Judging the Events of Our Time

Jennifer L. Culbert

in Thinking in Dark Times

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print December 2009 | ISBN: 9780823230754
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823235858 | DOI:
Judging the Events of Our Time

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This chapter recalls not only what Arendt says about judgment, but also of how she herself goes about judgment by revisiting her judgment of Adolf Eichmann and his trial. By calling attention to the theatrical quality of the Israeli House of Justice and the trial staged there, Arendt subtly underlines a claim she makes at the beginning of Eichmann in Jerusalem, a claim that is not often considered by critics but one that introduces an argument for which Arendt's account of the trial continues to receive much criticism. The claim is that a trial resembles a play. The argument is that the trial in Jerusalem was a failure.

Keywords: Hannah Arendt; banality of evil; trial; Eichmann in Jerusalem; Adolf Eichmann; Israeli House of Justice

Chapter.  2828 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social and Political Philosophy

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