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Yitzhak Y. Melamed [28]Yitzhak Melamed [25]
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Yitzhak Melamed
Johns Hopkins University
  1.  89
    The First Draft of Spinoza's Ethics.Yitzhak Melamed - forthcoming - In Spinoza in 21st-Century French and American Philosophy. Bloomsbury.
    The two manuscripts of the Korte Verhanedling that were discovered in the mid-nineteenth century contain two appendices. These appendices are even more enigmatic than the KV itself, and it is the first appendix that is the subject of this study. Unfortunately, there are very few studies of this text, and its precise nature seems to be still in question after more than a century and a half of scholarship. It is commonly assumed that the appendices were written after the body (...)
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  2.  15
    “Spinoza on the Value of Humanity”.Yitzhak Melamed - forthcoming - In Re-Evaluating the Value of Humanity.
    Spinoza is a hardcore realist about the nature of human beings and their desires, ambitions, and delusions. But he is neither a misanthrope nor in the business of glorifying the notion of a primal and innocent non-human nature. As he writes: Let the Satirists laugh as much as they like at human affairs, let the Theologians curse them, let Melancholics praise as much as they can a life that is uncultivated and wild, let them disdain men and admire the lower (...)
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  3. “Omnis Determinatio Est Negatio” – Determination, Negation and Self-Negation in Spinoza, Kant, and Hegel.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2012 - In Eckart Forster & Yitzhak Y. Melamed (eds.), Spinoza and German Idealism. Cambridge University Press.
    Spinoza ’s letter of June 2, 1674 to his friend Jarig Jelles addresses several distinct and important issues in Spinoza ’s philosophy. It explains briefly the core of Spinoza ’s disagreement with Hobbes’ political theory, develops his innovative understanding of numbers, and elaborates on Spinoza ’s refusal to describe God as one or single. Then, toward the end of the letter, Spinoza writes: With regard to the statement that figure is a negation and not anything positive, it is obvious that (...)
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  4.  53
    Hegel, Spinoza, and McTaggart on the Reality of Time.Yitzhak Melamed - forthcoming - Internationales Jahrbuch des Deutschen Idealismus / International Yearbook of German Idealism.
    In this paper, I study one aspect of the philosophical encounter between Spinoza and Hegel: the question of the reality of time. The precise reconstruction of the debate will require a close examination of Spinoza's concept of tempus (time) and duratio (duration), and Hegel's understanding of these notions. Following a presentation of Hegel's perception of Spinoza as a modern Eleatic, who denies the reality of time, change and plurality, I turn, in the second part, to look closely at Spinoza's text (...)
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  5.  28
    Does Eternity Have A Future?Yitzhak Melamed - 2018 - The Philosophers' Magazine 81:40-44.
    Metaphysics as an independent discipline has a surprisingly short history. Until the early eighteenth century, many, perhaps even most, writers on “metaphysics” primarily had the eponymous work of Aristotle in mind. In the writings of the early eighteenth-century German rationalists—Christian Wolff and Alexander Baumgarten—we find a conception of metaphysics that is no longer necessarily tied to Aristotle’s great work. But metaphysics as a discipline was not blessed with longevity, as a dozen years or so before Louis XVI it was condemned (...)
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  6. Spinoza's Metaphysics of Thought: Parallelisms and the Multifaceted Structure of Ideas.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2013 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 86 (3):636-683.
    In this paper, I suggest an outline of a new interpretation of core issues in Spinoza’s metaphysics and philosophy of mind. I argue for three major theses. (1) In the first part of the paper I show that the celebrated Spinozistic doctrine commonly termed “the doctrine of parallelism” is in fact a confusion of two separate and independent doctrines of parallelism. Hence, I argue that our current understanding of Spinoza’s metaphysics and philosophy of mind is fundamentally flawed. (2) The clarification (...)
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  7. Spinoza's Anti-Humanism.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2010 - In Smith Justin & Fraenkel Carlos (eds.), The Rationalists. Springer/Synthese.
