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Document Type:Latin Dissertation
Language of Document:English
Record Number:55582
Doc. No:TL25536
Call number:‭3305104‬
Main Entry:Jessica N. Whisenant
Title & Author:Writing, literacy, and textual transmission: The production of literary documents in Iron Age Judah and the composition of the Hebrew BibleJessica N. Whisenant
College:University of Michigan
Date:2008
Degree:Ph.D.
student score:2008
Page No:387
Abstract:The Iron Age has long been pinpointed by biblical scholars as the period during which the earliest versions of several texts now preserved in the Hebrew bible were composed in Judah. This study finds that the epigraphic evidence can support the latter half of the Iron II period (late eighth through early sixth centuries BCE) as the context for significant Judean literacy, as well as for the presence of archives. An analysis of the comparative materials from the ANE world and ancient Greece, as well as the specifically Levantine material dating to the Bronze and Iron Ages, identifies a subset of the elite, the scribes, as the individuals who had the most direct hand in the process of written transmission. This project proposes that Judah's scribes were profoundly influenced by the transmission from Israel of Phoenician-Samarian scribal conventions and expertise, and argues that the proliferation of texts in Judah was connected to the expanding number of Judean scribes over the course of the Iron II period. The intensification of scribal activity instigated a process whereby the compiling of specifically Yahwistic incantations and theophanies was gradually being decentralized. The collection of texts addressed to Yahweh, the patron deity of Jerusalem's royal dynasty, suggests a state-directed initiative designed to unite the region around a single royal dynasty and single cultic tradition. The Levantine data also points to the involvement of Judah's scribes in the gathering and collecting of oracles, for re-use in royal monumental inscriptions and in literary inscriptions displayed in prominent locations to function as political critiques against other states. To support the state hegemonic project, Judah's royal scribes also may have combined different sources into one historical account, which would most likely have been a chronicle. These different sources would have included oracles from archival copies of collected prophecies, monumental inscriptions and king lists, and prior literary works in the scribal tradition. This study therefore argues against the prevailing opinion of biblical scholarship by positing the creation of source documents for the Hebrew bible during the Iron II period, and not early versions of the biblical texts themselves.
Subject:Social sciences; Language, literature and linguistics; Ancient literacy; Hebrew Bible; Inscriptions; Iron Age; Iron Age Judah; Israelite; Israelite inscriptions; Judah; Judean; Judean literacy; Levantine; Levantine inscriptions; Levantine literacy; Literary documents; Ancient languages; Archaeology; Middle Eastern history; 0289:Ancient languages; 0324:Archaeology; 0333:Middle Eastern history
Added Entry:B. B. Schmidt
Added Entry:University of Michigan