EDUCATION: High School of Music and Art, New York City, NY
State Regents Scholarship for a college in New York State.

Barnard College, Honors in Philosophy.

Sorbonne & College de France. Fulbright Scholar.

Columbia University. M.A. Thesis: “Action and Purpose in Merleau-Ponty,” with Ph.D candidacy.

University of London, Kings College for Hegel lectures of J.N. Findlay and philosophical seminars. Reading for dissertation at the Library of the British Museum.

The Pennsylvania State University. Ph.D. Dissertation, “Hegel’s Humanism.”


Fulbright Scholar, Sorbonne and College de France.

Graduate Assistant, Department of Religion, Columbia University.

Secretary, Seminar on Hermeneutics, Columbia University.

Teaching Assistant, Department of Philosophy, The Pennsylvania State University.

Assistant Professor of Philosophy, The State University of New York at Stony Brook.

Faculty Research Fellowship, The State University of New York at Stony Brook.

Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Brooklyn College of The City University of New York.

Free-lance Editorial Consultant, Harper & Row, Dutton, McGraw-Hill, Bobbs-Merrill, Penguin Books, Avon Books, Pocket Books, Book-of-the-Month Club, reading general fiction and nonfiction, as well as philosophic and religious manuscripts. Research Affiliate, Department of Traditional and Modern Philosophy,
University of Sydney, Australia.

PSC-CUNY Research Award.

Tow Award for faculty achievement, Brooklyn College, CUNY.

Professor of Philosophy, Brooklyn College.

Professor of Philosophy Emerita, Brooklyn College of the City University of New York.


Author: Dear Abbie: The Non-Advice Column at www.dearabbie-nonadvice.com


1. A GOOD LOOK AT EVIL, second edition, revised and expanded with new Preface and Section Four (Wipf and Stock, 2018).

2. A GOOD LOOK AT EVIL, first edition (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1987). Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize by Temple University Press. “The Right Way to Act: Indicting the Victims,” from Chapter Six, anthologized in ECHOES FROM THE HOLOCAUST: PHILOSOPHICAL REFLECTIONS ON A DARK TIME, eds. Alan Rosenberg and Gerald E. Meyers (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1988), and in THINKING THE UNTHINKABLE: MEANINGS OF THE HOLOCAUST, ed. Roger S. Gottlieb (New York/Mahwah, N.J.: Paulist Press, 1990).

2. THE CONSOLATIONS OF PHILOSOPHY: HOBBES’S SECRET; SPINOZA’S WAY by Henry M. Rosenthal, edited and with an Introduction by Abigail L. Rosenthal. (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1989).

3. CONVERSIONS: A PHILOSOPHIC MEMOIR (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1994).




1. Review Notes. Frederick Sontag, DIVINE PERFECTION: POSSIBLE IDEAS OF GOD (New York: Harper & Bros., 1962); C. W. Lightbody, THE JUDGEMENTS OF JOAN (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1961), in The Review of Metaphysics, Dec. 1962.

2. French Translation. Gabriel Marcel, “Mortality, Hope and Freedom,” in THE EXISTENTIAL BACKGROUND OF HUMAN DIGNITY: THE WILLIAM JAMES LECTURES (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1963), 136-53; “The Threat to Integrity,” ibid. 154-70.

3. French Translation. Aron Gurwitsch, “Philosophical Presuppositions of Logic,” in STUDIES IN PHENOMENOLOGY AND PSYCHOLOGY (Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1966), 350-58; “On a Perceptual Root of Abstraction,” ibid., 385-89.

4. Article. “A Hegelian Key to Hegel’s Method,” Journal of the History of Philosophy 9 (1971): 205-12. Abstract in The Review of Metaphysics, 1971.

5. Article. “Feminism Without Contradictions,” The Monist 57 (1973): 28-42. Anthologized in MORTALITY IN THE MODERN WORLD, ed. L. Habermehl (Encino, California: Dickenson Press, 1976). Abstract in The Philosopher’s Index 7 (1973).

