Cover image for The Right Chorale: Studies in Biblical Law and Interpretation By Bernard M. Levinson

The Right Chorale

Studies in Biblical Law and Interpretation

Bernard M. Levinson

BUY

$49.50 | Paperback Edition
ISBN: 978-1-57506-210-5

456 pages
6" × 9"
2008

The Right Chorale

Studies in Biblical Law and Interpretation

Bernard M. Levinson

This book presents twelve selected investigations of textual composition, interpretation, revision, and transmission. With these studies, Bernard Levinson draws on the literary forebears of biblical law in cuneiform literature and its reinterpretation in the Second Temple period to provide the horizon of ancient Israelite legal exegesis. The volume makes a sustained argument about the nature of textuality in ancient Israel: Israelite scribes were sophisticated readers, authors, and thinkers who were conscious of their place in literary and intellectual history, even as they sought to renew and transform their cultural patrimony in significant ways. Originally published over a decade and a half, the significantly revised and updated studies gathered here explore the connections between law and narrative, show the close connections between Deuteronomy and the Neo-Assyrian loyalty oath tradition, address the literary relationship of Deuteronomy and the Covenant Code, reflect on important questions of methodology, and explore the contributions of the Bible to later Western intellectual history. The volume offers essential reading for an understanding of the Pentateuch and biblical law.

 

  • Description
  • Table of Contents
This book presents twelve selected investigations of textual composition, interpretation, revision, and transmission. With these studies, Bernard Levinson draws on the literary forebears of biblical law in cuneiform literature and its reinterpretation in the Second Temple period to provide the horizon of ancient Israelite legal exegesis. The volume makes a sustained argument about the nature of textuality in ancient Israel: Israelite scribes were sophisticated readers, authors, and thinkers who were conscious of their place in literary and intellectual history, even as they sought to renew and transform their cultural patrimony in significant ways. Originally published over a decade and a half, the significantly revised and updated studies gathered here explore the connections between law and narrative, show the close connections between Deuteronomy and the Neo-Assyrian loyalty oath tradition, address the literary relationship of Deuteronomy and the Covenant Code, reflect on important questions of methodology, and explore the contributions of the Bible to later Western intellectual history. The volume offers essential reading for an understanding of the Pentateuch and biblical law.

Part I. Setting the Agenda: Why Biblical Law Matters

1. “The Right Chorale:” From the Poetics of Biblical Narrative to the Hermeneutics of the Hebrew Bible

2. The Seductions of the Garden and the Genesis of Hermeneutics as Critique

3. The Sinai Covenant: The Argument of Revelation

4. Deuteronomy’s Conception of Law as an “Ideal Type”: A Missing Chapter in the History of Constitutional Law

Part II. The Paradigm of Legal Hermeneutics: Close Studies and Test Cases

5. The “Effected Object” in Contractual Legal Language: The Semantics of “If You Purchase a Hebrew Slave” (Exodus 21:2)

6. Textual Criticism, Assyriology, and the History of Interpretation: Deuteronomy 13:7a as a Test Case in Method

7. Recovering the Lost Original Meaning of welo’ tekasseh ’alayw (Deuteronomy 13:9)

8. “But You Shall Surely Kill Him!”: The Text-Critical and Neo-Assyrian Evidence for MT Deuteronomy 13:10

Part III. Debate and Dialogue: The Question of Method

9. The Case for Revision and Interpolation within the Biblical Legal Corpora

10. Calum M. Carmichael’s Approach to the Laws of Deuteronomy

11. The Hermeneutics of Tradition in Deuteronomy: A Reply to J. G. McConville

12. Is the Covenant Code an Exilic Composition? A Response to John Van Seters

Mailing List

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