Michael Morgan (Toronto): "Tears the Civil Servant Cannot See: Levinas, Zionism, and the Ethical Critique of Politics"

Department: Jewish Studies

Date and Time: April 26, 2017 | 5:00 PM-6:30 PM

Event Location: HIB 135

Event Details

The UCI Program in Jewish Studies and the UCI Department of Political Science present:

Michael Morgan (Indiana University/University of Toronto)

Tears the Civil Servant Cannot See
Levinas, Zionism, and the Ethical Critique of Politics

Wednesday, April 26, 2017 at 5pm
Humanities Instructional Building (HIB) 135

In his recent book Levinas’s Ethical Politics, the prominent philosopher Michael Morgan develops a reading of Emmanuel Levinas’s views about ethics and politics and applies that reading to what he has to say about Zionism. In this talk, he sketches how ethics and politics are interrelated in Levinas’s thinking, clarifies how he takes ethics to provide an orientation for a critique of social and political institutions, and shows how his reading helps to make sense of Levinas’s many comments on Zionism and the State of Israel.

Michael Morgan is the Chancellor’s Professor Emeritus of Philosophy and Jewish Studies at Indiana University and the Grafstein Chair in Jewish Philosophy at the University of Toronto. He is a historian of philosophy whose research has ranged from Ancient Greek Philosophy to philosophy, religious thought, and political theory in the twentieth century. He has published widely in modern Jewish philosophy, from Spinoza and Mendelssohn to Buber and Rosenzweig, and he has worked widely on intellectual responses to the Nazi Holocaust and contemporary Jewish philosophy. His book Discovering Levinas, which places the work of Emmanuel Levinas within the philosophical world of Anglo-American philosophy, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2007. He is the co-editor, with Peter Eli Gordon, of the Cambridge Companion to Modern Jewish Philosophy (2007).