For Strauss, Jerusalem and Athens are the two roots of Western civilization, with Jerusalem representing biblical revelation and Athens representing philosophy. Their relationship is one of "fundamental opposition," an opposition that constitutes the vitality of western civilization. In Strauss's reading, to choose between Jerusalem and Athens is to choose between "life in obedience to divine law or life in freedom." Girard, too, recognizes the tension between Athens and Jerusalem, but he does not conceive of it as Strauss does. The question to be considered will be whether or not Strauss's account of the relationship between Jerusalem and Athens has left him susceptible to Girard's critique of philosophy, particularly his critique of Heidegger. Has Strauss overlooked philosophy's complicity in scapegoating, and its cultural role in hiding the victim from view?

Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 85-104
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.