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Elliot Wolfson: “Anxiety, Lament, and the Language of Silence: Poetic Redemption and Gnostic Alienation”

A lecture as part of the Greenberg Distinguished Scholar Program for fall of 2017: All Religion Is Inter-Religion: A Celebration of Steven M. Wasserstrom’s Contributions to the Study of Religion on His 30th Anniversary at Reed College

Elliot Wolfson of the University of California at Santa Barbara will explore the affinity between what Heidegger articulated as the mood of anxiety with which one is overcome when mutely confronting the nothing of being and what Scholem—perhaps influenced by Benjamin’s reflections on the nexus of language and lament—argued in the youthful cogitation “On Lament and Lamentation,” composed in 1917, with respect to the unique status of lamentation. 

Established on the occasion of Reed's centennial with a gift from Dan Greenberg and his wife and philanthropic partner Susan Steinhauser, the Greenberg Distinguished Scholar Program aims to bring visiting scholars to campus to stimulate and support the work of students and provide faculty with the opportunity for in-depth intellectual exchange with a prominent member in their field.

Steven M. Wasserstrom is Moe and Izetta Tonkon Professor of Judaic Studies & Humanities at Reed College and has been an influential figure in religious studies. His first book, Between Muslim and Jew: The Problem of Symbiosis under Early Islam (Princeton University Press), received the American Academy of Religion’s best book award in the area of Historical Studies in 1996 and has been recently reissued in Princeton University Press's Legacy Series. His second book, Religion after Religion: Gershom Scholem, Mircea Eliade, and Henry Corbin at Eranos (Princeton University Press), has been recognized as a “contemporary classic” in the field.




Saturday, October 28, 2017 at 4:30pm

Vollum College Center, Vollum lecture hall
3203 Southeast Woodstock Boulevard, Portland, Oregon 97202-8199

Event Type



Faculty, Students, Alumni, Open to the Public






Greenberg Distinguished Scholar Series
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