In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

142 SHOFAR Spring 1994 Vol. 12, No.3 is quite typical of Kings and, significantly, stands at the only place it could have stood in that book. From the point of view of Kings, it is much more likely that its presence requires account B than the reverse. The thesis that A is a secondary insertion in Kings is more a requirement of Seitz's hypothesis (or perhaps that of a Hezekianic edition of Kings) than a critical answer to issues brought about by account A itself. Insofar as it concerns Deutero-Isaiah, Seitz does not address the presence in that material of substantial themes that are clearly absent in Proto-Isaiah (for a recent work on these see R. J. Clifford, "The Unity of the Book of Isaiah and Its Cosmogonic Language," CBQ 55 [1993], pp. 1-17). Because of Seitz's emphasis on Hezekiah and the Davidic dynasty, at least, a study of the description of Cyrus (rather than a Davidic scion) as God's king was expected. In addition, it is worth noting that the identification of the servant with Zion can hold only if the latter is identified with Israel, or some figure or group representative of Israel (see Isa 49:3). Seitz fails to present a convincing and thorough argument supporting such an identification. In spite of the reservations mentioned above, this reviewer considers Seitz's work to be an important contribution to the understanding of the Hezekiah-Isaiah narratives and to the development of the Book of Isaiah as a whole. Seitz has done an important service to the scholarly community by consistently questioning accepted and acceptable positions in modern research. Whether readers of this book will be convinced by most, some, or only a few of Seitz's arguments, they will certainly be thankful to him for causing them to engage in an exciting critical re-appraisal of long-held positions. Ehud Ben Zvi Department of Religious Studies University of Alberta The Unity of the Hebrew Bible, by David Noel Freedman. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1991. 125 pp. $22.95. David Noel Freedman is Arthur F. Thurnau Professor of Biblical Studies in the Department of Near Eastern Studies at the University of Michigan. Trained under the eminent archaeologist and linguist, William F. Albright, Freedman has enjoyed a long and illustrious career as a respected biblical scholar. The small volume under review is a published Book Reviews 143 version of what was delivered in March 1988 as lectures in the Distinguished Senior Faculty Lecture Series at the University of Michigan. In his preface Freedman states his purpose: "to reconstruct or describe a rational process by which the admittedly varied and disparate materials in the Bible were consciously and purposefully put together into a complete work by a compiler or an editor working either alone or with a small group of advisers." Considering his task from another vantage point, that of his chosen title The Unity of the Hebrew Bible, we gather that he will seek to determine what constitutes the common elements which bind into a unity the quite different works ofvarious authors writing at different times and under a wide range ofsocial and political conditions. In his preface the author also adduces his reasons for restricting the "Bible" to the traditional]ewish Hebrew corpus, consisting ofthe Law, the Prophets (Former and Latter), and the Writings. The original audience for the lectures was an academic one. The hearers were well educated persons, most of whom were professionally engaged in research and/or teaching, although for most their knowledge of the Hebrew Bible, or even of an English translation of the same, might well have been quite limited. One senses an awareness of this limited acquaintance with the subject on the part of the author, even in the version revised for print. He proceeds very slowly and methodically through the most basic of concepts, such as "What do we mean by the word Bible? What writings should be included in this corpus?" A part of me welcomes such an approach, even though my own training long ago advanced beyond this stage. It reveals a considerate and urbane person, eager to communicate to the...


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 142-145
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.