The Biography of Ancient Israel: National Narratives in the Bible / Edition 1

The Biography of Ancient Israel: National Narratives in the Bible / Edition 1

by Ilana Pardes
     
 


"Pardes has a remarkable gift for asking new questions about familiar texts and providing fresh insights into old problems. By looking closely at the key metaphors and the narrative details of the biblical story of the formation of the Israelite nation, she has teased out of the text a compelling biography."—Robert Alter, Professor of Hebrew and Comparative… See more details below

Overview


"Pardes has a remarkable gift for asking new questions about familiar texts and providing fresh insights into old problems. By looking closely at the key metaphors and the narrative details of the biblical story of the formation of the Israelite nation, she has teased out of the text a compelling biography."—Robert Alter, Professor of Hebrew and Comparative Literature, University of California, Berkeley

"Ilana Pardes elegantly recasts the mythic story of Israel's emergence as the story of the birth, individuation, initiation, and maturity of an emergent subject. Ambivalences, deferrals, power struggles, and multiple memories all characterize Israel's development and the stories told about it. Through a set of close and graceful readings, Pardes persuasively argues that the first five books of the Bible constitute, not the history, but the biography of a nation." —Elizabeth A. Castelli, Barnard College, author of Imitating Paul: A Discourse of Power

"The book of books has generated many other works, but Ilana Pardes's The Biography of Ancient Israel is in a class by itself. In beautiful, spare prose, she reconstructs the way the biblical authors imagined the history of ancient Israel. Artfully weaving literary and psychological insights, she has given us an entirely fresh view of the Bible as original as it is brilliant. This is a book for every reader of the Bible who wishes 'to wrest tradition away from a conformism that is about to overpower it.'"—David Biale, author of Eros and the Jews

"This is a wonderful book and a delight to read. The idea of treating the exodus story as a collective biography is quite original, and makes possible a genuinely illuminating reading of the story."—Michael Walzer, author of Exodus and Revolution

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780520236868
Publisher:
University of California Press
Publication date:
09/01/2002
Series:
Contraversions: Critical Studies in Jewish Literature, Culture, and Society Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
222
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.50(d)

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments
1. Introduction: Split Conception
2. Imagining the Birth of a Nation
3. Suckling in the Wilderness: The Absent Mother
4. At the Foot of Mount Sinai: National Rites of Initiation
5. The Spies in the Land of the Giants: Restless Youth
6. Crossing the Threshold: In the Plains of Moab
7. Epilogue: Mount Nebo
Notes
Bibliography
Index

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