chapter  6
Other than the Other: Levinas and the Educational Questioning of Infi nity
ByIAN MCPHERSON
Pages 15

Throughout the most holy texts of Judaism-the fi ve books of Moseschildren are encouraged to ask questions. Is this disrespect for the other, or does respect for the other require listening better to children, encouraging them to become better questioners? Even in the nightmare story of Abraham almost sacrifi cing Isaac, his fi rstborn son-as if saying they have no right to

differ from, be otherwise than, those who do practice such sacrifi ce-Isaac nevertheless begins to question Abraham. (Genesis ch. 22, Anon. 1963)

Perhaps learning from this, Jewish children, at least since the fi rst Passover sacrifi ce and exodus from Egypt, have been apparently responsible for questioning their parents about the meaning of ritual acts in which they are, actually or potentially, involved together. Perhaps this living tradition of Passover suggests how later generations can take responsibility for repairing weaknesses of responsibility in earlier generations, as parents and children, but also as teachers and learners.