Biblical Interpretation beyond Historicity evaluates the new perspectives that have emerged since the crisis over historicity in the 1970s and 80s in the field of biblical scholarship. Several new studies in the field, as well as the ‘deconstructive’ side of literary criticism that emerged from writers such as Derrida and Wittgenstein, among others, lead biblical scholars today to view the texts of the Bible more as literary narratives than as sources for a history of Israel. Increased interest in archaeological and anthropological studies in writing the history of Palestine and the ancient Near East leads to the need for an evidence-based history of Palestine.
This volume analyses the consequences of the question: "If the Bible is not history, what is it then?" The editors, Hjelm and Thompson are members of the Copenhagen School, which was formed in the light of this question and the commitment to a new approach to both the history of Palestine and the Bible’s place in ancient history. This volume features essays from a range of highly regarded scholars, and is divided into three sections: "Beyond Historicity", which explores alternative historical roles for the Bible, "Greek Connections", which discusses the Bible’s context in the Hellenistic world and "Reception", which explores extra-biblical functions of biblical studies.
Offering a unique gathering of scholars and challenging new theories, Biblical Interpretation beyond Historicity is invaluable to students in the field of Biblical and East Mediterranean Studies, and is a crucial resource for anyone working on both the archaeology and history of Palestine and the ancient Near East, and the religious development of Europe and the Near East.
The confidence in the historicity of the Hebrew Bible has collapsed over the last three decades. In this remarkable book, fourthteen writers brilliantly steer the debate away from historical positivism and beyond the deconstruction of the old myth-narratives of the Bible. The collection offers highly original and diverse perspectives on the syncretic traditions of the biblical stories. A work of enormous significance, it shows how new paradigms have come to view key texts of the Hebrew Bible are the product of the Hellenistic era.
- Professor Nur Masalha, SOAS, University of London, UK
Part I: Beyond Historicity
Philip R. Davies
Trine Bjørnung Hasselbach
Part II: Greek Connections
Niels Peter Lemche
Part III: Reception
Flemming A. J. Nielsen