6. Article. “A Reply to Professor Ezorsky,” Measure 34 (1975): 2.

7. Article. “The Intelligibility of History,” Journal of History of Philosophy 15 (1977): 55- 70. Abstract in The Review of Metaphysics, March, 1977.

8. Preface. “About Leo Bronstein,” in KABBALAH AND ART by Leo Bronstein (Hanover, New Hampshire: Brandeis University Press, 1980), xix-xxiii. Reprinted with “Addendum: August l997” in second edition of KABBALAH AND ART (New Brunswick and London: Transaction Publishers, l997), xxi-xxvi.

9. Review. Michael Wyschogrod, THE BODY OF FAITH: JUDAISM AS CORPORAL ELECTION (New York: The Seabury Press, 1983), in Commonweal, Sept (1985) 508.

10. Article. “The Filial Art,” Journal of Applied Philosophy 2 (1985): 10-29.

11. Article. “Getting Past Marx and Freud,” Clio 15 (1985): 61-81.

12. Review Essay.”Everybody’s Running Scared: Levin’s Feminism and Freedom,” in Quadrant, Jan-Feb., 1989: 35-39.

13. Review Essay. Berel Lang, ACT AND IDEA IN THE NAZI GENOCIDE (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1990), in Canadian Philosophical Reviews 11 (1991) 113-15.

14. Review essay. Katie Roiphe, THE MORNING AFTER: SEX, FEAR AND FEMINISM ON CAMPUS (Boston, New York, Toronto, London: Little, Brown and Company, 1993), in Academic Questions 7 (1994) 76-78.

15. Article. “In ‘Windowless Chambers’,” Inquiry 41 (l998) 3-20. Discussed at faculty seminar on Introspection, Department of Philosophy at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

16. Review Essay.”Berel Lang’s Holocaust in the Future Tense,” in Midstream, December 2000: 36-38. Berel Lang, THE FUTURE OF THE HOLOCAUST; BETWEEN HISTORY AND MEMORY (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1999).

17. Article. “What Ayer Saw When He Was Dead,” Philosophy 79 (2004): 507-531.

18. Review Essay.”Reflections on ABRAHAM’S PROMISE and Michael Wyschogrod,” Midstream, September/October 2005: 20-23. Michael Wyschogrod, ABRAHAM’S PROMISE; JUDAISM AND JEWISH-CHRISTIAN RELATIONS (Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmanns Publishing Company, 2004).

19. Article. “Moral Competence and Bernard Williams,” Philosophy 81 (2006): 255-277.

20. Review Essay,”Jihad’s Deconstruction of Islam,” in Midstream, March/April 2006: 33-37. Faisal Devji, LANDSCAPES OF THE JIHAD (Cornell University Press, 2005).

21. Article. “Is It 1938 Again? A View of the Queens College, CUNY Conference,” in Midstream, November/December 2007: 18-23.

22. Article. “Tales of Rav Tsair,” in Midstream, Spring 2009: 43-46.

23. Article. “Defining Evil Away: Arendt’s Forgiveness,” Philosophy: the Journal of the Royal Society of Philosophy, 86 (2011): 155-174.

PAPERS AND TALKS (partial list):

1. “Filial Piety,” Department of Philosophy, University of Melbourne, Australia, October 25, 1982. Also read at the Philosophy Seminar, Macquarie University, New South Wales, Australia, May 25, 1983.

3. “Getting Past Marx and Freud,” Department of General Philosophy, University of Sydney, Australia, September 23, 1982. Also read at Department of Philosophy, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia, October 13, 1982, and at joint meeting of Philosophy and Psychology Clubs of Brooklyn College of CUNY. April 9, 1984.

4. “A Good Look at Evil” (excerpts from chapters of the book then in progress), Philosophy Colloquium, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, March 23, 1984. Also read at the Philosophy Colloquium at Brooklyn College, April 5, 1984, and at the Philosophy Seminar at the University of Bradford, U.K., April 30, 1986.

