The Emergence of I

Article by Andreas E. Masvie in Journal for Continental Philosophy of Religion.

Among the ancients, there was no proper conception of the I. Yet an I emerges in ancient Israel. I therefore inquire into the philosophical anthropology of ancient Israel. How did the I emerge? By interpreting the Song of Songs as political myth, from which a philosophical anthropology can be unearthed and reconstructed, I theorize that not only an I, but also a different kind of we emerged through gift-dynamics. Then I demonstrate that these gift-dynamics are compatible with the ancient Israelites’ religious-political institutions and manifest itself in their collective psyche.