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In: Scripture in Transition
In: Congress Volume Ljubljana 2007
In: Congress Volume Helsinki 2010
In: Mighty Baal
This volume brings together the main contributions to the 20th congress of the International Organization for the Study of the Old Testament (IOSOT) held in Helsinki, Finland in August, 2010. The 24 articles discuss the following five topics: Archaeology and texts, with an emphasis on the Persian Period; Qumran, the Septuagint and the Textual History of the Hebrew Bible; Deuteronomistic texts, with a special focus on the question “What is ‘Deuteronomistic?’”; Wisdom and Apocalypticism; and methodological and interdisciplinary issues such as Bible and art and intertextuality. The volume gives readers an up-to-date view of the most recent developments in the research of these topics and the study of the Hebrew Bible in general.


The article explores the interface of prophecy and shamanhood from the point of view of intermediation, divination, and magic; performance and cosmology; gender; and social status. The most significant thing in common between prophets and shamans is the role of an intermediary and the superhuman authority ascribed to their activity. Other similarities include the performance in an altered state of consciousness, gender-inclusiveness, as well as some ritual roles and forms of social recognition. The action of the prophets rarely reaches beyond the transmission of the divine word, whereas the shamans’ activity is more strongly oriented towards ritual efficacy. The cosmological explanation of prophetic and shamanistic performance is different, and the transgendered roles of the shamans appear stronger. The social status varies according to the different community structures reflected by the source materials. It is argued that, even though the conceptual difference between prophets and shamans should be upheld, there is a strong interface between the two phenomena.

In: Vetus Testamentum
Contributors: and
Prophecy was a widespread phenomenon, not only in ancient Israel but in the ancient Near East as a whole. This is the first book to gather the available ancient Near Eastern, extrabiblical sources containing prophetic words or references to prophetic activities. Among the 140 texts included in this volume are oracles of prophets, personal letters, formal inscriptions, and administrative documents from ancient Mesopotamia and Levant from the second and first millennia BCE. Most of the texts come from Mari (eighteenth century BCE) and Assyria (seventh century BCE). In addition, the volume provides new translations of the relevant section of the Egyptian Report of Wenamon, by Robert K. Ritner, and of various texts from Syria-Palestine containing allusions to prophets and prophetic activities, by C. L. Seow. By collecting and presenting evidence of the activities of prophets and the phenomenon of prophecy from all over the ancient Near East, the volume illumines the cultural background of biblical prophecy and its parallels. It provides scholars of the history, religions, and cultural traditions of the ancient Near East with important information about different types and forms of transmission of divine words, and makes these valuable primary source materials accessible to students and general readers in contemporary English along with transcriptions of the original languages, indexes, and an extensive bibliography.

Paperback edition is available from the Society of Biblical Literature (
In: The Aramaeans in Ancient Syria