5. “Hegel and the Novel,” Colloquium in Literature and Philosophy, The Graduate School of the City University of New York, Feb. 27, 1985. Retitled “Hegel, the Novel, and the Nineteenth Century” and read at the Forty-Third Annual Meeting of the American Society for Aesthetics, at the University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky, October 24, 1985.

6. “Selling Out” (excerpted from a chapter in A GOOD LOOK AT EVIL, then in progress), Department of Philosophy, University of Southampton, U.K., May 15, 1986.

7. “A Good Look at Evil: Concerns and Themes,” a talk at the Graduate Humanities Seminar of the Gallatin Division of New York University, Sept. 28, 1988. Also given to the Philosophy Society of Brooklyn College of CUNY, Dec. 5, 1988.

8. Participant, the Symposium on Free Will and Cult Conversion, at the invitation of the American Family Foundation, June 2, 1994.

9. “In ‘Windowless Chambers,'” at Philosophy Society and Philosophy Colloquium of Brooklyn College, Oct. 26, 1994, and at CUNY Graduate Center Philosophy Spring 1995 Colloquium Series, February 22, 1995.

10. “Hegel vs. Nietzsche: A Debate,” taking the part of Hegel, with Professor Mary Wiseman, who took the part of Nietzsche, sponsored by the Philosophy Society of Brooklyn College of CUNY, March 16, 1995.

11. Invited participant, the thirty-second Oberlin Colloquium in Philosophy, on the topic of “Moral Psychology, Moral Identity.” April 21-23, 1995.

12. “The Passage Through Our Time: Answering the Question ‘Why?'” at the Graduate Interdisciplinary Proseminar of the Gallatin School of Individualized Study, New York University, October 17, 1995.

13. CONVERSIONS, reading and discussion, in the series, “Scholarship in the First Person,” at the Wolfe Institute for the Humanities, Brooklyn College, October 25, l995.

14. “Mischance and Evil” at the Philosophy Society and Philosophy Colloquium, Brooklyn College, October 16, 1996.

15. Debate, “Reconsidering Women’s Studies,” taking the part of Women’s Studies, with Carol Iannone taking the opposition, at the invitation of the New York Chapter of the National Association of Scholars, October 26, 1996.

16. “Simone de Beauvoir,” Introduction and Afterward for a documentary film on de Beauvoir sponsored by the Philosophy Society, Brooklyn College, March 24, l997.

17. Debate, “David Hume’s DIALOGUES CONCERNING NATURAL RELIGION, Part XII,” opposing Hume, with Professors Elmer Sprague and Eric Steinberg taking Hume’s part, Philosophy Society, Brooklyn College, April 2, l997.

18. ” Plato’s SYMPOSIUM,” Colloquium with Professor Craig Williams, sponsored by the Classics Society, Brooklyn College, November 16, l998.

19. “What Ayer Saw When He Was Dead,” at the Philosophy Society and Philosophy Colloquium, Brooklyn College, March 29, 2000.

20. “Leo’s Orphans: A Survivor’s Musings on the Power of Protective Tenderness,” The Leo Bronstein Memorial Lecture, at the invitation of the Gallatin School of Individualized Study, New York University and The Leo Bronstein Trust, given at The Salmagundi Club, April 14, 2000.

LISTINGS in current editions:




2017 Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award

International Biographical Center Cambridge England 2000 Outstanding Intellectuals of the 21st Century, 9th ed.


1. Front page story, “Tumult Brews at Brooklyn College Over Its Vaunted Core Curriculum,” [The N. Y.] Forward, August 1, 1997.

2. Full page editorial, “Attack on Academic Standards,” New York Post, August 10, 1997. The editorial did not mention my name, but reflected information I supplied in a long telephone interview.

3. Cover story, “Saving the Core: A Curricular Battle,” The Chronicle of Higher Education, October 17, 1997. Photo on cover.