Abstract

This paper evaluates the attitudes toward the contemporary Jerusalem priesthood and cult on evidence in the Visions of Amram. To the extent that this issue has been treated, scholars have generally argued that the Visions of Amram originated among groups that were hostile to the Aaronid priesthood. Such treatments, however, have left some of the most germane fragments unexamined, several of which deal directly with matters pertaining to the cult, Aaron, and his offspring (4Q547 5 1–3; 8 2–4; 9 5–7; 4Q545 4 16–19). My study incorporates these fragments into the larger discussion, and in so doing demonstrates that many of the views expressed in the secondary literature require revision. My analysis shows that, though the social location of the Visions of Amram is difficult to determine, we should not be too quick to dismiss the possibility that the writer was a supporter of the contemporary status quo in the temple, given the elevated status afforded to both Aaron and his eternal posterity throughout the text.

In: Dead Sea Discoveries
The Textual History of the Bible (THB) brings together for the first time all available information regarding the manuscripts, textual history and character of each book of the Hebrew Bible and its translations as well as the deuterocanonical scriptures. In addition, THB covers the history of research, the editorial history of the Hebrew Bible, as well as other aspects of text-critical research and its subsidiary fields, such as papyrology, codicology, and the related discipline of linguistics. The THB will consist of 4 volumes.

Volume 2: Deuterocanonical Scriptures. Editors Matthias Henze and Frank Feder
Vol. 2A: overview articles
Vol. 2B: to Ezra
Vol. 2C: Jubilees to 16 Appendix
Experiments in Empathy
The editors of Experiments in Empathy: Critical Reflections on Interreligious Education have assembled a volume that spans multiple religious traditions and offers innovative methods for teaching and designing interreligious learning. This groundbreaking text includes established interreligious educators and emerging scholars who expand the vision of this field to include critical studies, decolonial approaches and exciting pedagogical developments.

The book includes voices that are often left out of other comparative theology or interreligious education texts. Scholars from evangelical, Muslim, Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, religiously hybrid and other background enrich the existing models for interreligious classrooms. The book is particularly relevant at a time when religion is so often harnessed for division and hatred. By examining the roots of racism, xenophobia, sexism and their interaction with religion that contribute to inequity the volume offers real world educational interventions. The content is in high demand as are the authors who contributed to the volume.

Contributors are: Scott Alexander, Judith A. Berling, Monica A. Coleman, Reuven Firestone, Christine Hong, Jennifer Howe Peace, Munir Jiwa, Nancy Fuchs Kreimer, Tony Ritchie, Rachel Mikva, John Thatanamil, Timur Yuskaev.
Literary Constructions of Inclusion, Exclusion, and Self-Definition (1756–1871)
Though the German Nation State was only founded in 1871, the German nation had been imagined long before it ever took political shape. Covering the period from the Seven Years’ War to the foundation of the German nation, Nationalism before the Nation State: Literary Constructions of Inclusion, Exclusion, and Self-Definition (1756–1871) explores how the nation was imagined by different groups, at different times, and in connection with other ideologies. Between them the eight chapters in this volume explore the connections between religion, nationalism and patriotism, and individual chapters show how marginalised voices such as women and Jews contributed to discourses on national identity. Finally, the chapters also consider the role of memory in constructing ideas of nationhood.

Contributors are: Johannes Birgfeld, Anita Bunyan, Dirk Göttsche, Caroline Mannweiler, Alex Marshall, Dagmar Paulus, Ellen Pilsworth, and Ernest Schonfield.
Targum Chronicles and Its Place Among the Late Targums heralds a paradigm shift in the understanding of many of the Jewish-Aramaic translations of individual biblical books and their origins. Leeor Gottlieb provides the most extensive study of Targum Chronicles to date, leading to conclusions that challenge long-accepted truisms with regard to the origin of Targums. This book’s trail of evidence convincingly points to the composition of Targums in a time and place that was heretofore not expected to be the provenance of these Aramaic gems of biblical interpretation. This study also offers detailed comparisons to other Targums and fascinating new explanations for dozens of aggadic expansions in Targum Chronicles, tying them to their rabbinic sources.
Israelis in Berlin and Toronto
In Pillars of Salt, Lianne Merkur offers an account of early 21st century immigration as experienced by Israelis in Berlin and Toronto. Commonly portrayed as contrary to the territorial emphasis of national integrity, these individuals and communities appear to explore a sense of belonging that evaluates and incorporates both foreign and familiar elements. Social media allows for an alternative space to balance between new home and homeland, studied here as developing simultaneously in multiple sites. The author makes use of innovative methodologies to document the participants’ own perspectives expressed online, at events or on paper. She thereby challenges established norms of interpretation to prove that personal decisions, primarily regarding preferred language or simply self-identification, are the cornerstones of collective character.

