The Oxford Handbook of Apocalyptic Literature
John Joseph Collins
Oxford University Press, 2014 - Religion - 546 pages
Apocalypticism arose in ancient Judaism in the last centuries BCE and played a crucial role in the rise of Christianity. It is not only of historical interest: there has been a growing awareness, especially since the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, of the prevalence of apocalyptic beliefs in the contemporary world. To understand these beliefs, it is necessary to appreciate their complex roots in the ancient world, and the multi-faceted character of the phenomenon of apocalypticism.
The Oxford Handbook of Apocalyptic Literature is a thematic and phenomenological exploration of apocalypticism in the Judaic and Christian traditions. Most of the volume is devoted to the apocalyptic literature of antiquity. Essays explore the relationship between apocalypticism and prophecy, wisdom and mysticism; the social function of apocalypticism and its role as resistance literature; apocalyptic rhetoric from both historical and postmodern perspectives; and apocalyptic theology, focusing on phenomena of determinism and dualism and exploring apocalyptic theology's role in ancient Judaism, early Christianity, and Gnosticism.
The final chapters of the volume are devoted to the appropriation of apocalypticism in the modern world, reviewing the role of apocalypticism in contemporary Judaism and Christianity, and more broadly in popular culture, addressing the increasingly studied relation between apocalypticism and violence, and discussing the relationship between apocalypticism and trauma, which speaks to the underlying causes of the popularity of apocalyptic beliefs. This volume will further the understanding of a vital religious phenomenon too often dismissed as alien and irrational by secular western society.
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Chapter 1 What Is Apocalyptic Literature?
Part I The Literary and Phenomenological Context
Part II The Social Function of Apocalyptic Literature
Part III Literary Features of Apocalyptic Literature
Part IV Apocalyptic Theology
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allegory ancient angels Apoc apoca apocalyptic discourse apocalyptic literature apocalyptic texts apocalypticism argued ascent audience authority Baruch believers ben sira biblical book of daniel book of revelation branch davidians brill century Christian apocalypses context culture dead sea scrolls divine dreams and visions dualism early Christian early Jewish earth eerdmans empire Enoch eschatological ethnic evil example ezekiel ezra genre Gnostic God’s Grand rapids Greek heaven heavenly hebrew bible hekhalot hellenistic human imperial interpretation isaiah israel Jerusalem Jesus Jewish and Christian Jewish apocalypses Jews John John’s Jubilees Judaism judgment kingdom leiden literary lyptic messianic millennial monsters motifs mysticism myth narrative Neuromancer nickelsburg one’s Paul perspective political prophecy prophetic Pseudepigrapha Qumran rabbi reality religion religious resistance revelation rhetoric righteous roman sapiential scholars scriptural second Temple seer social studies symbolic Testament theology tion Torah traditions transcendent trauma violence visionary Watchers wisdom worldview Yarbro Collins York