skip to content

Faculty of Divinity



Daniel H. Weiss took up his post in the Divinity Faculty in 2010, after previously teaching at the University of Virginia and at Oberlin College.  He earned his PhD at the University of Virginia, after having received his Bachelor's degree from Princeton University and a Masters of Theological Studies degree from Harvard Divinity School.  


Research Interests

Dr Weiss's research interests, with a focus in the study of Jewish texts and traditions, and in philosophy of religion, include:

  • Relations between Jewish and Christian philosophical theology and ethics

  • Aspects of ethics, hermeneutics and theopolitics in biblical and classical rabbinic literature

  • Modern Jewish religious thought and philosophy (esp. Moses Mendelssohn, Hermann Cohen, Franz Rosenzweig, Martin Buber, Emmanuel Levinas)

  • Theories and practices of interreligious dialogue and communication

  • The (contested) relationship between scripture and philosophy, both in the Jewish intellectual tradition and more generally

In addition, Dr Weiss is actively involved in the Cambridge Inter-faith Programme and in Scriptural Reasoning.  He is also co-leader of the Scripture & Violence Project, which explores common assumptions about the relationship between scriptural texts and real-world acts of violence.


Key publications: 


Books and Edited Volumes

  • Modern Jewish Philosophy and the Politics of Divine Violence (Cambridge University Press, 2023). (link)
  • Tsimtsum and Modernity: Lurianic Heritage in Modern Philosophy and Theology.  Edited by Agata Bielik-Robson and Daniel H. Weiss. (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2021). (link)
  • Scripture and Violence. Edited by Julia Snyder and Daniel H. Weiss (London: Routledge, 2021). (link)
  • Interpreting Interreligious Relations with Wittgenstein: Philosophy, Theology and Religious Studies. Edited by Gorazd Andrejč and Daniel H. Weiss (Boston: Brill, 2019). (link)
  • Talmud and Christianity: Rabbinic Judaism after Constantinespecial double issue of Jewish Studies Quarterly 25.3 and 25.4 (2018).  Edited by Michal Bar-Asher Siegal, Daniel H. Weiss, and Holger Michael Zellentin.  Part 1: (link); Part 2 (link)
  • Purity and Danger Now: New Perspectives. Edited by Robbie Duschinsky, Simone Schnall, and Daniel H. Weiss (London: Routledge, 2016). (link)
  • Rethinking Exile, Center, and Diaspora in Modern Jewish Culture, special issue of Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies 34.4 (Summer 2016). Edited by Daniel H. Weiss and Yaron Peleg. (link)
  • Paradox and the Prophets: Hermann Cohen and the Indirect Communication of Religion (Oxford University Press, 2012). (link)



