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What is fair? How and when can punishment be legitimate? Is there recompense for human suffering? How can we understand ideas about immortality or an afterlife in the context of critical thinking on the human condition? In this book L.E. Goodman presents a general theory of justice that makes systematic use of the Jewish sources and brings them into a philosophical dialogue with the leading ethical and political texts of the Western tradition.;Goodman takes an ontological approach to questions of natural and human justice, developing a theory of community and of non-vindictive yet retributive punishment that is grounded in careful analysis of various Jewish sources - biblical, rabbinic, and philosophical. His exegesis of these sources allow Plato, Kant and Rawls to join in a discourse with Spinoza and medieval reationalists, such as Saadiah and Maimonides, who speak in a very different idiom but address many of the same themes. Drawing on sources old and new, Jewish and non-Jewish, Goodman offers fresh perspectives on important moral and theological issues that should be of interest to both Jewish and secular philosophers.