Dana Hollander, McMaster University


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My primary research areas are Modern Jewish Thought, 20th-century French and German Philosophy (especially the phenomenological tradition), and German-Jewish History and Culture.

I have further research interests in conceptions of religion and secularity in democratic legal cultures, and in theoretical work on questions of identity and difference as they pertain to race, religion, gender and sexuality, and Jewishness.

My book Exemplarity and Chosenness is a combined study of Jacques Derrida's philosophy from his earliest writings on Husserl to his considerations of "philosophical nationality" during the 1980s to his later writings on ethico-politico-religious themes, and of Franz Rosenzweig's philosophy of Judaism, especially his theory of election and messianism.

My second monograph Ethics Out of Law: Hermann Cohen and the "Neighbor", will appear shortly. It is the culmination of a research project on the German-Jewish Neo-Kantian philosopher Hermann Cohen (1842-1918), whose writings on Judaism set the course for much of modern Jewish philosophy in the 20th century. The book presents Cohen's philosophical approach to the figure of "the neighbor" and the biblical precept to "love your neighbor" as a pivotal element between his systematic philosophy of ethics and law and his Jewish thought.

My graduate courses are designed to introduce students to core figures in continental philosophy and religious thought, and in modern Jewish thought, including Mendelssohn, Husserl, Heidegger, Cohen, Rosenzweig, Levinas, and Derrida, and their receptions. (See my Teaching page for current and past syllabi.)

last updated June 7, 2021