The History of Ancient Israel: What Directions Should we Take?


in Understanding the History of Ancient Israel

Published by British Academy

Published in print October 2007 | ISBN: 9780197264010
Published online February 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191734946 | DOI:

Series: Proceedings of the British Academy

The History of Ancient Israel: What Directions Should we Take?

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There can be little doubt about the enormous importance of the work of Fernand Braudel and the French Annales tradition for the academic study of history. Together with its many ramifications, the Annales ‘school’ constitutes what is known today as the (French) ‘New History’. In France, the scientific nature of history was never really doubted. History formed (as it does today) a part of the social sciences. For this reason, Braudel stressed the necessity of using empirical data, often quantifiable, to be able to identify the structures underlying social and cultural phenomena. Later, this was referred to as histoire sérielle. The reason why Annales should be considered in some detail in the present context is that some biblical researchers have claimed that the Braudel heritage may be useful for the study of the history of ancient Israel. Knowledge of climate, biology, geography, population movements, and economic trends in Palestine during the Iron Age is relevant to the student of the history of ancient Israel.

Keywords: Fernand Braudel; France; Annales; ancient Israel; history; social sciences; Palestine; Iron Age

Chapter.  11112 words. 

Subjects: Biblical Studies

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