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Faith in God as Faith in Man: The Concept of Trust in Levinas’ Thouhgt

Silvia Dadà


The term “trust” appears very rarely in the work of Emmanuel Levinas. Even the related one of “faith”, although more present, is used with some caution in the philosophical arguments of the author. This absence of the term, however, does not imply an absence of the concept. In this article I will show that, far from being absent, trust always goes together with responsibility, which is the central concept of the Levinas’ ethics. I will focus on two kinds of trust: an original one, which transcends knowledge, and a conscious one, which concerns knowledge, calculation and judgement. I will show that, for Levinas, both the relationship with God and the ethical relationship with the other man are characterized by the original trust, whereas the conscious trust takes place in justice.


Levinas; Trust; Faith; God; Responsibility; Ethics

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