André Neher

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André Neher (22 October 1914 – 23 October 1988) was a Jewish scholar and philosopher, born 12, rue du Marché, in Obernai, Bas-Rhin. He was a student at the Collège Freppel in Obernai, then at the Lycée Fustel de Coulange in Strasbourg. He became professor at the Collège Erckmann-Chatrian in Phalsbourg, then at the Lycée Kléber in Strasbourg. During WWII, he lived in Brive-la-Gaillarde, where he was a member of Rabbi David Feuerwerker's community. After the War, he became a professor at the University of Strasbourg, before moving with his wife, Renée Neher-Bernheim, to Jerusalem, Israel.

L'Exil de la Parole[edit]

His masterpiece is The Exile of the Word (L'Exil de la Parole. Du silence biblique au silence d'Auschwitz, Ed.: Seuil, 1970), about the biblical silence, and God’s silence after the Shoah and the great world tragedies.[1] Neher thinks that through the Bible's silence one can discover divine revelation; through the silence human freedom is possible. He draws on the image of a suspension bridge to describe human “ontological insecurity and pain” caused by this freedom, which is characterized by a “radical factor of uncertainty”. For this reason it is necessary to concentrate our attention not on the ideas of redemption or salvation, but on “being here in our life”.[2]

L'espoir n'est pas dans le rire et dans la plénitude.
L'espoir est dans les larmes, dans le risque et dans leur silence

—  André Neher, L'Exil... p.256

Hope is not in the laugh or fullness.
Hope is in the tears, in the risk and in their silence

—  André Neher, L'Exil... p.256


  • Transcendance et immanence (1946; Transcendence and immanence)
  • Amos, contribution à l'étude du prophétisme (1950; Amos, contribution to the study of the prophecy)
  • L'Essence du prophétisme (1955; Quality of Prophecy)
  • Notes sur Qohélét (1951; Notes on Ecclesiastes)
  • Moïse et la vocation juive (1956; Moses and the Jewish vocation)
  • Le Conflit du sacré et du profane dans la renaissance de l'hébreu (1958; The conflict of sacred and profane in the renaissance of Hebrew)
  • Jérémie (1960; Jeremiah)
  • Histoire biblique du peuple d'Israël (1962; Biblical history of the people of Israel) — with Renée Neher
  • L'Existence juive (1962; The Jewish Existence)
  • Le Puits de l'Exil, la théologie dialectique du Maharal de Prague (1962; The Well of the Exile, dialectical theology of Maharal of Prague)
  • De l'hébreu au français. Manuel de l'hébraïsant : la traduction (1969; From Hebrew to French) — a manual for translating the Hebrew language into French
  • L'Exil de la Parole. Du silence biblique au silence d'Auschwitz (1970; The Exile of the Word, from the silence of the Bible to the silence of Auschwitz)
  • Dans tes portes, Jérusalem (1972; Within your gates, Jerusalem)
  • Ils ont refait leur âme (1979; They rebuilt their soul) ISBN 2-234-01192-2
  • Jérusalem, vécu juif et message (1984; Jerusalem, Lived Jerusalem And Message) ISBN 2-268-00287-X
  • David Gans, 1541-1613 : disciple du Maharal, assistant de Tycho Brahe et de Jean Kepler (1974; David Gans, 1541-1613 : disciple of Maharal, assistant of Tycho Brahe and of Johannes Kepler) ISBN 2-252-01723-6; English translation as Jewish thought and the scientific revolution of the sixteenth century : David Gans (1541-1613) and his times (1986) OUP. ISBN 978-0-19-710057-8.
  • Faust et le Maharal de Prague : le mythe et le réel (1987; Faust and Maharal of Prague : myth and reality) ISBN 2-13-039777-8.


  1. ^ David Patterson, Some theological aspects..., on The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, Vol. 548, No. 1, 200-218 (1996)
  2. ^ Sergio Quinzio, La Croce e il Nulla, Adelphi ed., Milan 1984, p.33

See also[edit]

External links[edit]