    A common perception of Spinoza casts him as one of the precursors, perhaps even founders, of modern humanism and Enlightenment thought. Given that in the twentieth century, humanism was commonly associated with the ideology of secularism and the politics of liberal democracies, and that Spinoza has been taken as voicing a “message of secularity” and as having provided “the psychology and ethics of a democratic soul” and “the decisive impulse to… modern republicanism which takes it bearings by the dignity of (...)
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  8.  45
    "Spinoza's Metaphysics and His Relationship to Hegel and the German Idealists".Yitzhak Melamed - 2017 - An Interview with Richard Marshall. 3:AM Magazine.
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  9.  43
    “ ‘A Substance Consisting of an Infinity of Attributes’: Spinoza on the Infinity of Attributes” in Ohad Nachtomy and Reed Wieneger (Eds.), Infinity in Early Modern Philosophy (Springer, Forthcoming).Yitzhak Melamed - 2018 - In Reed Winegar & Ohad Nachtomy (eds.), Infinity in Early Modern Philosophy. Springer.
    Though Spinoza's definition of God at the beginning of the Ethics unequivocally asserts that God has infinitely many attributes, the reader of the Ethics will find only two of these attributes discussed in any detail in Parts Two through Five of the book. Addressing this intriguing gap between the infinity of attributes asserted in E1d6 and the discussion merely of the two attributes of Extension and Thought in the rest of the book, Jonathan Bennett writes: Spinoza seems to imply that (...)
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  10. Why Spinoza is Not an Eleatic Monist (Or Why Diversity Exists).Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2011 - In Philip Goff (ed.), Spinoza on Monism. Palgrave.
    “Why did God create the World?” is one of the traditional questions of theology. In the twentieth century this question was rephrased in a secularized manner as “Why is there something rather than nothing?” While creation - at least in its traditional, temporal, sense - has little place in Spinoza’s system, a variant of the same questions puts Spinoza’s system under significant pressure. According to Spinoza, God, or the substance, has infinitely many modes. This infinity of modes follow from the (...)
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  11. “’Christus Secundum Spiritum’: Spinoza, Jesus, and the Infinite Intellect”.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2012 - In Neta Stahl (ed.), The Jewish Jesus. Routledge.
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  12. The Causes of Our Belief in Free Will: Spinoza on Necessary, ‘Innate,’ yet False Cognition.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2017 - In Spinoza’s Ethics: A Critical Guide. Cambridge University Press.
    This chapter will discuss Spinoza’s critique of free will, though our brief study of this topic in the first part of the chapter will aim primarily at preparing us to address the main topic of the chapter, which is Spinoza’s explanation of the reasons which force us to believe in free will. At times, Spinoza seems to come very close to asserting the paradoxical claim that we are not free to avoid belief in free will. In the second part of (...)
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  13. Spinoza's Deification of Existence.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2012 - Oxford Studies in Early Modern Philosophy 6:75-104.
    The aim of this paper is to clarify Spinoza’s views on some of the most fundamental issues of his metaphysics: the nature of God’s attributes, the nature of existence and eternity, and the relation between essence and existence in God. While there is an extensive literature on each of these topics, it seems that the following question was hardly raised so far: What is, for Spinoza, the relation between God’s existence and the divine attributes? Given Spinoza’s claims that there are (...)
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  14. “ ‘Let the Law Cut Through the Mountain’: Salomon Maimon, Moses Mendelssohn, and Mme. Truth”.Yitzhak Melamed - 2014 - In Lukas Muehlethaler (ed.), Höre die Wahrheit, wer sie auch spricht. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht. pp. 70-76.
    Moses Maimonides was a rare kind of radical. Being a genuine Aristotelian, he recommended following the middle path and avoiding extremism. Yet, within the sphere of Jewish philosophy and thought, he created a school of philosophical radicalism, inspiring Rabbis and thinkers to be unwilling to compromise their integrity in searching for the truth, regardless of where their arguments might lead. Both Spinoza and Salomon Maimon inherited this commitment to uncompromising philosophical inquiry. But of course, such willingness to follow a philosophical (...)
