Journal Article

Crypto-Minimalism

Philip Davies

in Journal of Semitic Studies

Published on behalf of University of Manchester

Volume 50, issue 1, pages 117-136
Published in print January 2005 | ISSN: 0022-4480
Published online January 2005 | e-ISSN: 1477-8556 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jss/fgi006
Crypto-Minimalism

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Two recent books by William Dever attempt to ‘correct’ the ‘abuse of archaeology’ by ‘revisionists’ and to establish that archaeology can illuminate the ‘real’ history of ancient Israel. But while caricaturing the work of ‘revisionists’ Dever in fact largely follows their methods and conclusions without acknowledgement. Where he departs from these, he lapses into a naïve version of ‘biblical archaeology’ — which he also criticizes. His attempt to elevate the merits of archaeology and archaeologists over biblical studies and its practitioners also obliges him to ‘revise’ the less than glorious role that archaeologists have played in the last fifty years by resisting major advances in our understanding of ancient Israelite history.

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Subjects: Middle Eastern History ; Middle Eastern Languages ; Literary Studies - World ; Biblical Studies

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