Biblical Narratives, Archaeology and Historicity: Essays In Honour of Thomas L. Thompson

A Festschrift for a more than deserving friend (and my copy has arrived!):

This volume collects essays from an international body of leading scholars in Old Testament studies, focused upon the key concepts of the question of historicity of biblical stories, the archaeology of Israel/Palestine during the Bronze and Iron Ages, and the nature of biblical narratives and related literature.

As a celebration of the extensive body of Thomas L. Thompson’s work, these essays enable a threefold perspective on biblical narratives. Beginning with ‘method’, the contributors discuss archaeology, cultural memory, epistemology, and sociology of knowledge, before moving to ‘history, historiography and archaeology’ and close analysis of the Qumran Writings, Josephus and biblical rewritings. Finally the argument turn to the narratives themselves, exploring topics including the possibility of invented myth, the genre of Judges and the depiction of Moses in the Qu’ran. Presenting an interdisciplinary analysis of the historical issues concerning ancient Israel/Palestine, this volume creates an updated body of reference to fifty years’ worth of scholarship.

And the contents are fantastic:


1. The City of David as a Palimpsest, Margreet Steiner
2. Living in the Past? Keeping Up-To-Date in Ancient Near Eastern Studies, Raz Kletter
3. What People Want to Believe: Or Fighting Against Cultural Memory, Niels Peter Lemche
4. The Need for a Comprehensive Sociology of Knowledge of Biblical and Archaeological Studies of the Southern Levant, Emanuel Pfoh


5. The Abraham and Esau-Jacob Stories in the Context of the Maccabean Period, Lukasz Niesiolowski-Spanò
6. Tell Balata (Shechem): An Archaeological and Historical Reassessment, Hamdan Taha and Gerrit van der Kooij
7. ‘Solomon’ (Shalmaneser III) and the Emergence of Judah as an Independent Kingdom, Russell Gmirkin
8. On the Pre-Exilic Gap between Israel and Judah, Étienne Nodet
9. Perceptions of Israel’s Past in Qumran Writings: Between Myth and Historiography, Jesper Høgenhaven
10. Is Josephus’s John the Baptist Passage a Chronologically Dislocated Story of the Death of Hyrcanus II?, Greg Doudna
11. Thompson’s Jesus: Staring Down the Wishing Well, Jim West
12. The Qur’an as Biblical Rewriting, Mogens Müller


13. The Food of Life and the Food of Death in Texts from the Old Testament and the Ancient Near East, Ingrid Hjelm
14. A Gate in Gaza: An Essay on the Reception of Tall Tales, Jack M. Sasson
15. Deborah’s Topical Song: Remarks on the Gattung of Judges 5, Bob Becking
16. How Jerusalem’s Temple Was Aligned to Moses’ Tabernacle: About the Historical Power of an Invented Myth, Rainer Albertz
17. Can the Book of Nehemiah Be Used as an Historical Source, and If So, of What? Lisbeth S. Fried
18. Chronicles’ Reshaping of Memories of Ancestors Populating Genesis, Ehud Ben Zvi
19. The Book of Proverbs and Hesiod’s Works and Days, Philippe Wajdenbaum
20. The Villain ‘Samaritan’: The Samiri as the Other Moses in Qur’anic Exegesis, Joshua Sabih

That list of contributors is a veritable who’s who of scholars of exceptional reputation and it’s wonderful to see all those who are closest to Thomas taking part.

About Jim

I am a Pastor, and Lecturer in Church History and Biblical Studies at Ming Hua Theological College.
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2 Responses to Biblical Narratives, Archaeology and Historicity: Essays In Honour of Thomas L. Thompson

  1. Lisbeth S. Fried says:

    I thought this was supposed to be a surprise.


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