas Das (1924). . XXXIV. The from Strauss's personal copies of these writings are published here for the first time. marginalia from Strauss's personal copies of these writings are published here for the first time. French. The Religiose Lage der Gegenwart (1932). XIV. 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. Schriften 1936 Konspektivismus and more. Der Erinnerung an Lessing (1937). Testament Spinozas (1932). remarques sur nach la science politique de Mai'monide de Farabi Maimunis (1937). (1921). Erkenntnisproblem in der philosophischen Lehre Fr. more than a quarter of which Quelques are published here for the first 0n time: Philosophie und Gesetz Der (1935). H. politische other Volume 3: Hobbes' Wissenschaft und zugehorige - Briefe politische Contains. 1933-1935). 434 pp.-). und Volume 2: Philosophie 1997. and Lowith. Gerhard Kriiger. It study of Strauss's philosophy in the future. numerous previously Karl unknown letters from his philosophical correspondence with Klein. cloth with dust jacket. Tendency Eine Ort der Vorsehungslehre and der Ansicht Das Political Teaching (1937). Volume 1: Die Religionskritik Spinozas 1996. be indispensable for all serious und zugehorige Schriften Analyse der Bibel- dust jacket. B. among Wissenschaft writings. and others published here for the first time. Jacob In addition. Bibelwissenschaft Spinozas marginalia und seiner Vorlaufer (1926).-). Jacobis (1929). Abravanel's Philosophical (1936).i VERLAG J. Gershom Scholem. 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.. Gesetz - Friihe Schriften - 635 pp. cloth with English) many important.
(approx. ? Volume 2: DM ? Heinrich Meier: Die Denkbewegung von Leo Strauss: DM 16. $5300). subscribe by your university 1. 66 pp. Address Phone/Fax VerlagJ.00). $53. published here for the first time in its entirety in this form. Volume 6: Gedanken Uber Machiavelli Each volume contains a foreword by the editor of the Gesammelte composition of each Schriften which introduces the reader to the circumstances surrounding the text as well as its central concerns.metzler. $46. edition are approx. current list price. The prices of the 2.B..Volume 4: Politische Philosophie Contains the first publication with various - Studien zum theologisch-politischen Problem of the essay The Living Issues of German Post-War Philosophy along German translations. . Each volume may be purchased separately. ? I would like to order the following volumes U Volume 1: DM 9090- at the individual prices: (approx. Metzler Postbox 10 32 41 D-70028 Stuttgart Fax +49711/2194-249 Internet: http://www. volumes should (approx.00 each). The appendix the most comprehensive bibliography yet to be presented of Strauss's writings. DM 16. the be sent as they appear. The prices for subscribers to the entire 15% less than the volumes. your order with your purchased Please use this ad or a copy of it when placing book dealer or when or college recommending that the books be library. ? I would like to to the entire edition of the Leo should Strauss. Choosing the subscription price obliges one to purchase all six Subscribers receive the following at no extra charge: Heinrich Meier Die Denkbewegung von Leo Strauss und Die Geschichte der Philosophie die Intention des Philosophen with 1996. $10.00). Name .de . The essay is the result of a long and intensive involvement contains Strauss's philosophy.80 (approx. Volumes 1 and 2 be sent immediately along with Die Denkbewegung von 2 is DM 78- Leo Strauss. Dept.80 (ISBN 3-476-01504-1). Volume 5: Uber Tyrannis Contains the German translation along with the correspondence between Leo Strauss and Alexandre Kojeve (1932-1965) in the original languages (German and English). The price of volumes 1 subsequent volumes has yet to be determined. Gesammelte Schriften and in sechs Banden at the reduced subsequent price.
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Y. -a o PC fo a -a o CO 2 o 3 "I 3 o 3 O < CO a r 21 rra *> o m c3 CO .S. Queens College Rushing N. 11367-1597 U. Inc.A.ISSN 0020-9635 Interpretation.
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