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What if the Hebrew Bible wasn't meant to be read as “revelation”? What if it's not really about miracles or the afterlife – but about how to lead our lives in this world? The Philosophy of Hebrew Scripture proposes a new framework for reading the Bible. It shows how biblical authors used narrative and prophetic oratory to advance universal arguments about ethics, political philosophy, and metaphysics. It offers bold new studies of biblical narratives and prophetic poetry, transforming forever our understanding of what the stories of Abel, Abraham, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, and David, and the speeches of Isaiah and Jeremiah, were meant to teach. The Philosophy of Hebrew Scripture assumes no belief in God or other religious commitment. It assumes no previous background in Bible. It is free of disciplinary jargon. Open the door to a book you never knew existed. You'll never read the Bible the same way again.Read more
- Offers a new framework for reading the Bible
- Provides a series of bold new studies of biblical narratives and prophetic orations
- An interdisciplinary work accessible to philosophers, political theorists, intellectual historians, Bible scholars, theologians and educated readers of all backgrounds
Reviews & endorsements
"A deep and lucid investigation of the connections between the two chief strands of our intellectual history. A great achievement."
Steven Pinker, Harvard College Professor of Psychology, Harvard University, and author of How the Mind Works and The Better Angels of our NatureSee more reviews
"A paradigm-shifting work of immense significance."
Lord Jonathan Sacks, Chief Rabbi of the British Commonwealth
"Hazony is on a mission to put the greatest book on earth at the heart of academic study … [He] is a modern-day Jerusalem shepherd who is challenging authority - and has no idea how things will turn out."
David Suissa, Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles
"His argument is … provocative: the Hebrew Bible does not conform to the commonly accepted dichotomy of reason versus revelation … Rewarding for biblical studies or philosophy insiders who are receptive to new ideas."
"… a bracing intellectual adventure."
Alan Mittleman, The Jewish Theological Seminary
"Hazony does not write simply to persuade us to agree or disagree with his interpretation of any particular story. Reviewers who think so do him an injustice. Instead, Hazony wants to persuade us that to read the Bible is to engage in a necessary argument over how to build a good society."
Diana Muir Appelbaum, Jewish Ideas Daily
"First, Hazony's work is an important contribution to understanding the dynamic of the biblical story of Cain and Abel. Second, Hazony's argument is important for understanding not just Genesis 4 but as a radical critique of the general understanding of the entire Hebrew Bible."
Steven D. Ealy, Books and Culture
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- Date Published: July 2012
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9780521176675
- length: 286 pages
- dimensions: 235 x 155 x 20 mm
- weight: 0.56kg
- contains: 1 b/w illus.
- availability: Temporarily unavailable - available from TBC
Table of Contents
1. Introduction: beyond reason and revelation
Part I: Reading Hebrew Scripture:
2. The structure of the Hebrew Bible
3. What is the purpose of the Hebrew Bible?
4. How does the Bible make arguments of a general nature?
Part II: The Philosophy of Hebrew Scripture: Five Studies:
5. The ethics of a shepherd
6. The history of Israel, Genesis-Kings: a political philosophy
7. Jeremiah and the problem of knowing
8. Truth and being in Hebrew scripture
9. Jerusalem and Carthage
Part III: Conclusion:
10. God's speech after reason and revelation.
Instructors have used or reviewed this title for the following courses
- A panoramic view of the Middle East
- Bible and its environment
- Biblical Judaism: Texts and Thought
- Biblical Perspectives
- Comparative Religion
- Contemporary Jewish Thought
- Foundations of Jewish Thought
- Great Living Religions: Judaism and Islam
- Hebrew Bible
- Hebrew Prophets
- Hebrew Scriptures
- History of the Jewish People I
- Intro the Hebrew Bible
- Intro to the Bible
- Introduction to Hebrew Bible/Old Testament
- Introduction to Judaism/ Ethics and Theology of the Rabbis
- Introduction to the TANAKH
- Lit. of the Hebrew Bible
- Modern Jewish Literature
- Modern Religious Thought
- OT Survey
- Old Testament 301 (Genesis-1 Samuel)
- Old Testament Religion
- Prophetic Literature
- Prophets and Visionaries
- Religious Foundations and the Bible
- Seminar in Biblical Literature
- Senior Theological Research Project
- Survey of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament
- The Hebrew Bible
- The Old Testament
- The Rabbis' Bible
- Topics in Philosophy of Value
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