Cover image for Images of Others: Iconic Politics in Ancient Israel By Nathaniel Levtow

Images of Others

Iconic Politics in Ancient Israel

Nathaniel Levtow

BUY

$47.50 | Hardcover Edition
ISBN: 978-1-57506-146-7

6" × 9"

Biblical and Judaic Studies from the University of California, San Diego

Images of Others

Iconic Politics in Ancient Israel

Nathaniel Levtow

In this volume, Nathaniel Levtow articulately interacts with Mesopotamian and Israelite iconoclastic traditions, locating Israelite polemics against cult images among a spectrum of ancient West Asian literary genres and ritual practices that target the embodied deities of political opponents. Levtow argues that Israelite parodies of Mesopotamian iconic cult were not unique expressions of aniconic monotheism but assertions of Israelite political potency during and shortly after the Babylonian Exile. By interpreting Israelite icon parodies in this context, Levtow rejects the idea of “idolatry” as a static, native Israelite descriptive category and highlights the ability of Israelite writers to compose authoritative classifications of cult that profoundly influenced ancient and modern understandings of iconic worship practices. He concludes that biblical representations of iconic cult reveal dynamic acts of Israelite social formation and exemplify the enduring power of the cult image in ancient West Asian societies.

 

  • Description
  • Table of Contents
In this volume, Nathaniel Levtow articulately interacts with Mesopotamian and Israelite iconoclastic traditions, locating Israelite polemics against cult images among a spectrum of ancient West Asian literary genres and ritual practices that target the embodied deities of political opponents. Levtow argues that Israelite parodies of Mesopotamian iconic cult were not unique expressions of aniconic monotheism but assertions of Israelite political potency during and shortly after the Babylonian Exile. By interpreting Israelite icon parodies in this context, Levtow rejects the idea of “idolatry” as a static, native Israelite descriptive category and highlights the ability of Israelite writers to compose authoritative classifications of cult that profoundly influenced ancient and modern understandings of iconic worship practices. He concludes that biblical representations of iconic cult reveal dynamic acts of Israelite social formation and exemplify the enduring power of the cult image in ancient West Asian societies.

Acknowledgments

Abbreviations

General

Reference Works

Introduction

Interpretive Traditions:

Idolatry, Dualism, Monotheism, Aniconism

Redescribing Israelite Parodies of Iconic Cult

1. Rites and Writing in Ancient Israel

Ritual and Power

Classification

Social Formation

2. Israelite Icon Parodies

An Innovative Genre of the Exilic Age

Jeremiah 10:1–16

The Icon Parodies of Second Isaiah

Psalms 115 and 135

Literary History, Social History, and Interpretive Power

Classification and Social Formation

3. Mesopotamian Iconic Ritual

The Mesopotamian Cult Image: Ancient Evidence and Modern Interpretations

The Induction of the Cult Image in Mesopotamia: The Mis Pî Ritual

Iconic Aspects of Mesopotamian

Warfare and Historiography

The Enthronement of the Supreme Deity

Mesopotamian Iconic Politics and Israelite Icon Parodies

4. Iconic Politics in Ancient Israel

Iconic Traditions in the Hebrew Bible

The Ark Narrative

Deuteronomistic Iconic Political Discourse

Ezekiel and the Departure of Yahweh

Israelite Aniconism or Israelite Iconic Politics?

Conclusion

Classification and Cult

Bibliography

Indexes

Index of Authors

Index of Scripture

Index of Other Ancient Sources

Index of Topics

Mailing List

Subscribe to our mailing list and be notified about new titles, journals and catalogs.