Friday, January 09, 2009

Why study ANE stuff?

I just finished reading Bridging the Gap (and someday I'll even update the side bar!). I'll be excerpting and musing on it for the next week or so on this blog. I hope you enjoy it and are challenged at the same time.

Here's the first excerpt:
“I would also venture to suggest that many biblical scholars find more joy in trying to understand one cuneiform tablet (with five or six variant tablets) detailing a complex ritual than in first having to delve into more than 200 years of text-layer-oriented research that is not concerned with the meaning and communicative function of the ritual.”—Bridging the Gap, page 51

<idle musing>
What do you think? Is he right? Has biblical studies become so top-heavy with scholarship that it isn't fun anymore?

The fact that one is expected to know what everyone in the last 250 years said about a particular text is somewhat daunting. It also tends to take the freshness off the text.
</idle musing>

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is part of the reason why I try to focus on texts that were unearthed after 1928. There's a lot less ground to cover.