The Old Testament Between Theology and History: A Critical Survey

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Westminster John Knox Press, Jan 1, 2008 - Religion - 476 pages
From its inception at the time of the Enlightenment until the mid-twentieth century, the historical-critical method constituted the dominant paradigm in Old Testament studies. In this magisterial overview, Niels Peter Lemche surveys the development of the historical-critical method and the way it changed the scholarly perception of the Old Testament. In part 1 he describes the rise and influence of historical-critical approaches, while in part 2 he traces their decline and fall. Then, in part 3, he discusses the identity of the authors of the Old Testament, based on the content of the literature they wrote, demonstrating that the collapse of history does not preclude critical study. Part 4 investigates the theological consequences of this collapse and surveys Old Testament and biblical theology in its various manifestations in the twentieth century. An appendix includes a history of Palestine from the Stone Age to modern times, constructed without recourse to the Old Testament.
 

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Contents

The HistoricalCritical Paradigm in Its Historical Context
31
Reading Texts in the Context of HistoricalCritical Scholarship
44
HistoricalCritical Scholarship and Ancient Israel
70
The Old Testament and the Changing Sciences
101
The Crisis of HistoricalCritical Scholarship
110
The Text and Its Author or the Text and Its Reader
167
What Are We Talking About?
257
Canonical History and Theology
270
Old Testament Theologies of the Twentieth Century
284
Canonical Theology
327
Elements from the Discussion
365
The Contribution of the Copenhagen School
379
The History of Israel or the History of Palestine?
393
Indexes
455
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

Niels Peter Lemche is Professor at the Department for Biblical Exegesis, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.

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