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Chapter Summary

This present study will focus upon eight significant fifteenth century thinkers who discussed the idea of metempsychosis from within Jewish and humanist contexts. The first two scholars to be treated, Rabbi Michael ha-Cohen Balbo and Rabbi Moshe ha-Cohen Ashkenazi. The lengthy proceedings of the debate will be analyzed in the first chapter of this book. The second chapter will discuss literature by the two interlocutors that is not in the notebooks of the debate itself but that further deals with philosophical, kabbalistic, and legalistic questions related to the belief in metempsychosis. Chapter three will examine this dual character of philosophy and mysticism in Abarbanel's writings. Chapter four examines this dialectic within Hayyat's thought and its rhetorical implications. Chapter five of this book traces these variant lines of development as perceived within the thought of Genazzano. The final chapter fleshes out this unique synthesis of Jewish sources and the philosophical neutralization.

Keywords: Abarbanel's writings; Genazzano; Hayyat; humanist contexts; Jewish contexts; metempsychosis; Rabbi Michael ha-Cohen Balbo; Rabbi Moshe ha-Cohen Ashkenazi



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