  • ‘Talking with Heretics: Tracing a Theme in Moses Mendelssohn’s Jerusalem and Classical Rabbinic Literature.’ In Modern Jewish Thought on Crisis: Interpretation, Heresy, and History, eds. Ghilad H. Shenhav, Cedric Cohen-Skalli and Gilad Sharvit (De Gruyter, 2024), 185-209. (link)
  • ‘Idolatry and Pluralism in Jewish Tradition: The Mishnah, Monotheism, and Trust in the Power of the Unique God.’ In Beyond Binaries: Religious Diversity in Europe, eds. Joshua Ralston and Klaus von Stosch (Brill, 2023), 67-83. (link)
  • ‘Iconic Theology in Classical Rabbinic Literature and Orthodox Christianity.’ In Elonei Mamre: The Encounter of Judaism and Orthodox Christianity, eds. Sybil Sheridan, Elena Narinskaya, Nicholas de Lange (Fortress Academic, 2022), 89-98. (link)
  • ‘Spinoza’s Theological-Political Treatise: Jewish Philosophy in an Anti-Jewish Guise?’ In The Marrano Way: Between Betrayal and Innovation, ed. Agata Bielik-Robson (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2022), 133-153. (link)
  • 'Against Autoimmune Self-Sacrifice: Religiosity, Messianicity, and Violence in Derrida’s “Faith and Knowledge” and in Classical Rabbinic Judaism.' Eidos: A Journal for Philosophy of Culture 5.3 (2021), 23-34. (link)
  • ‘Wanted: Nonviolence without Conceptualism’ In Signs of Salvation: A Festschrift for Peter Ochs, eds. Mark Randall James and Randi Rashkover (Eugene, Oregon: Cascade, 2021), 58-67. (link)
  • ‘Tsimtsum between the Bible and Philosophy: Levinas, Luria, and Genesis 1’ In Tsimtsum and Modernity: Lurianic Heritage in Modern Philosophy and Theology, eds. Agata Bielik-Robson and Daniel H. Weiss. (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2021), 61-82. (link)
  • ‘“And God Said”: Do biblical commands to conquer land make people more violent, or less?’ In Scripture and Violence, eds. Julia Snyder and Daniel H. Weiss (London: Routledge, 2021), 32-46. (link)
  • ‘David Weiss Halivni, Breaking the Tablets: Jewish Theology After the Shoah, 2007. In The New Jewish Canon: Ideas & Debates 1980-2015, eds. Yehuda Kurtzer and Claire E. Sufrin (Boston: Academic Studies Press, 2020), 210-214. (link)
  • ‘New Models of Religious Diversity: Modern Judaism beyond the Scylla of “Political” and the Charybdis of “Religious.” Political Theology 20.4 (2020), 376-380. (link)
  • ‘Bloodshed and the Ethics and Theopolitics of the Jewish Dietary Laws.’ In Feasting and Fasting: The History and Ethics of Jewish Food, eds. Aaron S. Gross, Jody Myers, and Jordan R. Rosenblum (New York: NYU Press, 2019), 288-304. (link)
  • ‘Christians as Levites: Rethinking Early Christian Attitudes toward War and Bloodshed via Origen, Tertullian, and Augustine.’ Harvard Theological Review 112.4 (October 2019), 491-516. (link)
  • ‘The God of the Intellect and the God of Lived Religion(s): Reflections on Maimonides, Wittgenstein and Burrell.’ In Interpreting Interreligious Relations with Wittgenstein: Philosophy, Theology and Religious Studies, eds. Gorazd Andrejč and Daniel H. Weiss (Brill: Boston, 2019), 174-193. (link)
  • ‘Marranism as Judaism as Universalism: Reconsidering Spinoza.’ Religions 10.3, 168 (March 2019). (link)
  • ‘The Christianization of Rome and the Edomization of Christianity: Avodah Zarah and Political Power.’  Jewish Studies Quarterly 25.4 (November 2018), 394-422. (link)
  • ‘Born into Covenantal Salvation? Baptism and Birth in Early Christianity and Classical Rabbinic Judaism.’ Jewish Studies Quarterly 24.4 (December 2017), 318-388. (link)
  • ‘Aquinas's Opposition to Killing the Innocent and its Distinctiveness within the Christian Just War Tradition.’ Journal of Religious Ethics 45.3 (September 2017), 481-509. (link)
  • ‘Ethics Without Substances: Foucault, Mishnaic Ethics, and Human Ontology.’ Telos 179 (Summer 2017), 135-156. (Co-authored with Robbie Duschinsky) (link)
  • ‘Scriptural Reasoning and the Academy: The Uses and Disadvantages of Expertise and Impartiality.’ Journal of Scriptural Reasoning, 16.1 (June 2017). (link)
  • ‘Impurity without repression: Julia Kristeva and the biblical possibilities of a non-eliminationist construction of religious purity.’ In Purity and Danger Now: New Perspectives, eds. Robbie Duschinsky, Simone Schnall, Daniel H. Weiss (London: Routledge, 2016), 205-220. (link)
  • ‘Purity and the West: Christianity, Secularism, and the Impurity of Ritual.’ In Purity and Danger Now: New Perspectives, eds. Robbie Duschinsky, Simone Schnall, Daniel H. Weiss (London: Routledge, 2016), 181-204. (Co-authored with Holger Zellentin) (link)
  • ‘“But Mordecai Bowed Not, Nor Did Him Reverence”: The Book of Esther’s Challenge to ‘Secular’ and to ‘Religious’ Jewish Identities.' Journal of Textual Reasoning 9.1 (September 2016). (link)
  • ‘A Nation without Borders?: Modern European Emancipation as Negation of Galut.’ Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies 34.4 (Summer 2016), 71-97. (link)
  • 'Hermann Cohen.' In Oxford Bibliographies in Jewish Studies, ed. Naomi Seidman (New York: Oxford University Press, 2016). (Co-authored with Paul Nahme) (link)
  • 'Walter Benjamin and the Antinomianism of Classical Rabbinic Law.' Bamidbar: Journal for Jewish Thought and Philosophy 4.1 (2015), 56-78 (link)
  • 'Theology and Development: Christian and Jewish Approaches.' In The Routledge Handbook of Religions and Global Development, ed. Emma Tomalin (Routledge, 2015), 53-67.  (Co-authored with Stephen Plant.) (link)
  • 'John Howard Yoder, Classical Rabbinic Judaism, and the Renunciation of the Sword: A Reappraisal.' Journal of Scriptural Reasoning, 13.2 (November 2014). (link)
  • 'Embodied Cognition in Classical Rabbinic Literature.' Zygon: Journal of Religion and Science, 48.3 (September 2013), 788-807. (link)
  • 'The Fruits of Contradiction: Evolution, Cooperation and Ethics in an Inter-Religious Context.' Studies in Christian Ethics, 26.2 (May 2013), 186-195. (link)
  • 'Direct Divine Sanction, the Prohibition of Bloodshed, and the Individual as Image of God in Classical Rabbinic Literature.' Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics, 32.2 (Fall/Winter 2012): 23–38. (link)
  • 'Reasoning from out of Particularity: Possibilities for Conversation in Theological Ethics.'Studies in Christian Ethics 25.2 (May 2012), 236-243. (link)
  • 'Just Peacemaking and Ethical Formation in Classical Rabbinic Literature.' The Conrad Grebel Review 30.1 (Winter 2012), 76-95. (link)
  • 'A Dialogue between Philosophy and Scripture: Rereading Hermann Cohen through Bakhtin.' The Journal of Religion 90.1 (January 2010). 15-32. (link)
  • 'The (odd) deixis of 'you' in rabbinic prayer.' Journal of Textual Reasoning 5.1 (December 2007). (link)

Teaching and Supervisions

  •  Studying World Religions: History, Comparison, Dialogue (A7)
  •  Modern Judaism: Thought, Culture, and History (B14)
  • The Jewish Tradition and Christianity: From Antiquity to Modernity (C8)
  • Philosophy, Ethics, and the Other (D2c)
  • MPhil and Doctoral supervision
Research supervision: 

Topics of current and recent postgraduate supervision:

  • Reconceiving notions of Orthodoxy and Modernity in Modern Jewish Thought
  • Engaging critiques of Levinas's conception of the Other
  • Joseph Soloveitchik and inter-faith dialogue
  • Elijah del Medigo and Averroistic epistemology
  • Levinas, the Cartesian infinite, and first philosophy
  • The status of 'philosophy' in the thought of Shneur Zalman of Liadi
  • Augustine and Levinas on the ethical significance of time
Polonsky-Coexist Senior Lecturer in Jewish Studies
Fellow and Graduate Tutor, Darwin College

Contact Details

Email address: 
01223 763412
Takes PhD students
Available for consultancy