Rediscovering the Dead Sea Scrolls: An Assessment of Old and New Approaches and Methods

Rediscovering the Dead Sea Scrolls: An Assessment of Old and New Approaches and Methods

Rediscovering the Dead Sea Scrolls: An Assessment of Old and New Approaches and Methods

Rediscovering the Dead Sea Scrolls: An Assessment of Old and New Approaches and Methods

Synopsis

Tools for Our Work introduces readers to a wide range of established and experimental treatments of the Dead Sea Scrolls, including paleography, archaeology, manuscript analysis, and a variety of literary, historical, and social scientific approaches.

Written by experts in Dead Sea Scrolls studies, these essays -- while each able to stand on their own as state-of-the-field discussions -- together provide a vibrant intersectional picture of scrolls studies on the cusp of its seventh decade.

Excerpt

The study of the Dead Sea Scrolls is, at its most basic, an interdisciplinary endeavor. in identifying, reconstructing, translating, and interpreting the texts from Qumran — not to mention assigning meaning to them in the larger contexts of ancient Judaism, early Christianity, and biblical studies — scrolls scholars range widely through the fields of philology, literary analysis, ancient history, and beyond. the fragmentary state of the evidence makes such interdisciplinary work a necessity. But interdisciplinarity is also an opportunity — to contextualize the evidence in new ways, introduce new modes of analysis, and potentially reconfigure the larger picture of the world of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

The purpose of this volume on methods and theories in the study of these texts is to bring together a range of diverse perspectives on and scholarly approaches to the scrolls, some addressing issues that are foundational to the field, and some exploring avenu the scrolls, but also a more self-reflective assessment of the limits of their approaches and the potential pitfalls associated with them. Contributors were also invited to focus on a single example or a cluster of related examples, in the interest of providing readers with a concrete and vivid sense of how their approaches work in actual practice.

Interest in questions of method has ebbed and flowed over the course of the history of scrolls scholarship, but the current moment — in which full editions of the scrolls and helpful electronic tools are available . . .

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