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Soundings in Kings

Perspectives and Methods in Contemporary Scholarship

By Klaus-Peter Adam and Mark Leuchter

Publication Year: 2010

The reigning assumptions in 1970s and 1980s scholarship on 1 and 2 Kings, and indeed on all of the Deuteronomistic history, have come under serious question. How can differing views of that history be reconciled? What sources were available to the authors? Should we call them "authors"? How well do the Books of Kings fit into the larger history of which they are a part; just who composed that history, toward what end, and in what context? How do the assumptions of contemporary interpreters influence the answers we give to those questions? In Soundings in Kings, international scholars pursue these and related questions by examining 1 and 2 Kings as an independent work, identifying new methods and models for envisioning the social location of the authors (or redactors) of Kings, the nature of the intended audience or audiences, and the political and rhetorical implications of its construction. Soundings in Kings demonstrates the role of Kings as a cornerstone work within the Hebrew Bible, a crossroads between prophecy, poetry, wisdom, ancestral and national narrative, and ritual instruction.

Published by: Augsburg Fortress Publishers

Cover

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p. 1-1

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. i-iv

Contents

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pp. v-vi

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Preface

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pp. vii-viii

...This volume began in a conversation during the 2005 Annual Meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature in Philadelphia. Following a session of papers in the Deuteronomistic History section, Klaus-Peter Adam and I gathered with several other scholars who had presented papers to address what we recognized to be a growing problem. Namely: there was great disagreement whether the hypothesis of a Deuteronomistic...

Contributors

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pp. ix-x

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Introduction

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pp. 1-12

...F or many years, the book of Kings was taken to be a record of events in the life of ancient Israel during the period of the monarchy that revealed in an unencumbered way the deeds of the kings, the complaints of the prophets, and the intervention of divine forces into political affairs when punishment was due. In more recent times, though, researchers have approached the study of the book of Kings from a variety of perspectives that have moved beyond a basic reading of the text...

Part One: Sources and Transmission

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1. Text and Literary History: The Case of 1 Kings 19(MT and LXX)

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pp. 15-34

...The context of my paper is the question of the relationship between text criticism and redaction criticism: how can text history contribute to a better knowledge of the literary development of the books of Kings? The discoveries of the Dead Sea Scrolls profoundly renewed the knowledge of the most ancient transmission of the biblical text and, in particular, of the place that the Septuagint...

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2. Warfare and Treaty Formulas in the Background of Kings

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pp. 35-68

...About two decades ago, Helga Weippert concluded that the hope “of finding the key to the overall understanding of the Deuteronomistic History (DH) [focuses] especially on the Book of Kings.” One of the reasons for this was that the Deuteronomistic (Dtr) phraseological framework in Kings was thought to be relatively easy to separate from its source parts...

Part Two: Prophecy and Redaction

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3. Prophetess of Doom: Hermeneutical Reflectionson the Huldah Oracle (2 Kings 22)

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pp. 71-80

...the book of Kings has been considered by German scholarship to be, to a large extent, the literary contiguous work of a single author, who by using older source material crafted it around the middle of the sixth century bce as an integral part of a larger narrative contained within the books of Deuteronomy to 2 Kings. Noth maintained the theological leitmotif, which constitutes the internal cohesion...

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4. Hezekiah, Manasseh, and Dynastic or Transgenerational Punishment

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pp. 81-106

...This essay addresses the issue of why Dtr blames Manasseh by examining what Dtr would look like without the passages that blame him. Rather than revisiting the various well-known redactional proposals for Dtr, we simply ask the hypothetical question: who would Dtr blame for the two Babylonian exiles if we remove 2 Kgs 21:10-15, 23:26-27, and 24:3-4 from the rest of the text...

Part Three: Authors and Audiences

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5. The Redaction of Kings and Priestly Authority in Jerusalem

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pp. 109-118

...There has been renewed interest in the compositional history of Kings as researchers have become increasingly aware of the inadequacies of Noth’s theory of a Deuteronomistic History to account for this material’s redactional complexity and ideological diversity...

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6. The Sociolinguistic and Rhetorical Implications of the Source Citations in Kings

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pp. 119-134

...Most researchers working with the texts of Kings recognize that the author of the book did not compose his work ex nihilo, though there is little consensus regarding the nature of the sources he employed. Scholars who see Kings as an exilic or Persian period composition more often see oral tradition and mimetic elements at work...

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Response: Kings Resisting Privilege

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pp. 135-142

...The following response to five of these six chapters on aspects of the book of Kings is offered unashamedly from the perspective of proposals I have already published in a couple of volumes:1 how far are these essays convergent with my proposals, how far do they require me to rethink, and how far do I find that they offer me likely ways forward...

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Closing Remarks

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pp. 143-146

...From the sampling of perspectives in the present volume, a few notable issues emerge in relation to the study of the book of Kings. First and foremost, it is abundantly clear that Kings, while remaining a parade example of historiography from the ancient world, is by no means a work of history. The method of the transfer from sources to finished narrative and the thematic emphases...

Abbreviations

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pp. 147-150

Notes

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pp. 151-206

Author Index

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pp. 207-210

Scripture Index

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pp. 211-223


E-ISBN-13: 9781451412635
E-ISBN-10: 1451412630
Print-ISBN-13: 9780800697167
Print-ISBN-10: 0800697162

Page Count: 232
Publication Year: 2010

Series Title: Soundings: Charting the Currents of Contemporary Scholarship
Series Editor Byline: