MarranosThe Other of the Other
The Other of the Other
Translated by David Broder
Marranos were Spanish or Portuguese Jews living in the Iberian Peninsula who converted to Christianity to avoid being massacred or forced to flee following the expulsion of Jews and Muslims from Spain in 1391 but they continued to practice Judaism in secret. They outwardly embraced Catholicism but preserved Judaism in their hearts. 

While the Marranos are commonly associated with the persecution of Jews at the time of the Spanish Inquisition, Donatella Di Cesare sees the Marranos as the quintessential figure of the modern condition: the Marranos were not just those that modernity has cast out as the ‘other’, but were those ‘others’ who were forced to disavow their beliefs and conceal themselves. They were ‘the other’s other’, the product of a double exclusion, condemned to a life of existential duplicity with no way out, spurned by both Catholics and Jews and unable fully to belong to either community. But this double life of the Marrano turned out also to be a secret source of strength. Doubly estranged, with no possibility of redemption, the Marrano was the protagonist not only of an external emigration but also of an internal migration: the exploration of the inner territory of the self and a predisposition towards radical thinking that would become hallmarks of modernity. 

By treating the history of the Marranos as a prism through which to grasp the defining features of modernity, this highly original book that will be of interest to wide readership.
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  • October 2020 (hb)
    September 2020 (pb)
  • 126 pages
  • 138 x 216 mm / 5 x 9 in
Available Formats
  • Hardback $45.00
  • 9781509542031
  • Paperback $12.95
  • 9781509542048
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  • 9781509542055
Table of Contents
The Last Jews: to Begin
Romantic heroes or Cowardly Renegades?
Esther, and another Sovereignty
Convert and Flee!
When it All Began
Between Silence and Nostalgia
‘New Christians’?
The Other of the Other
An Existential Duplicity
The Discovery of the Self
Water and Blood. From Toledo to Nuremberg
The Great Purge
Flight and Withdrawal
The Theology of the Marranos
Teresa d’Ávila and the Interior Castle
‘Válete por ti!’
An Insult and its Fantastic History
The Planetary Aarchipelago and the Anarchic Nation
The ‘New Jews’, between Livorno and Amsterdam
Messianic Sparks
Spinoza, Democracy, the Freedom of the Secret
The Political Laboratory of Modernity
Marranism in the Third Reich
The Counter-History of the Defeated and the Revenge of the Marranos
‘The Marrano is a Spectre I love’
The Secret of Remembrance – the Recollection of the Secret
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About the Author
Donatella Di Cesare is Professor of Theoretical Philosophy at the Sapienza University of Rome.
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