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  15. Hasdai Crescas and Spinoza on Actual Infinity and the Infinity of God’s Attributes.Yitzhak Melamed - 2014 - In Steven Nadler (ed.), Spinoza and Jewish Philosophy. Cambridge University Press. pp. 204-215.
    The seventeenth century was an important period in the conceptual development of the notion of the infinite. In 1643, Evangelista Torricelli (1608-1647)—Galileo’s successor in the chair of mathematics in Florence—communicated his proof of a solid of infinite length but finite volume. Many of the leading metaphysicians of the time, notably Spinoza and Leibniz, came out in defense of actual infinity, rejecting the Aristotelian ban on it, which had been almost universally accepted for two millennia. Though it would be another two (...)
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  16. The Building Blocks of Spinoza’s Metaphysics: Substance, Attributes and Modes.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2017 - In Michael Della Rocca (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Spinoza. Oxford University Press.
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  17. Spinoza's Amor Dei Intellectualis.Yitzhak Melamed - forthcoming - In Noa Naaman (ed.), Descartes and Spinoza on the Passions. Cambridge University Press.
    The notion of divine love was essential to medieval Christian conceptions of God. Jewish thinkers, though, had a much more ambivalent attitude about this issue. While Maimonides was reluctant to ascribe love, or any other affect, to God, Gersonides and Crescas celebrated God’s love. Though Spinoza is clearly sympathetic to Maimonides’ rejection of divine love as anthropomorphism, he attributes love to God nevertheless, unfolding his notion of amor Dei intellectualis at the conclusion of his Ethics. But is this a legitimate (...)
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  18. Spinoza's Metaphysics: Substance and Thought.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2013 - Oxford University Press USA.
    Yitzhak Melamed here offers a new and systematic interpretation of the core of Spinoza's metaphysics. In the first part of the book, he proposes a new reading of the metaphysics of substance in Spinoza: he argues that for Spinoza modes both inhere in and are predicated of God. Using extensive textual evidence, he shows that Spinoza considered modes to be God's propria. He goes on to clarify Spinoza's understanding of infinity, mereological relations, infinite modes, and the flow of finite things (...)
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  19.  47
    Cohen, Spinoza, and the Nature of Pantheism.Yitzhak Melamed - forthcoming - Jewish Studies Quarterly.
    The German text of Cohen’s Spinoza on State & Religion, Judaism & Christianity (Spinoza über Staat und Religion, Judentum und Christentum) first appeared in 1915 in the Jahrbuch für jüdische Geschichte und Literatur. Two years before, in the winter of 1913, Cohen taught a class and a seminar on Spinoza’s Theological-Political Treatise at the Hochschule für die Wissenschaft des Judentums. This was Cohen’s first semester at the Hochschule, after retiring from more than thirty years of teaching at the University of (...)
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  20. Review of Michah Gottlieb, Faith and Freedom: Moses Mendelssohn's Theological-Political Thought (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011. [REVIEW]Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2012 - Journal of Religion.
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  21. The Sirens of Elea: Rationalism, Monism and Idealism in Spinoza.Yitzhak Melamed - 2012 - In Antonia Lolordo & Duncan Stewart (eds.), Debates in Early Modern Philosophy. Blackwell.
    The main thesis of Michael Della Rocca’s outstanding Spinoza book (Della Rocca 2008a) is that at the very center of Spinoza’s philosophy stands the Principle of Sufficient Reason (PSR): the stipulation that everything must be explainable or, in other words, the rejection of any brute facts. Della Rocca rightly ascribes to Spinoza a strong version of the PSR. It is not only that the actual existence and features of all things must be explicable, but even the inexistence – as well (...)
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  22. A Glimpse Into Spinoza’s Metaphysical Laboratory: The Development of Spinoza’s Concepts of Substance and Attribute.Yitzhak Melamed - 2015 - In Yitzhak Y. Melamed (ed.), The Young Spinoza: A Metaphysician in the Making. Oxford University Press. pp. 272-286.
