Shalem College
Menachem Kellner

Prof. Menachem Kellner

Ph.D., Washington University
M.A., Washington University

Menachem Kellner is the chair of the Philosophy and Jewish Thought Department. An expert in medieval Jewish philosophy and modern Jewish thought, Prof. Kellner taught at the University of Haifa for 33 years. Among other positions at the university, he acted as chair of the Department of Maritime Civilizations and dean of students, and held the Sir Isaac and Lady Edith Wolfson Chair of Religious Thought. He has been a visiting professor at the Sorbonne and at Northwestern University.

Author of nineteen books and close to one hundred articles, Prof. Kellner has twice been short-listed for the National Jewish Book Award. Two of his translations of classic texts have appeared in the Yale Judaica Series.

Full CV

Selected Publications

Maimonides' Confrontation With Mysticism (London: Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2006)

Must a Jew Believe Anything? (London: Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 1999)

"The War in Lebanon: A View from Haifa," OpenDemocracy, August 7, 2006



Torah in the Observatory: Maimonides, Gersonides, Song of Songs (Brighton: Academic Studies Press, 2010).

Science in the Bet Midrash: Studies in Maimonides (Brighton: Academic Studies Press, 2009).

Maimonides on the Decline of the Generations and the Nature of Rabbinic Authority(Albany: SUNY Press, 1996).

Maimonides on Judaism and the Jewish People (Albany: SUNY Press, 1991).

Maimonides on Human Perfection, Brown Judaic Studies Series (Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1990).

Dogma in Medieval Jewish Thought (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1986). Paperback edition printed in 2004.

Edited Books

Gersonides, Commentary on Song of Songs (Ramat Gan: Bar-Ilan University, 2001).

Menachem Kellner, and Charles Manekin, eds., Human Freedom and Moral Responsibility: General and Jewish Perspectives (College Park: University of Maryland Press, 1997).

The Pursuit of the Ideal: Jewish Writings of Steven Schwarzschild     (Albany: SUNY Press, 1990).

Isaac Abravanel, Rosh Amanah (Ramat Gan: Bar-Ilan University Press, 1993). [Hebrew]

Contemporary Jewish Ethics (New York: Sanhedrin Press, 1978). Second printing in 1985.


"'The Voice is the Voice of Jacob, but the Hands are the Hands of Esau': Isaac Abravanel between Judah Halevi and Moses Maimonides," Jewish History(forthcoming).

"From Moses to Moses," Rambam Maimonides [Open Access] Medical Journal 1 (2010), pp. 1-5.

"R' Joseph Kafih on the Question: 'Who is a Jew?'," Sha'anan 16 (2010), pp. 171-177. [Hebrew]

"Maimonides' 'True Religion' – for Jews, or All Humanity?" Me'orot [Edah Journal] 7 (1) (2008).

"A New and Unexpected Textual Witness to the Reading 'He Who Kills a Single Person – It Is as if He Destroyed an Entire World," Tarbiz 75 (2007), pp. 565-566. [Hebrew]

"Did the Torah Precede the Cosmos? – A Maimonidean Study," Da'at 61 (2007), pp. 83-96. [Hebrew]

"Worship of the Heart vs. Worship in the Temple," Sha'anan 10 (2005), pp. 131-139. [Hebrew]

"'Mishneh Torah' – Why?" Mesorah le-Yosef 4 (2005), pp. 316-329. [Hebrew]

"The Moral Significance of the Laws of Ritual Purity and Impurity," Sha'anan 9 (2004), pp. 213-221. [Hebrew]

"A Selected Bibliography of Studies on Maimonides, 1991-," Jewish History 18 (2004), pp. 243-289.

"Rabbis in Politics: A Study in Medieval and Modern Jewish Political Theory," State and Society 3 (2003), pp. 673-698. [Hebrew]

"Maimonides on the Nature of Ritual Purity and Impurity," Da'at 50-52 (2003), pp. 1-30.

"Bibliographia Gersonideana 1992-2002," Aleph 3 (2003), pp. 343-374.

"Is Maimonides' Ideal Person Austerely Rationalist?" American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 76 (2002), pp. 125-143.

"Was Maimonides Truly Universalist?" Trumah: Beitraege zur juedischen Philosophie 11 (Festgabe zum 80. Geburtstag von Ze'ev Levy) (2001), pp. 3-15.

"Strauss' Maimonides vs. Maimonides' Maimonides," Le'ela (Dec, 2000), pp. 29-36.

"Can Orthodoxy Share the Public Square?" Jewish Political Studies Review 11 (1999), pp. 127-143.

"Could Maimonides Get into Rambam's Heaven?" Journal of Jewish Thought and Philosophy 8 (1999), pp. 231-242.

"Maimonides' Allegiances to Torah and Science," Torah U’mada 7 (1997), pp. 88-104.

"Well, Can There Be Jewish Ethics or Not?" Journal of Jewish Thought and Philosophy 5 (1996), pp. 237-241.

"On Universalism and Particularism in Judaism," Da'at 36 (1996), pp. v-xv.

