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Medicine and the German JewsA History$
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John M. Efron

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780300083774

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300083774.001.0001

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In Praise of Jewish Ritual

In Praise of Jewish Ritual

Modern Medicine and the Defense of Ancient Traditions

(p.186) Chapter 6 In Praise of Jewish Ritual
Medicine and the German Jews

John M. Efron

Yale University Press

This chapter describes the complementary relationship enjoyed by science and Judaism. The Jewish scientist was not swayed by the nineteenth-century French philosopher Auguste Comte, who proclaimed that in the coming positivist order, scientists, rather than priests, would be canonized. Few Jewish scientists have ever suggested that a man in a lab coat would or should replace the rabbi in his long, black coat. On the contrary, among Central European Jews in the nineteenth century, there were many who sought to make use of science in order to help them bolster their links to Jewish tradition. What this means is that for Jews in the modern period, science and religion have proven to be perfectly compatible, which raises a number of other questions. All of these questions are addressed here.

Keywords:   complementary relationship, science, Judaism, Jewish scientist, Auguste Comte, positivist order, Central European Jews, Jewish tradition

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