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How to Read the Jewish Bible [Paperback]

By Marc Brettler (Author)
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Item description for How to Read the Jewish Bible by Marc Brettler...

"Starred review. Brettler begins with the complicated web of doctrine, history, and myth that is the Hebrew Bible and untangles it until a clear and beautifully drawn picture emerges. An outstanding introduction,"---Publishers Weekly. Relies on the historical method to open up each major section of Scripture. 384 pages, softcover. Oxford University.

Publishers Description
In his new book, master Bible scholar and teacher Marc Brettler argues that today's contemporary readers can only understand the ancient Hebrew Scripture by knowing more about the culture that produced it. And so Brettler unpacks the literary conventions, ideological assumptions, and historical conditions that inform the biblical text and demonstrates how modern critical scholarship and archaeological discoveries shed light on this fascinating and complex literature.
Brettler surveys representative biblical texts from different genres to illustrate how modern can read these texts. He guides us in reading the Bible as it was read in the biblical period, independent of later religious norms and interpretive traditions. Understanding the Bible this way lets us appreciate it as an interesting text that speaks in multiple voices on profound issues.
Although the emphasis of How to Read the Jewish Bible is on showing contemporary Jews, as well as Christians, how they can relate to the Bible in a more meaningful way, readers at any level of religious faith can benefit greatly from this comprehensive but remarkably clear guide to interpreting the Jewish Bible.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Oxford University Press, USA
Pages   384
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.2" Width: 6.1" Height: 1.1"
Weight:   1.25 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   May 1, 2007
Publisher   Oxford University Press
ISBN  0195325222  
ISBN13  9780195325225  

Availability  0 units.

More About Marc Brettler

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Marc Brettler is Dora Golding Professor of Biblical Literature and chair of the Department of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies at Brandeis University. His main areas of research are religious metaphors and the Bible, biblical historical texts, and women and the Bible. He is the author of several books and co-editor of The Jewish Study Bible.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Bible & Other Sacred Texts > Bible > Hebrew
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Commentaries > Old Testament
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Concordances
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Criticism & Interpretation > Old Testament
5Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > General
6Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Bible > Old Testament

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Reviews - What do customers think about How to Read the Jewish Bible?

Identical with "How to read the bible"  Jan 14, 2010
This is an excellent book without doubt.
However, it must be noted that this book is identical with "How to read the bible" except for the presence of "preface to the paperback edition".
Recommended!  Jan 19, 2009
I have many intros to the Miqra' (Tanak, Bible, Hebrew Bible), and a fair number include the Christian 'Bible'. In fact, there are not enough accessible introductions to our Bible and by Jewish scholars. But here's one, definitely. After seeing it many times at the bookstore, I finally broke down and ordered it (but not at retail!!) from this site.

The book is from a modern scholarship point of view considering documentary source theory, etc. (contra, see Umberto Cassuto, Documentary Hypothesis). But it looks at many aspects of each of the books of the Scriptures and I think it gives clear examples to back up his view rather than listing vague notices of instances concerning source theories. Another thing I like is that he refers regularly to the Hebrew text giving both transliteration and pointed Hebrew. (This is important because transliterations are not done well typically and are ambiguous toward the actual Hebrew spelling.)

This would make an excellent introduction to Bible for an individual or college text in a secular or perhaps religious school (yeshiva) class. A note to staff: Don't use books that throw the Christian scripture in with the Bible (Miqra') for intro courses. This is intellectual dishonesty and bias. You would not use a text treating the Hebrew Scriptures and Frank Herbert's Dune books as an intro to Bible; why use one that includes Christian scripture? Judaism and Christianity are not in continuum; they are mutually exclusive. There is nothing in the 'NT' needed to understand Jewish Scripture.

I highly recommend this short introduction to understand Jewish Scripture in its own right. (JPS also has a good intro.)

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