The Biography of Ancient Israel: National Narratives in the Bible

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The Biography of Ancient Israel: National Narratives in the Bible
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65.00 ₪
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45.00 ₪
Ilana Pardes
The Van Leer Jerusalem Institute and Hakibbutz Hameuchad
Year of Publication: 

The people in the Hebrew Bible is imagined mainly as a human being. This book examines the rich metaphorical texture by means of which this collective portrait comes alive and investigates the representation of various stages in the life of the people, from its birth in Egypt, through its infancy in the desert, and ending with its education, which has no defined conclusion. In the biblical text, the author argues, history and literature are intertwined more openly than they are in modern historiography, and consequently this is a fascinating text for examining the narrative basis of peoples.

The stiffneck of the people receives a subversive reading here that emphasizes the value of the complaints against the official national line. The Hebrew Bible turns out to be not only the source of national myths but also a text that offers a model for critiquing the premises of collective dreams. The complex relations between the rebellious people and the deity, which swing between unique closeness and rage and disappointment, are defined as an incisive expression of national ambivalence. The book also deals with the gender complexity that typifies the relations between the people and the deity.