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Jewish Theology and World Religions$
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Alon Goshen-Gottstein and Eugene Korn

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9781906764098

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781906764098.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 05 August 2021

The Banished Brother

The Banished Brother

Islam in Jewish Thought and Faith

(p.235) Ten The Banished Brother
Jewish Theology and World Religions

Paul B. Fenton

Liverpool University Press

This chapter studies the cultural encounter between Israel and Ishmael, how it has played a powerful role in shaping Judaism, and how it led the medieval rabbis and Jewish thinkers to oscillate between rejection and reception of Islam. Much of this dialectical attitude is played out through the ambivalent interpretations of the biblical Ishmael and in the polemical histories of Jews and Muslims. The chapter shows the Islamic impact on Judaism in halakhic, kabbalistic, messianic, and even hasidic texts. It is pessimistic about the enduring value of the Jewish–Muslim heritage, in view of how contemporary political circumstances have redefined Jewish–Muslim relations. Nevertheless, theological advances by Jews and Muslims are both necessary and possible. Through a process of inversion (teshuvah) of previous interpretative models regarding each other, Jews and Muslims can pave the way to mutual recognition and acceptance on theological and political levels.

Keywords:   Israel, Ishmael, Judaism, Islam, Jews, Muslims, Jewish–Muslim heritage, Jewish–Muslim relations, teshuvah

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