    At the opening of Spinoza’s Ethics, we find the three celebrated definitions of substance, attribute, and God: E1d3: By substance I understand what is in itself and is conceived through itself, i.e., that whose concept does not require the concept of another thing, from which it must be formed [Per substantiam intelligo id quod in se est et per se concipitur; hoc est id cujus conceptus non indiget conceptu alterius rei, a quo formari debeat]. E1d4: By attribute I understand what (...)
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  23. “Spinoza’s Respublica Divina:” in Otfried Höffe (Ed.), Baruch de Spinozas Tractatus Theologico-Politicus (Berlin: Akademie Verlag (Klassiker Aulegen), Forthcoming).Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2013 - In Otfried Höffe (ed.), Baruch de Spinozas Tractatus theologico-politicus. Akademie Verlag (Klassiker Aulegen). pp. 177-192.
    Chapters 17 and 18 of the TTP constitute a textual unit in which Spinoza submits the case of the ancient Hebrew state to close examination. This is not the work of a historian, at least not in any sense that we, twenty-first century readers, would recognize as such. Many of Spinoza’s claims in these chapters are highly speculative, and seem to be poorly backed by historical evidence. Other claims are broad-brush, ahistorical generalizations: for example, in a marginal note, Spinoza refers (...)
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  24. Charitable Interpretations and the Political Domestication of Spinoza, or, Benedict in the Land of the Secular Imagination.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2013 - In Mogens Laerke Eric Schilsser (ed.), The Methodology of the History of Philosophy. Oxford University Press.
    In a beautiful recent essay, the philosopher Walter Sinnott-Armstrong explains the reasons for his departure from evangelical Christianity, the religious culture in which he was brought up. Sinnot-Armstrong contrasts the interpretive methods used by good philosophers and fundamentalist believers: Good philosophers face objections and uncertainties. They follow where arguments lead, even when their conclusions are surprising and disturbing. Intellectual honesty is also required of scholars who interpret philosophical texts. If I had distorted Kant’s view to make him reach a conclusion (...)
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  25.  43
    Spinoza and Dutch Cartesianism: Philosophy and Theology, by Alexander X. Douglas. [REVIEW]Yitzhak Melamed - 2017 - Mind 126 (504):1244-1251.
    _ Spinoza and Dutch Cartesianism: Philosophy and Theology _, by DouglasAlexander X.. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015. Pp. viii + 184.
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  26. Eternity in Early Modern Philosophy.Yitzhak Melamed - 2016 - In Yitzhak Y. Melamed (ed.), Eternity: A History. Oxford University Press. pp. 129-167.
    Modernity seemed to be the autumn of eternity. The secularization of European culture provided little sustenance to the concept of eternity with its heavy theological baggage. Yet, our hero would not leave the stage without an outstanding performance of its power and temptation. Indeed, in the first three centuries of the modern period – the subject of the third chapter by Yitzhak Melamed - the concept of eternity will play a crucial role in the great philosophical systems of the period. (...)
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  27. Symposium on Yitzhak Y. Melamed, Spinoza’s Metaphysics,.Yitzhak Melamed - 2013 - Leibniz Review 23:207-222.
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  28. „ “What is Time?”.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2014 - In Aaron Garrett (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Eighteenth Century Philosophy. Routledge. pp. 232-244.
    Time is one of the most enigmatic notions philosophers have ever dealt with. Once subjected to close examination, almost any feature usually ascribed to time, leads to a plethora of fundamental and hard to resolve questions. Just as philosophers of the eighteenth-century attempted to take account of revolutionary developments in the physical sciences in understanding space, life, and a host of other fundamental aspects of nature (see Jones, Gaukroger, and Smith in this volume) they also engaged in fundamental and fruitful (...)
