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Chapter Summary

This front matter section of the book The Classic Jewish Philosophers: From Saadia Through the Renaissance contains the table of contents, acknowledgements, translator's preface, and an introduction. The book discusses the central themes of the philosophical approaches of Saadia, Ibn Gabirol, Halevi, Maimonides, Gersonides, Crescas, and the other thinkers. It talks about nationalists including Abraham Bar Ḥiyya and Judah Halevi, who privilege the moment of direct encounter between the worshipper and God over philosophical cogitation, and situate it in a universal historical drama in which the Jewish people are seen to play a unique, central role. The book explains philosophical thoughts of these thinkers in the context of the historical challenges and religious concerns of their age. It also analyzes beginnings of Italian Jewish thought and influence of the Renaissance in Italy.

Keywords: Classic Jewish philosophy; Ibn Gabirol; Italian Jewish thought; Judah Halevi; Renaissance; Saadia Gaon

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