Silvana Kandel Lamdan
Silvana Kandel Lamdan has a BA in Philosophy and Jewish Thought and a MA in Jewish Thought from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Today she is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Haifa, under the supervision of Dr. Cedric Cohen Skalli. In her doctoral research, she intends to analyze historically, philosophically and theologically the intellectual interchange between Judaism and radical political Latin American Liberation Theology in the years 1960s-1980s. She is conducting a critical study of the explicit and implicit dialogue that the first generation of liberation theologians had with the Jewish tradition and with modern Jewish thinkers, especially those from German-speaking milieus like Hermann Cohen, Martin Buber, Franz Rosenzweig, Ernst Bloch, and Walter Benjamin. At the beginning of their intellectual careers, many Latin American theologians that would later become the referents of the various branches of Liberation Theology (like Gutierrez, Scannone, Ellacuría, Dussel, and others), spent a period studying in Europe, mostly in Germany, Belgium, and France. There they were exposed to Jewish social and political thinking, either through direct reading of their writings, or through the mediation of leading Christian pre and post-Holocaust German theologians like Karl Barth, Jürgen Moltmann, Johann Baptist Metz, and others, whose theologies would have a significant influence in these nascent Latin American revolutionary trends. Silvana is studying how “Jewish ideas” in intense dialogue with both Jewish tradition and German culture, would be transformed by Christian theologians, in the context of Latin American oppressive regimes of the 1960s and 1970s, into radical political and theological ideas.