Dissertation Spotlight: Yael Landman, “The Biblical Law of Bailment in Its Ancient Near Eastern Contexts,” (Yeshiva University, 2017)
Landman: “A bailment is an arrangement wherein one person gives property to another person to keep safe or to use for a temporary period and then to return in kind. My 2017 dissertation examined the biblical laws of bailment, reconstructing functions of bailment in the societies of ancient Israel and Judah through exegesis of primary sources and consideration of the socio-economic legal background to the laws. Though less headline-grabbing a legal topic than homicide or adultery, bailments were deeply embedded in the socio-economic fabric of the biblical world. Study of the sources pertaining to these transactions offers a previously untapped window into both the conceptual underpinnings of biblical law and everyday life in ancient Israel and Judah.”
Book Note: Thomas Bolin, Ecclesiastes and the Riddle of Authorship (New York: Routledge, 2017)
Breed: “Who is Qohelet, the author of Ecclesiastes? In his scholarly monograph Ecclesiastes and the Riddle of Authorship, Thomas Bolin does not offer a singular answer to this question. He is not interested in discovering the actual identity of the author of Qohelet—if there is indeed one stable authorial identity lurking in the past. Had he offered his own interpretation of Qohelet’s persona, Bolin would have collapsed the enigma into one potential construal of the text. Instead, Bolin collects and categorizes a vast array of potential solutions to the problem of Qohelet’s identity that readers have offered throughout history, and in the process, he perceives more clearly the irreducible puzzle of Ecclesiastes.”
Articles and News
Michael Press writes about the weaponization of cultural heritage, especially Syrian antiquities, in ways that produce actively misleading reports.
Clifford Ando gives a fascinatingly comparative lecture on the end of the Roman Empire.
At the British Museum blog, Bettany Hughes ponders warrior women.
Jacqueline Vayntrub on date palms and invasive and subversive sexuality in the story of Tamar.
New short review up and running of David Stern’s The Jewish Bible: A Material History.
Startling, informative piece by Robert Hoyland on recent work on the identity of the seventh-century Arabian conquerors.
Detailed conference report of the International Qur’anic Studies Association, help simultaneous to SBLAAR in November.
Collaborative project site launched, produced by a graduate student team, introducing Late Antiquity as lived.
Published #HebrewProject Phase 2 #manuscript dated 1752-1782; Add 19021 Molad Mosheh. #Samaritan midrash and poetical texts. Beautiful script in this ms too https://t.co/zCafwxkkyE Image f37v f61r #Arabic pic.twitter.com/RDI58xWMZ5— BL Hebrew Project (@BL_HebrewMSS) 7 December 2017
a true beauty among the recently digitised manuscripts from the @laBnF for the #PolonskyPre1200 project: an 11thC copy of Hrabanus Maurus's figurative poems glorifying the Holy Cross (aka De laudibus sanctae Crucis) from Saint-Germain-des-Prés https://t.co/1ItZu0guRH pic.twitter.com/i1oc39qWD2— GiorgiaV (@ParvaVox) 2 December 2017
Here's to the students who are tired, over it, ready for break, but are still bringing their A-game to class. <bursting heart emoji>— Ellen Muehlberger (@emuehlbe) 4 December 2017