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The Formation of the Hebrew Bible

David M. Carr

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199742608
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199918737 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199742608.001.0001
The Formation of the Hebrew Bible

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This book rethinks both the methods and historical orientation points for research into the growth of the Hebrew Bible. Building on his prior work, Writing on the Tablet of the Heart (Oxford, 2005), the author explores the possibilities and limits of reconstruction of pre-stages of the Bible. The method advocated is a “methodologically modest” investigation of those pre-stages, utilizing criteria and models derived from the author’s survey of documented examples of textual revision in the Ancient Near East. The result is a new picture of the Bible’s formation, with insights on the emergence of Hebrew literary textuality, the development of the first Hexateuch, and the final formation of the Hebrew Bible. Where some have advocated dating the bulk of the Hebrew Bible in a single period, whether relatively early (Neo-Assyrian) or late (Persian or Hellenistic), the author uncovers evidence that the Hebrew Bible contains texts dating across Israelite history, even the early pre-exilic period (10th-9th centuries) where many recent studies have been hesitant to date substantial portions of the Bible. He traces the impact of Neo-Assyrian imperialism on eighth and seventh century Israelite textuality, uses studies of collective trauma to identify marks of the reshaping and collection of traditions in response to the destruction of Jerusalem and Babylonian exile, develops a picture of varied Priestly reshaping of narrative and prophetic traditions in the Second Temple period, and uses manuscript evidence from Qumran and the Septuagint to reveal the final literary reshaping that produced the proto-Masoretic text.

Keywords: Hebrew Bible; trauma; textuality; Jerusalem; Babylon; Qumran; Hexateuch; Septuagint; Second Temple period

Book.  544 pages. 

Subjects: Biblical Studies

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Table of Contents

Introduction in The Formation of the Hebrew Bible

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Documented Cases of Transmission History, Part 1 in The Formation of the Hebrew Bible

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Documented Cases of Transmission History, Part 2 in The Formation of the Hebrew Bible

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The Hasmonean Period in The Formation of the Hebrew Bible

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The Persian Period in The Formation of the Hebrew Bible

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The Babylonian Exile in The Formation of the Hebrew Bible

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Bible for Exiles in The Formation of the Hebrew Bible

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