 "Gersonides on Imitatio Dei and the Dissemination of Scientific Knowledge," Jewish Quarterly Review 85 (1995), pp. 275-296.

"Isaac Abravanel on Dogma and Faith," Da'at 32-33 (1994), pp. xlvii-lix.

"Politics and Perfection: Gersonides vs. Maimonides," Jewish Political Studies Review 6 (1994), pp. 49-82.

"Gersonides on the Song of Songs and the Nature of Science," Journal of Jewish Thought and Philosophy 4 (1994), pp. 1-21.

"Gersonides on the Role of the Active Intellect in Human Cognition," Hebrew Union College Annual 65 (1994), pp. 233-259.

"Maimonides on the Science of the Mishneh Torah," AJS Review 18 (1993), pp. 169-194.

"Reading Rambam: Approaches to the Interpretation of Maimonides," Jewish History 5 (1991), pp. 73-93.

"Maimonides' Conception of the Ultimate Meaning of Life," Journal of Ultimate Reality and Meaning 14 (1991), pp. 175-184.

"On the Status of the Astronomy and Physics in Maimonides' Mishneh Torah: A Chapter in the History of Science," British Journal for the History of Science 24 (1991), pp. 453-463.

"The Place of Ethics in Medieval Jewish Philosophy," Judaica 5 (Solomon Goldman Essays) (1990), pp. 56-70. Also published in Shofar 9 (1990), pp. 32-47.

"Gersonides' Introduction to his Commentary on 'Song of Songs'," Da'at 23 (1989), pp. 15-32. [Hebrew]

"The Conception of the Torah as a Deductive Science in Medieval Jewish Thought,"Revue des Etudes Juives 146 (1987), pp. 265-279. Revised version published as "Joseph Albo's 'Sefer ha-Ikkarim'," Solomon Goldman Lectures, M. Gruber, ed. (1993), vol. 6, pp. 139-149.

"Heresy and the Nature of Faith in Medieval Jewish Philosophy," Jewish Quarterly Review 77 (1987), pp. 299-318. Also published in The Jewish Philosophy Reader, Daniel H. Frank, Oliver Leaman, and Charles Manekin, eds (London: Routledge, 2000).

"Reflections on the Impossibility of Jewish Ethics," Bar-Ilan Annual: Moshe Schwarcz Memorial Volume 22-23 (1987), pp. 45-52.

"Messianic Postures in Israel Today," Modern Judaism 6 (1986), pp. 197-209. Also published in Essential Papers on Messianic Movements in Jewish History, Marc Saperstein, ed. (New York: New York University Press, 1992), pp. 504-519.

"Bibago on Dogma," Da'at 15 (1985), pp. 89-101. [Hebrew]

"Inadvertent Heresy in Medieval Jewish Thought," Jerusalem Studies in Jewish Thought 3 (1984), pp. 393-403. [Hebrew]

"Dogma in Medieval Jewish Thought," Studies in Bibliography and Booklore 15 (1984), pp. 5-21.

"Maimonides' 'Thirteen Principles' and the Structure of the Guide of the Perplexed,"Journal of the History of Philosophy 20 (1982), pp. 76-84.

"Jewish Dogmatics after the Spanish Expulsion," Jewish Quarterly Review 72 (1982), pp. 178-187.

"What is Heresy?" Studies in Jewish Philosophy 3 (1982), pp. 55-70.

"Rabbi Shimon ben Zemah Duran on the Principles of Judaism," Proceedings of the American Academy for Jewish Research 48 (1981), pp. 231-265.

"Gersonides on Miracles, the Messiah and Resurrection," Da'at 4 (1980), pp. 5-34.

"Gersonides on the Problem of Volitional Creation," Hebrew Union College Annual51 (1980), pp. 111-128.

"Jewish Philosophy in the 1980s: Preliminary Comments," Studies in Jewish Philosophy 1 (1980), pp. 10-15.

"Rabbi Levi Ben Gerson: A Bibliographical Essay," Studies in Bibliography and Booklore 12 (1979), pp. 13-23.

"Maimonides, Crescas, and Abravanel on Exodus 20:2," Jewish Quarterly Review69 (1979), pp. 129-157.

"Maimonides and Gersonides on Mosaic Prophecy," Speculum 42 (1977), pp. 62-79.

"Rabbi Isaac Abravanel on the Principles of Judaism," Journal of the American Academy of Religion 45 (1977), pp. 1183-1200.

"Gersonides and His Cultured Despisers," Journal of Medieval and Renaissance Studies 6 (1976), pp. 269-296.

 "Democracy and Civil Disobedience," Journal of Politics 37 (1975), pp. 899-911. (This article appeared with a response by Sidney Hook: "In Defense of Terminological Sobriety – A Reply to Professor Kellner").

"Rabbi Isaac Bar Sheshet's Responsum Concerning the Study of Jewish Philosophy," Tradition 15 (1975), pp. 110-118.

"Louis Jacobs' Doctrine of Revelation," Tradition 14 (1974), pp. 143-147.

"Gersonides, Providence, and the Rabbinic Tradition," Journal of the American Academy of Religion 43 (1974), pp. 673-685.