Emmanuel Levinas: His Life and LegacySalomon Malka | Translated by Michael Kigel and Sonja M. Embree $25.00
Published in 2006 | 300 pages | paper | ISBN: 978-0-8207-0358-9
“This book offers a rich sense of Levinas as a person, and is valuable for elucidating the Jewish context and content of his thought. . . . This is the best biography of Levinas available.” — Choice
“In Salomon Malka's masterful new biography of Levinas, the first in English for this most unique and challenging thinker, we are provided glimpses of the master through elegantly constructed fragments and miniatures detailing the facts of his life and the profound effect that he had on others. . . . In the course of these enlightening portraits from those who best knew him we learn how to better read Levinas as the details that are unearthed serve to unfold the many hermetic passages in Levinas' books.” — Tikkun Magazine
“English-language readers owe a debt of gratitude to Michael Kigel and Sonja M. Embree for translating Malka's French text (Emmanuel Levinas: La vie et la trace, 2002) into a very clear English. . . . This biography exceeds its expectations in successfully narrating a story about Emmanual Levinas the family man, the rigorous scholar, the passionate teacher, the Jew.” — Shofar "
Emmanuel Levinas, one of the twentieth century's most eminent ethical philosophers and religious thinkers, introduced to French philosophy the idea of the other as the rupture of the same, the idea that was to become the foundation of late twentieth century continental thought. Originally published in French, Emmanuel Levinas: His Life and Legacy provides the only in-depth biography to appear in English of this interesting thinker, whose influence has continued to grow since his death in 1995. Salomon Malka, a journalist and student of Levinas's for three decades, devoted five years to the researching and writing of this biography, which details Levinas's childhood in Lithuania, his prewar years in Paris, his studies with Edmund Husserl and Martin Heidegger, his years as a German prisoner of war during the Holocaust, his paneling at the Vatican and in the streets of Tel Aviv, and his teaching career at the École Normale Israélite Orientale and the Sorbonne in Paris. This informative biography follows the ascent of Emmanuel Levinas from solitary thinker to one who is universally influential, and includes personal accounts of his family, friends, colleagues and students. It is essential reading for all those interested in Levinas and his thought, but also for anyone who wishes to better understand contemporary continental thought and its foundations and implications.
SALOMON MALKA is a writer and journalist. He is editorial director for the French radio station RCJ (La Radio de la Communauté) and is a regular contributor to the Jewish monthly l'Arche. He is also the author of Lire Lévinas (1989) and Jésus rendu aux siens (2000).