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Grant number like: FT-56091-08

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Jonathan A. Jacobs
Colgate University (Hamilton, NY 13346-1386)

Summer Stipends
Research Programs

$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2008 – 8/31/2008

Law, Reason, and Morality in Medieval Jewish Thought

This book will be a study of medieval Jewish thought concerning the topics indicated in the title. I will explore the ways in which Jewish thinkers explicated ethical thought, given the Jewish intellectual tradition and Jewish law on the one hand, and Greek, Hellenistic, and the medieval philosophical and theological thought, on the other. The project will show how there is a distinct conception of the rationality of moral requirements in Jewish thought, and how it differs from theories of natural law and from conceptions of practical wisdom (as found, for example, in Aristotelian and Platonic thought). The discussion and analysis will connect numerous themes and issues in philosophy, religion, moral theorizing, and intellectual history in a way that has not yet been elaborated. It will do so in a way that includes historical study while also highlighting the relevance of the issues to important contemporary debates concerning religious thought and moral theorizing.