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The Archaeology of Ancient Israelite Knowledge
Published by: Indiana University Press
The Archaeology of Ancient Israelite Knowledge reconstructs in carefully researched detail the worldview of the ancient Israelites writers responsible for the Hebrew Bible. What was the role of God in their lives? How did they see the relationship between God, nature, and themselves? Contrary to prevailing scholarly understanding, Robert Kawashima argues that the ancient Israelites saw God in a radically different way than the peoples around them. God no longer interconnected everything—humans, nature—but became seen as sharply separated from nature.
Elegantly written and powerfully argued, The Archaeology of Ancient Israelite Knowledge is essential reading for anyone wanting to grasp the Hebrew Bible and the ancient world that gave rise to it.
List of Abbreviations
2. The Early History of "God"
3. The House of God
4. The Discovery of the Self in Israelite Literature
5. Alienation and the Tragic Adventure of Biblical History
6. From Autochton to Alien
7. The Dawn of Apocalypticism
Robert S. Kawashima is Associate Professor at the University of Florida in the Department of Religion and the Center for Jewish Studies. He is author of Biblical Narrative and the Death of the Rhapsode.
"The Archaeology of Ancient Israelite Knowledge is a brilliant book, filled with insights and beautifully written, about the conceptual world of the Hebrew Bible."~Ronald Hendel, University of California, Berkeley
"The Archaeology of Ancient Israelite Knowledge constitutes an important intervention in Hebrew Bible scholarship, but also in comparative literature and the study of ancient myth."~Austin Busch, State University of New York, Brockport
"It is hard to think of any scholar I would rather read than Robert Kawashima. His work unfailingly reminds us of the way in which sustained and intelligent analysis can rearrange what we think we know. The present book synthesizes an extraordinary amount of learning and textual engagement in order to trace – with precision and rigor – the biblical "rupture in thought" which allowed for the emergence of the metaphysical dualism lying behind distinctions between God and world, mind and body, and myth and history. Really, this is a stunningly original work of scholarship with profound and far-reaching implications."~Tod Linafelt, Georgetown University
"Kawashima invites us to consider the revolutionary conception of God in the Hebrew Bible by drawing insightful comparisons with Mesopotamian and Greek configurations. The Archaeology of Ancient Israelite Knowledge is a work of erudite and original scholarship."~Ilana Pardes, Author of The Song of Songs: A Biography
"Many biblicists have compared ancient literatures to illuminate the Bible, but Robert Kawashima is arguably the main modern scholar to use the Hebrew Bible as a foundational text for comparative literature itself. From his groundbreaking first book, on how and why the Hebrew Bible presents the ancient Mediterranean's first extended works of imaginative prose, to regular publications in journals, he avoids simply applying preexisting interpretive techniques. Instead, his Archaeologyof Ancient Israelite Knowledge proposes a new kind of comparative history of ancient literature and, astonishingly, often succeeds."~Seth Sanders- University of California, Journal of Religion