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Place in Modern Jewish Culture and Society$
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Richard I. Cohen

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190912628

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190912628.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 20 October 2021

Imagining a Homeland: The Election of Place and Time

Imagining a Homeland: The Election of Place and Time

(p.113) Imagining a Homeland: The Election of Place and Time
Place in Modern Jewish Culture and Society

Asher D. Biemann

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the notion of an imagined homeland and how it requires the election of a place defined by other spaces as well as the election of a time that will always be not-yet, an anticipatory home, a place desired and thus, as Emmanuel Levinas put it, “a future never future enough.” It first considers strangeness as the basic word, the Urwort, of history and homecoming, taking into account the views of Jacob Taubes. It then explores how imagination assumes a place and what it means to return before proceeding with a discussion of placelessness, spiritual homelands, and the paradox of elective affinities. It suggests that imagining a homeland cannot be conceived outside the works of love, nor without desire as a force of self-othering, that imagination affirms the freedom of election, and that election also needs the freedom of imagination.

Keywords:   Homeland, election, place, time, strangeness, homecoming, Jacob Taubes, imagination, placelessness, elective affinities

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