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The State of Israel

The concepts of nationhood and nation building in the period of the Emancipation are very much a feature of cultural and intellectual history. This is particularly apparent in the work of Krochmal. Krochmal's authority in the so-called Historical School identifies him with the view that modern relevancies can be adduced from the ancient texts of the Torah. In discussing the Torah as a way of life for modern Jews, Kaplan cites as a guiding principle that "the primary requisite for the continuity of Jewish consciousness is not blind acceptance of the traditional beliefs, but a vital interest in the objects upon which those beliefs were centered."3 In other words, a historical rather than legalist consciousness governs acceptance of culturally definition. According to Kaplan, Krochmal's approach was to find relevant and universal meaning behind the concrete symbol or mere fact, even though the symbol may have appeared antique: "By making accessible and intelligible numerous facts which seemed to have relevance only in the traditional setting, by furnishing the modern Jew with a connected and plausible account of the Jewish past, they have revitalized the ancient texts and have made possible the retention of the Torah in its widest sense as an object of Jewish consciousness."4 What is lost in the programmatically interpretive approach to history is scientific or factual precision, says Kaplan. However, the emphasis on making meani


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The State of Israel. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 23:47, October 22, 2014, from
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