The Cambridge Companion to Leo Strauss

Overview

Each volume of this series of companions to major philosophers and philosophies contains specially commissioned essays by an international team of scholars, together with a substantial bibliography, and will serve as a reference work for students and nonspecialists. One aim of the series is to dispel the intimidation such readers feel when faced with the work of a difficult and challenging subject.

Leo Strauss was a central figure in the twentieth-century renaissance of ...

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The Cambridge Companion to Leo Strauss

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Overview

Each volume of this series of companions to major philosophers and philosophies contains specially commissioned essays by an international team of scholars, together with a substantial bibliography, and will serve as a reference work for students and nonspecialists. One aim of the series is to dispel the intimidation such readers feel when faced with the work of a difficult and challenging subject.

Leo Strauss was a central figure in the twentieth-century renaissance of political philosophy. The essays of The Cambridge Companion to Leo Strauss provide a comprehensive and nonpartisan survey of the major themes and problems that animated Strauss's work. These include his revival of the great "quarrel between the ancients and the moderns," his examination of the tension between Jerusalem and Athens, and, most controversially, his recovery of the tradition of esoteric writing. The volume also examines Strauss's complex relation to a range of contemporary political movements and thinkers, including Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger, Max Weber, Carl Schmitt, and Gershom Scholem, as well as the creation of a distinctive school of "Straussian" political philosophy.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This collection of essays is learned, well argued, intelligent, and written by fine scholars from departments of philosophy and political science who are clearly independent thinkers...For those who are interested in Strauss's critique of modernity, or the nature of his debt to Heidegger, or his Spinozistic tendencies, this volume offers a very good place to start, especially for insiders."
Perspectives on Politics, John R. Wallach, Hunter College and The Graduate Center, CUNY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521703994
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 5/11/2009
  • Series: Cambridge Companions to Philosophy Series
  • Pages: 324
  • Sales rank: 1,421,895
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Steven B. Smith, the Alfred Cowles Professor of Political Science at Yale University, is the author of Reading Leo Strauss, Spinoza's Book of Life, and Spinoza, Liberalism, and Jewish Identity. His publications have appeared most recently in Hebraic Political Studies, Review of Politics, and Political Theory, and he has lectured throughout the United States, Europe, and Israel. Professor Smith has held the position of Master of Branford College at Yale since 1996.
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Table of Contents

Contributors xi

Abbreviations xiii

1 Introduction: Leo Strauss Today Steven B. Smith 1

2 Leo Strauss: The Outlines of a Life Steven B. Smith 13

3 Leo Strauss and the "Theologico-Political Predicament" Leora Batnitzky 41

4 Strauss's Recovery of Esotericism Laurence Lampert 63

5 Strauss's Return to Premodern Thought Catherine Zuckert 93

6 Leo Strauss and the Problem of the Modern Stanley Rosen 119

7 The Medieval Arabic Enlightenment Joel L. Kraemer 137

8 "To Spare the Vanquished and Crush the Arrogant": Leo Strauss's Lecture on "German Nihilism" Susan Shell 171

9 Leo Strauss's Qualified Embrace of Liberal Democracy William A. Galston 193

10 Strauss and Social Science Nasser Behnegar 215

11 The Complementarity of Political Philosophy and Liberal Education in the Thought of Leo Strauss Timothy Fuller 241

12 Straussians Michael Zuckert 263

Select Bibliography 287

Index 293

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