Sunday, September 02, 2012

Did Judith Butler, Radical Scholar, Really Claim Moses Is A Product of "Arab" Egypt?

Yes, she did.

A recent winner Of Adorno Prize, there has been controversy because of Judith Butler's endorsement of Hamas and Hezbollah As "Progressive" and "Part of the Global Left"

After her initial denial of endorsing the terrorist groups, video was provided proving that despite her denial, Butler did it, at 16:20 of the video:

Now Butler has come out defending her claim and her claim that Israel violates Jewish values -- a claim that of course raises the question just how knowledgeable Judith Butler is of Jewish values.

The answer apparently is: not very much.

In debunking The fundamental dishonesty of Judith Butler, Elder of Ziyon notes Judith Butler's bizarre claim that Moses deep connection to Arab (?) Egypt illustrates that "which means that Judaism is not possible without this defining implication in what is Arab".

It is a shockingly ignorant idea that needs to be seen to be believed -- and this is an idea Butler presents in her new book: Parting Ways: Jewishness and the Critique of Zionism (New Directions in Critical Theory):

Elder of Ziyon writes:
The first chapter of Butler's book opens with a bizarre theory about Moses that is emblematic of her dishonesty about Judaism:
It came as a surprise to me, and also a gift, to read one of Edward Said’s last books, Freud and the Non-European, not only because of the lively reengagement with the figure of Moses it contains, but because Moses becomes for him an opportunity to articulate two theses that are, in my view, worth considering. The first is that Moses, an Egyptian, is the founder of the Jewish people, which means that Judaism is not possible without this defining implication in what is Arab.’ Such a formulation challenges hegemonic Ashkenazi definitions of Jewishness. But it also implies a more diasporic origin for Judaism, which suggests that a fundamental status is accorded the condition by which theJew can not be defined without a relation to the non-Jew. It is not only that, in diaspora, Jews must and do live with non—Jews,and must reflect on how precisely to conduct a life in the midst of religious and cultural heterogeneity, but also that the Jew can never be fully separated from the question of how to live among those who are not Jewish. The figure of Moses, however, makes an even more emphatic point, namely, that, for some, Jew and Arab are not finally separable categories, since they are lived and embodied together in the life of the Arab Jew....One key foundational moment for Judaism, the one in which the law is delivered to the people, centers upon a figure for whom there is no lived distinction between Arab and Jew.
Read the whole thing, for a further debunking and examination of Judith Butler's ignorance of Judaism

Indeed, Butler's shallow, superficial understanding of Judaism will probably come as a surprise to many. It seems that Butler's knowledge of Judaism is based on your average run of DeMille ignorance.

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Empress Trudy said...

To many Egyptians, suggesting to them they are Arabs is quite an insult. That's as bad as calling a Turk an Arab.

Bill said...

I don't think that her knowledge rises to the level of "run of DeMille ignorance". Even those whose knowledge is based on film and think that Moses was Egyptian are likely to know that the ancient Egyptians were not Arabs.