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  29. “ ’Scientia Intuitiva’: Spinoza’s Third Kind of Cognition”.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2013 - In Johannes Haag (ed.), Übergänge - diskursiv oder intuitiv? Essays zu Eckart Förster die 25 Jahre der Philosophie. Klostermann. pp. 99-116.
    I am not going to solve in this paper the plethora of problems and riddles surrounding Spinoza’s scientia intuitiva, but I do hope to break some new ground and help make this key doctrine more readily understandable. I will proceed in the following order (keep in mind the word ‘proceed’). I will first provide a close preliminary analysis of the content and development of Spinoza’s discussion of scientia intuitiva in the Treatise on the Emendation of the Intellect and the Ethics. (...)
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  30. The Metaphysics of the Theological-Political Treatise.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2010 - In Yitzhak Y. Melamed & Michael A. Rosenthal (eds.), Spinoza's 'Theological-Political Treatise': A Critical Guide. Cambridge University Press.
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  31. Review of Susan James, Spinoza on Philosophy, Religion, and Politics (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012). [REVIEW]Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2012 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews.
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  32.  32
    “Spinoza’s Metaphysics of Substance” in Don Garrett (Ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Spinoza. 2nd Edition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, Forthcoming.Yitzhak Melamed - forthcoming - In Don Garrett (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Spinoza. 2nd edition. Cambriddge University Press.
    ‘Substance’ (substantia, zelfstandigheid) is a key term of Spinoza’s philosophy. Like almost all of Spinoza’s philosophical vocabulary, Spinoza did not invent this term, which has a long history that can be traced back at least to Aristotle. Yet, Spinoza radicalized the traditional notion of substance and made a very powerful use of it by demonstrating – or at least attempting to demonstrate -- that there is only one, unique substance -- God (or Nature) -- and that all other things are (...)
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  33. “Spinoza, Tschirnhaus Et Leibniz: Qu’Est Un Monde?“.Yitzhak Melamed - 2014 - In Raphaële Andrault Pierre-François Moreau (ed.), Spinoza/Leibniz. Rencontres, controverses, réceptions. Presses universitaires de Paris. pp. 85-95.
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  34.  87
    Descartes' Method.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - forthcoming - In Larry Nolan (ed.), The Cambridge Descartes Lexicon. Cambride University Press.
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  35. Inherence, Causation, and Conceivability in Spinoza.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2012 - Journal of the History of Philosophy.
    In this paper I suggest a new interpretation of the relations of inherence, causation and conception in Spinoza. I discuss the views of Don Garrett on this issue and argue against Della Rocca's recent suggestion that a strict endorsement of the PSR leads necessarily to the identification of the relations of inherence, causation and conception. I argue that Spinoza never endorsed this identity, and that Della Rocca's suggestion could not be considered as a legitimate reconstruction or friendly amendment to Spinoza (...)
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  36. Review of Yirmiyahu Yovel, The Other Within: The Marranos: Split Identity and Emerging Modernity (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2009). [REVIEW]Yitzhak Melamed - 2009 - Journal of Modern History 82.
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  37.  22
    “When Having Too Much Power is Harmful? - Spinoza on Political Luck”.Yitzhak Melamed - 2018 - In Yitzhak Melamed & Hasana Sharp (eds.), Spinoza's Political Treatise: A Critical Guide. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 161-174.
    Spinoza’s celebrated doctrine of the conatus asserts that “each thing, as far as it can by its own power, strives to persevere in its being” (E3p6). Shortly thereafter Spinoza makes the further claim that the (human) mind strives to increase its power of acting (E3p12). This latter claim is commonly interpreted as asserting that human beings (and their associations) not only strive to persevere in their existence, but also always strive to increase their power. Spinoza’s justification for E3p12 relies (among (...)
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  38.  23
    ““Deus Sive Vernunft: Schelling’s Transformation of Spinoza’s God” in G. Anthony Bruno (Ed.), Freedom, Nature and Systematicity: Essays on F.W.J. Schelling (Oxford: Oxford University Press, Forthcoming).Yitzhak Melamed - forthcoming - In G. Anthony Bruno (ed.), Freedom, Nature and Systematicity: Essays on F.W.J. Schelling. Oxford University Press.
