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Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Department of Philosophy

Meet faculty and staff in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Denver.

Faculty & Staff

Sarah Pessin

  • Sarah Pessin

    Sarah Pessin

Associate Professor
Sturm Hall 265 (Suite 257)
2000 E. Asbury Ave.
Phone: 303-871-7731
Email: spessin@du.edu
Website: Sarah Pessin's Portfolio page

Areas of expertise/Research interests

  • Jewish philosophy
  • Neoplatonisms (including the transmission of texts from Greek into Arabic, Hebrew and Latin medieval traditions)
  • comparative Jewish, Islamic and Christian medieval philosophy
  • modern Jewish philosophy (Buber, Rosenzweig, Levinas)

Current research and projects

  • editor for Judaism section, Medieval Sourcebook (new project with Bruce Foltz, David Bradshaw, Eric Perl, Mohammad Azadpur)
  • project director, Holocaust Memorial Social Action Site (at DU)

Professional biography

Sarah Pessin is associate professor of philosophy, the Emil and Eva Hecht Chair in Judaic studies and the director of the Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Denver.

She also has recently been helping oversee the new Holocaust Memorial Social Action Site project at the University.

Sarah works on various topics in Jewish and Islamic philosophy, Neoplatonisms, medieval philosophy, modern Jewish thought and comparative philosophies of religion—including methodological questions about the study of texts across cultures.

Sarah is active in interfaith bridge-building, and is interested in the nature of the sacred and its relation to inter-human engagement and response.

Education

PhD The Ohio State University
MA Columbia University
BA Yeshiva University, Stern College

Publications

Forthcoming:

  • Ibn Gabirol's Theology of Desire: Embroidering the Hidden in Jewish Medieval Philosophy (Cambridge University Press)
  • "Forms of Hylomorphism in Islamic Philosophy," in Routledge Companion to Islamic Philosophy, edited by Richard Taylor and Luis X. López-Farjeat (New York: Routledge University Press)
  • "On the Possibility of a Hidden Christian Will: Methodological Pitfalls in the Study of Medieval Jewish Philosophy," in Encountering the Medieval in Modern Jewish Thought, edited by Aaron Hughes and James Diamond (Leiden: E. J. Brill), pp. 52-94
  • "Divine Presence, Divine Absence and the Plotinian Apophatic Dialectic: Reinterpreting 'Creation and Emanation' in Isaac Israeli," in Religion and Philosophy in the Platonic and Neoplatonic Traditions: from Antiquity to the Early Medieval Period, edited by John Finamore (Berlin: Akademie Verlag)
  • "Face," in Encyclopedia of the Bible and Its Reception, edited by Hans-Josef Klauck, Volker Leppin, Bernard McGinn, Choon-Leong Seow, Hermann Spieckermann, Barry Dov Walfish, Eric Ziolkowski (De Gruyter)
  • "Faith," in Encyclopedia of the Bible and its Reception, edited by Hans-Josef Klauck, Volker Leppin, Bernard McGinn, Choon-Leong Seow, Hermann Spieckermann, Barry Dov Walfish, Eric Ziolkowski (De Gruyter)

In progress:

  • Intercultural Charity: Reading Philosophy Across Greek, Jewish, Muslim and Christian Contexts (manuscript)
  • "Free Will," in Encyclopedia of the Bible and its Reception, edited by Hans-Josef Klauck, Volker Leppin, Bernard McGinn, Choon-Leong Seow, Hermann Spieckermann, Barry Dov Walfish, Eric Ziolkowski (De Gruyter)
  • "Jewish and Islamic Neoplatonism," in Handbook of Neoplatonism, edited by Paulina Remes and Svetla Slaveva-Griffin (Acumen Press)
  • "Method, Alterity, and Kindness: On the Art of Thinking the Present Through the Past," invited contribution to Jewish Philosophy for the Twenty-First Century, edited by Hava Tirosh-Samuelson and Aaron Hughes
  • "On a Phenomenology of Universal Matter: Finding the Unexpected Trace of God in Ibn Gabirol's Metaphysics," invited contribution to Jewish Negative Theology, edited by Michael Fagenblat

Find more of Sarah's publications on her DU portfolio page.