Hidden Futures: Death and Immortality in Ancient Egypt, Anatolia, the Classical, Biblical and Arabic-Islamic World

By J. M. Bremer; Theo P.J. Van Den Hout et al. | Go to book overview

Death and the After-life in the Hebrew Bible of Ancient Israel

Nico van Uchelen


INTRODUCTION

The Hebrew Bible came into existence centuries after ancient Israel had ceased to exist. During a long process of internal and external growth, the literary corpus went through at least three important historical phases. The three separate periods have left their mark on the character of the book.

The long years of the Babylonian captivity in the 6th century before the Common Era can be assumed to have been an important period of cultural-religious restoration. The gathering, ordering and rewriting of the old-time traditions and the addition of new writings may have produced the framework of what nowadays is called the Hebrew Bible. This harmonizing framework must have pertained not so much to material extent and number of books as to literary character and religious tenure1.

The period of the Roman occupation and the destruction of the temple, and of Jerusalem, in 70 CE, had their accelerating influence on the final form of the literary material, which resulted in a gradual canonisation of the list of books2. Finally, synagogical urgency and philological accuracy induced rabbinic scholars in the 8th century CE to provide the meanwhile well-tried and trusty text with the final signs and signals for pronouncing and reciting.

This procedure has led to a curious paradox. On the one hand the Hebrew Bible presents itself as the "national" history of ancient Israel. The "faits et gestes" of the people of the Lord have been reported chronologically, beginning with the Creation and up to and including the return to the country after the Babylonian captivity. On the other hand, however, the canonical corpus, finally being completed by later periodically redactional activities has become an arte-

____________________
1
"Difficult as is the task of tracing the growth of the Old Testament literature and disentangling the strands of the several traditions which preceded the written records, that of reconstructing the processes by which the Old Testament Canon emerged is still more complex", cf. G. W. Anderson, "Canonical and non-canonical", The Cambridge History of the Bible, Vol. I ( From the Beginnings to Jerome), Cambridge 1970, Part III. The Old Testament, 113-158.
2
"Denn die beiden entscheidenden Phasen in der Entstehungsgeschichte des Kanons, das babylonische Exil und die Zerstörung des zweiten Tempels, bedeuten nicht nur einen Verlust der Rechtshoheit und politischen Identität, sondern auch der rituellen Kontinuität. Beide mußten in der Form des Kanons gerettet werden, um den Bruch zu überdauern", cf. Jan Astmann, Das kulturelle Gedächtnis. Schrift, Erinnerung und politische Identität in frühen Hochkulturen, München 1992, Zweites Kapitel, Schriftkultur, II. Kanon - zur Klärung eines Begriffes, 106.

-77-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Hidden Futures: Death and Immortality in Ancient Egypt, Anatolia, the Classical, Biblical and Arabic-Islamic World
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 256

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

    Already a member? Log in now.