Tag Archives: John Van Seters

More on the Copenhagen Conference

Changing Perspectives in Old Testament Studies. Past, Present, and Future

International Conference at the University of Copenhagen, October 9-12, 2013

The conference centres on the manifold contributions to biblical studies by the scholars, John Van Seters, Thomas L. Thompson, Philip R. Davies, Niels Peter Lemche and Keith Whitelam. In various ways their work has significantly changed the perspectives of Old Testament scholarship and has influenced the outlook and methods of biblical studies and related disciplines in the course of the last 50 years.

Van Seters, Thompson, Davies and Lemche will participate as key note speakers at the conference, which will include a number of papers within fields related to their achievements in Hellenistic studies, theories of composition, theories of history, anthropology, archaeology, Ancient Near Eastern religion and comparative literature, Dead Sea texts and cultural memory studies. The aim of the conference is to assess some of the major changes within the field of Old Testament scholarship, to investigate those changing perspectives within a broader context and to suggest future prospects of the discipline. Each participant is expected to present and discuss the challenge of these new perspectives for his or her core area of research.

Lectures will be 40 minutes for keynote speakers and 20 minutes for regular papers.

The opening lecture will be given by Prof. Jack Sasson, Vanderbilt University.

Papers will be published in A.K. de H. Gudme and I. Hjelm (eds.), Changing Perspectives in Old Testament Studies. Past, Present, and Future. International Conference at the University of Copenhagen, October 9-12, 2013 (CIS, Equinox).

It’s going to be fantastic fun.  As my paper comes together I’ll post snippets, but you’ll just have to wait for the Conference volume for the whole thing.

Cultural Memory in Biblical Exegesis

Coming soon from Gorgias Press

Cultural memory is a way of dealing with the past in social and cultural life. It transposes the notion of memory as individuals’ negotiation and representation of past experience into the collective and cultural area. Cultural memory is the shared reproduction and recalling of what has been learned and retained, normally treated as “the cultural heritage”. It also involves transformation and innovation. As opposed to individual memory, it brings social institutions and power to play. The notion of location and space (Landscape, ethnoscape, mental maps) is a major contributing factor in making the fragmented retrieved past a coherent whole. Cultural memories appear as palimpsests of material artifacts (including buildings and monuments), text, pictures and ritual practice. Especially relevant is the negotiation of cultural memory between local identity and global culture in this area. The purpose of this book is to study how memory is inscribed and embodied in biblical culture and its surrounding area. When dealing with a new field in research several questions appear, such as those dealing with previous approaches relevant for the cultural memory research: i.e. historiography, folklore, tradition history. We need to join forces to open new gates to cultural memory in biblical and cognate studies, and to include a plethora of methods and perspectives in present research. Such collaborative efforts will support the much needed reflection on the relationship between cultural memory approach and post-colonialism, globalism and epistemology.

Edited by Pernille Carstens
Edited by Trine Hasselbalch
Edited by Niels Peter Lemche
Contribution by Izaak Hulster
Contribution by Dolores Kamrada
Contribution by Rüdiger Schmitt
Contribution by Terje Stordalen
Contribution by David J. Chalcraft
Contribution by Sandra Hübenthal
Contribution by John Van Seters
Contribution by Ehud Ben Zvi
Contribution by Johannes Schnocks
Contribution by Emmanuel Nathan
Contribution by Ida Fröhlich
Contribution by Philip Davies

Changing Perspectives 1-4

Changing Perspectives I: Studies in the History, Literature and Religion of Biblical Israel, by John Van Seters with an Introduction by Thomas L. Thompson

This is a freshly published volume (just now out!) from the Copenhagen International Seminar Series which

… contains a collection of articles written over a 40 year period, from 1964 onwards. They are revisionist in character and address major issues in the understanding of Israelite and Judean history, the literary-critical analysis of the Pentateuch and historical books, and the nature of biblical religion. The historical studies were among the first to raise serious questions with the prevailing understanding of the “patriarchal age”, the accounts of the exodus from Egypt and the conquest of Canaan, and the temple of Solomon. The literary studies of the Pentateuch challenged both the classical Documentary Hypothesis, especially the early dating of J, and the more recent modifications that support the notion of an extensive Deuteronomistic redaction of the Pentateuch. Articles on biblical historiography focus on a late dating of the Court History of David, the nature of the Deuteronomistic history, and the role of creative imitation in the composition of biblical narrative. The final section on Israelite religion and culture views biblical notions about patriarchal religion, myths of human origin, and the legendary origins of Passover, within a broad comparative context. These articles have had a significant impact in the field of biblical studies.

Go to the link above for the complete table of contents.  And since I have the honor of being a series editor, let me commend it to you most heartily!

And, there are other volumes in the series ‘Changing Perspectives’ too.  Here’s IV, by Philip Davies.  And though not yet listed, Thomas Thompson also has a contribution in the series titled Changing Perspectives II (and I’m very familiar with it as I’m presently working on editing it) and Niels Peter Lemche’s III should appear sometime after II.