Theodicies and Anti-theodicies in The Quarrel

Decent Essays
If God could have made the world without evil and suffering, why is the world full of evil and suffering? This is the question The Quarrel raises in terms of the Holocaust. According to Webster’s dictionary, quarrel implies a heated, verbal dispute typically between two friends. The two friends in The Quarrel, Chaim, an agnostic writer, and Hersh, a rabbi, become caught up in a quarrel as to why such a good God could allow such evil to be present in the world. This essay will discuss the unexplainable evil that threatens our sense of meaning and purpose by exploring the major issues of theodicies and anti-theodicies in The Quarrel. Exploring these theodicies and anti-theodicies is important in understanding why evil exists rather than explaining the science behind what causes evil.
The first theodicy to be discussed is the “theodicy of protest,” which contradicts itself making it an anti-theodicy. This theodicy is one that allows atheism to appear considering there is no logical explanation as to why an anomic event happens. One has a hard time believing God is good when He could have and should have controlled many situations, such as the Holocaust. For example, Chaim doesn’t understand how God could let six million of His children die in the concentration camps. In the film Chaim states, “If I knew God, I would put him on trial,” (Brandes 1991). This quote represents the “theodicy of protest” by Chaim refusing to accept that God’s job would include the murder of innocent
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