    On 6 January 1795, the twenty-year-old Schelling—still a student at the Tübinger Stift—wrote to his friend and former roommate, Hegel: “Now I am working on an Ethics à la Spinoza. It is designed to establish the highest principles of all philosophy, in which theoretical and practical reason are united”. A month later, he announced in another letter to Hegel: “I have become a Spinozist! Don’t be astonished. You will soon hear how”. At this period in his philosophical development, Schelling had (...)
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  39.  62
    From Bondage to Freedom. [REVIEW]Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2011 - The Leibniz Review 21:153-159.
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  40. The Metaphysics of Spinoza's Theological Political Treatise.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2010 - In Yitzhak Melamed (ed.), Spinoza's Theological Political Treatise: A Critical Guide. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
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  41.  57
    Causa Sive Ratio.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2005 - The Leibniz Review 15:163-168.
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  42.  29
    Hegel and Marx on the Rabble and the Problem of Poverty in Modern Society.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2001 - Iyyun 50 (1):23-40.
    The problem of poverty and the emergence of a rabble (Pöbel) in modern society does not find any reasonable solution in Hegel's Philosophy of Right (henceforth PR). Some scholars have stressed how unusual this is for Hegel, claiming that it would have been uncharacteristic for him to leave a major, acknowledged problem of his system unsolved: "On no other occasion does Hegel leave a problem at that." The importance of this problem is not limited to the threat it poses to (...)
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  43. Causa Sive Ratio. [REVIEW]Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2005 - The Leibniz Review 15:163-168.
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  44.  64
    Idolatry and its Premature Rabbinic Obituary.Yitzhak Y. Melamed - forthcoming - In Aaron Segal & Daniel Frank (eds.), Debates in Jewish Philosophy - Past and Present. Routledge.
    The current paper aims at merely charting a brief outline of Jewish philosophical attitudes toward idolatry. In its first part, I discuss some chief trends in Rabbinic approach toward idolatry. In the second part, I examine the role of idolatry in the philosophy of religion of Moses Maimonides and Benedict de Spinoza, two towering figures of medieval and early modern Jewish philosophy. In the third and last part, I address the relevance of the notion of idolatry to contemporary Jewish life, (...)
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  45.  55
    Gersonides and Spinoza on God’s Knowledge of Universals and Particulars.Yitzhak Melamed - forthcoming - In Gad Freudenthal, David Wirmer & Ofer Elior (eds.), Gersonides Through the Ages.
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  46.  46
    Review of Samuel Fleischacker, Divine Teaching and the Way of the World (Oxford University Press, 2011), Philosophical Review. Forthcoming. [REVIEW]Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2016 - Philosophical Review:151-154.
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  47.  49
    Review of Ezequiel L Posesorski, Between Reinhold and Fichte: August Ludwig Hülsen's Contribution to the Emergence of German Idealism (Karlsruhe: KIT, 2012).Yitzhak Melamed - 2014 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 52 (2):382-383.
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  48.  29
    Steven Nadler, Spinoza's “Ethics”: An Introduction. [REVIEW]Yitzhak Y. Melamed - 2007 - Ethics 117 (3):563-565.
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  49.  24
    The Autobiography of Solomon Maimon.Solomon Maimon, Yitzhak Melamed & Abraham Socher - 2018 - Princeton: Princeton University Press.
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  50. Eternity a History.Yitzhak Y. Melamed (ed.) - 2016 - Oxford University Press USA.
    Eternity is a unique kind of existence that is supposed to belong to the most real being or beings. It is an existence that is not shaken by the common wear and tear of time. Over the two and half millennia history of Western philosophy we find various conceptions of eternity, yet one sharp distinction between two notions of eternity seems to run throughout this long history: eternity as timeless existence, as opposed to eternity as existence in all times. Both (...)
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