Tracing Sapiential Traditions in Ancient Judaism


This volume is intended to problematize and challenge current conceptions of the category of “Wisdom” and to reconsider the scope, breadth and Nachleben of ancient Jewish sapiential traditions. It considers the formal features and conceptual underpinnings of wisdom throughout the corpus of the Hebrew Bible, the Dead Sea Scrolls, Hellenistic Jewish texts, Rabbinic texts, and the Cairo Geniza. It also situates ancient Jewish Wisdom in its Near Eastern context, as well as in the context of Hellenistic conceptions of the Sage.

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Hindy Najman, PhD (1998) Harvard, is the Oriel and Laing Professor of Scriptural Interpretation in Oriel College at the University of Oxford. She has published extensively on biblical interpretation, history of biblical scholarship, revelation and wisdom. Among her books are Seconding Sinai (2003),Past Renewals (2010) and Losing the Temple and Recovering the Future (2014).

Jean-Sébastien Rey, PhD (2006) Strasbourg and Leuven, is Professor of Exegesis at the Lorraine University in Metz, France. He is director of the Revue de Qumrân and his fields of research are the Dead Sea Scrolls and the sapiential literature of the Hellenistic Period.

Eibert Tigchelaar, PhD (1994) Groningen, is research professor Biblical Studies at the KU Leuven, and specializes in the Dead Sea Scrolls and Early Judaism. He is editor of the Journal for the Study of Judaism, and co-editor of the Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition.

Contributors are: Stuart Weeks, James Kugel, Stéphanie Anthonioz, Elisa Uusimäki, Benjamin G. Wright, Samuel L. Adams, Arjen Bakker, Matthew Goff, Patrick Pouchelle, Maurice Gilbert, Ishay Rosen-Zvi, Gideon Bohak.
Hindy Najman, Jean-Sébastien Rey and Eibert Tigchelaar

Is “Wisdom Literature” a Useful Category?
Stuart Weeks

The Theme of Long-Range Planning in the Joseph Narrative and Some Second Temple Period Writings
James Kugel

A Reflection on the Nature of Wisdom From Psalm 1 to Mesopotamian Traditions
Stéphanie Anthonioz

Spiritual Formation in Hellenistic Jewish Wisdom Teaching
Elisa Uusimäki

Ben Sira and Hellenistic Literature in Greek
Benjamin G. Wright III

Sage as Prophet? Allusion and Reconfiguration in Ben Sira and Other Second Temple Wisdom Texts
Samuel L. Adams

Sages and Saints: Continuous Study and Transformation in Musar le-Mevin and Serekh ha-Yaḥad
Arjen Bakker

Searching for Wisdom in and beyond 4QInstruction
Matthew Goff

The Simple Bare Necessities: Is Pss. Sol. 5 a Wisdom Prayer?
Patrick Pouchelle

Pirqé Avot and Wisdom Tradition
Maurice Gilbert, S. J.

The Wisdom Tradition in Rabbinic Literature and Mishnah Avot
Ishay Rosen-Zvi

Manuals of Mantic Wisdom: From the Dead Sea Scrolls to the Cairo Genizah
Gideon Bohak

Index of Ancient Sources
Index of Authors
All interested in the literature and thought of Ancient Judaism, and anyone concerned with sapiential literature within and beyond the Bible.
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