I study the Jewish tradition, religious thought, and theories and methods in the study of religion. My research focuses on the modern period, with particular areas of interest including Jewish thought, Jewish-Christian relations, philosophy of religion, religion and politics, hermeneutics, and religious ethics. I have recently published a book on Moses Mendelssohn (1729-1786), the Enlightenment philosopher generally seen as the founder of modern Jewish thought. Reading Mendelssohn’s well-known German works alongside his neglected Hebrew writings, I call for a far-reaching reassessment of this influential figure, recovering previously unrecognized arguments by Mendelssohn about philosophy, citizenship, and religious authority, and showing that his thought has much to offer broader conversations about modernity and religion. I have also published some of the first translations of Mendelssohn’s Hebrew writings (a finalist for the National Jewish Book Award), and I have begun a second book project on Nachman Krochmal (1785-1840), modernity’s leading Eastern European Jewish philosopher.

Peer-Reviewed Books

Moses Mendelssohn’s Living Script: Philosophy, Practice, History, Judaism (Indiana University Press, 2017)

Peer-Reviewed Articles and Peer-Reviewed Book Chapters

“Poetry, Music, and the Limits of Harmony: Mendelssohn’s Aesthetic Critique of Christianity,” in Sara Levy’s World: Bach, Gender, and Judaism in Enlightenment Berlin, eds. Nancy Sinkoff and Rebecca Cypess, Eastman Studies in Music (University of Rochester Press, forthcoming 2018)

“Worlds to Come Between East and West: Immortality and the Rise of Modern Jewish Thought,” in Olam Ha-zeh v’Olam Ha-ba: This World and the World to Come in Jewish Belief and Practice, ed. Leonard Greenspoon, Studies in Jewish Civilization (Purdue University Press, forthcoming 2017)

“Is God Eternal? Revisiting Mendelssohn and Rosenzweig on Reason, Revelation, and the Name of God,” Modern Theology 33.1 (2017): 69-91

“Law, Ethics, and the Needs of History: Mendelssohn, Krochmal, and Moral Philosophy,” Journal of Religious Ethics 44.2 (2016): 352-377

“Civic Freedom out of the Sources of Judaism: Mendelssohn, Maimonides, and Law’s Promise,” Journal of Jewish Ethics 2.1 (2016): 86-111

“Spinoza, Maimonides and the Politics of Prophecy,” Jewish Studies Quarterly 21.1 (2014): 67-98

“‘Finden Sie mich sehr amerikanisch?’: Jacob Taubes, Hermann Cohen, and the Return to German-Jewish Liberalism,” Leo Baeck Institute Year Book 57 (2012): 187-210

Moses Mendelssohn,” Oxford Bibliographies in Jewish Studies, ed. David Biale (Oxford University Press, 2012)

Invited Book Chapters

“Anarchy and Law: Mendelssohn on Philosophy and Judaism,” in Moses Mendelssohn: Enlightenment, Religion, Politics, Nationalism, eds. Charles Manekin and Michah Gottlieb, Studies and Texts in Jewish History and Culture (University Press of Maryland, 2015), 237-273


Selections from the writings of Moses Mendelssohn (Hebrew), in Moses Mendelssohn: Writings on Judaism, Christianity, and the Bible, ed. Michah Gottlieb, trans. Allan Arkush, Curtis Bowman, and Elias Sacks, Brandeis Library of Modern Jewish Thought (Brandeis University Press, 2011; Finalist for 2011 National Jewish Book Award)

Review Essays

Saving the World,” Jewish Review of Books 7.1 (2016): 23-25


Expanding the Jewish Studies Classroom: Citizenship, Vulnerability, and the Trinity,” Association for Jewish Studies Essays on Teaching