Abstract

This paper considers the sectarian construction of masculinity as it pertains to the emotion of anger. The hegemonic masculinity in antiquity reserves legitimate expressions of anger for men. Sectarian anger, which is a hierarchical emotion bound up in power relations, likewise reflects the sectarian conception of masculinity.

The sect’s view of anger approximates Aristotle’s insistence that anger should be limited to certain circumstances and in relation to certain people. Intra-sectarian anger is inappropriate because it endangers the spirit of love or respect for high-status members that should characterize sectarian relations. Anger toward outsiders, however, is not only permitted but expected. The sect’s awareness of the coming “day of vengeance” demands that they align themselves with God by passing judgment on the sinner. By properly calibrating their manliness through the emotion of anger, the sect navigates a fine line between assertions of power and an acknowledgement that their power ultimately is attributable to God.

In: Dead Sea Discoveries

Abstract

The Babatha archive contains thirty-five legal papyri dating from 94 to 132 CE. They belonged to a Judean woman Babatha, from Maoza on the south-eastern shore of the Dead Sea, where date cultivation was a valuable cash crop. The Salome Komaïse archive, also concerning a family of date farmers from Maoza, consists of six papyri dated from 29 January 125 to 7 August 131. Both archives were deposited by their owners in the same cave in Wadi Ḥever at the end of the Bar Kokhba revolt. Maoza formed part of Nabatea until the kingdom became the Roman province of Arabia in 106. These papyri provide a rich array of evidence relating to the life of Babatha, Salome Komaïse and her mother Salome Grapte, and of other women, Judean and Nabatean, in this context. Particularly noteworthy is that women possessed considerable wealth, in cash and real property, and regularly acted as business-women, including by loans to their husbands. The papyri also reveal seizure of assets and frequent recourse to litigation by these women in defence of their rights. Although this was a patrilineal and patrilocal culture, the papyri provide striking examples of potent female agency, as women deployed and protected their wealth by every legal means.

In: Dead Sea Discoveries

Abstract

This article provides background and context for the ensuing contributions in this special journal edition, the focus of which is gender studies and the Dead Sea Scrolls. While the discovery and study of the Scrolls has certainly revolutionized Biblical Studies, the study of the Scrolls is nevertheless often perceived and treated as a subsidiary, even marginalized, field of Biblical Studies, rather than as either an integral part thereof, or as a discipline in its own right. This article aims to highlight how gender has been studied with reference to the Bible. Subsequent contributions demonstrate how gender is shaping interpretations of the Scrolls.

In: Dead Sea Discoveries

Abstract

To understand purity from both the male and the female perspective within the Qumran ‎communities, this article will be using 4QTohorot A (4Q274) as a case study to: review the formation and function of gender within the manuscript; permit a broadening of the critique of purity to include a range of gender ‎issues; enable a discussion of the position of women in relation to ‎female purification laws; and permit exploration of the male perspective and ‎experience from a masculinist perspective. ‎By concentrating on the ‎functionality of this particular scroll, further insights will be gained to understand the gendered ‎and identity politics at play behind such strict purity regulations in order to discern—and to ‎imagine—what it actually meant to be a constant threat of potential pollution within ‎communities where purity ruled all aspects of everyday life, and how such regulations worked on a gendered ‎level.

In: Dead Sea Discoveries