Florida State University
Ruth Meltzer Fellowship

Research Topic

A Jewish Bacchanalian Revel: The Place of G.W.F. Hegel in Jewish Philosophy


Martin Kavka is Professor of Religion at Florida State University. His primary research interest is the discourse of modern Jewish philosophy. His first book, Jewish Messianism and the History of Philosophy (2004), argued that a significant strand of thinkers in the modern Jewish philosophical canon—Hermann Cohen, Franz Rosenzweig, and Emmanuel Levinas, with some premonitions in the writings of Moses Maimonides—grounded their defense of Jewish messianism in a philosophical account of the nature of nonbeing and potentiality. It received the inaugural Jordan Schnitzer Book Award in Philosophy and Jewish Thought from the Association of Jewish Studies in 2008, awarded to outstanding scholarship in that subfield published between 2004 and 2008. He has also edited three books; a fourth edited volume is forthcoming. Most recently, in April 2012, Cambridge University Press published The Cambridge History of Jewish Philosophy: The Modern Era (co-edited with Zachary Braiterman and David Novak), which is the most substantial multi-author volume to take a thematic approach to the field.



Exploring aspects of internal life that lie beyond reason—emotions and feelings, the unconscious, sensation, imagination, impulse, intuition, and the nonrational dimensions of reason itself.