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This anthology brings together for the first time the most popular and widely used English hymns from that genre's most formative and important period: the eighteenth century. This annotated collection of some 325 hymns (with author introductions and a general historical sketch) will be of inestimable value to scholars, students, and laypersons from several disciplines and interests; from social history to church history and theology, from political science to literature. Hymns were the most widely read and memorized verbal structures of the eighteenth century: this anthology, therefore, provides unique and higly significant insights into the culture and habits of thought of a people - and their spiritual leaders.
Does God act in history? Many passages in the Bible speak with confidence of such action: but does it continue? What does this concept say to us today? By what criteria might we evaluate the events of our own time as the work of God in history? The present study brings to the discussion of these questions the voice of the author of Luke-Acts. It demonstrates the existence of a literary schema in the intra-community discourse in Acts in which God's deeds in history are the central topic, and which presents a set of criteria for calling an event or set of events the work of God. It thus furnishes a solid New Testament basis from which faith communities may begin in their discernment of the reality and the meaning for today of God's working among us.
An original and uncompromising study of the Qur'anic foundations of women's identity and agency, this book is a bold call to Muslim women and men to reread and reinterpret the Qur'an, Islam's most authoritative source, and to discover within its revelations an inherent affirmation of gender equality. Nimat Hafez Barazangi asserts that Muslim women have been generally excluded from equal agency, from full participation in Islamic society, and thus from full and equal Islamic identity, primarily because of patriarchal readings of the Qur'an and the entire range of early Qur'anic literature. Based on her pedagogical study of the sacred text, she argues that Islamic higher learning is a basic human right, that women have equal authority to participate in the interpretation of Islamic primary sources, and that women will realize their just role in society and their potential as human beings only when they are involved in the interpretation of the Qur'an. Consequently, a Muslim woman's relationship with God must not be dependent on her husband's or father's moral agency. Barazangi, an American Muslim of Syrian origin, is a scholar, an activist, and a concerned feminist. Her analysis of the complex interaction of gender, religion, and the power of knowledge for self-identity offers a paradigm shift in Islamic studies. She documents the historical development of Islamic thought and describes how Muslim males have arrived at the prevailing exclusionary positions. She considers the issues of dependent morality and of modesty, especially in attire - a polarizing subject for many Muslim women - and she concludes that the majority of Muslim women today are not educated even for a complementary role in society. The book offers a curricular framework for self-learning that could prepare Muslim women for an active role in citizenship and policy making in a pluralistic society and may serve as a guideline for moving toward a ""gender revolution."" Her main thesis, if carried out in the lives of Muslims in America or elsewhere, would be so radical and liberating that her discourse is more powerful than those of many Muslim feminists. She writes, ""I intend this book to affirm the self-identity of the Muslim woman as an autonomous spiritual and intellectual human being.
"The Analects" (Lunyu) is one of the most influential texts in human history. As a putative record of Confucius' (551-479 bce) teachings and a foundational text in scriptural Confucianism, this classic was instrumental in shaping intellectual traditions in China and East Asia until the early twentieth century. But no premodern reader read only the text of "The Analects" itself. Rather, "The Analects" was embedded in a web of interpretation that mediated its meaning. Modern interpreters of "The Analects" only rarely acknowledge this legacy of two thousand years of commentaries. How well do we understand prominent or key commentaries from this tradition? How often do we read such commentaries as we might read the text on which they comment? Many commentaries do more than simply comment on a text. Not only do they shape the reading of the text, but passages of text serve as pretexts for the commentator to develop and expound his own body of thought. This book attempts to redress our neglect of commentaries by analyzing four key works dating from the late second century to the mid-nineteenth century (a period substantially contemporaneous with the rise and decline of scriptual Confucianism): the commentaries of He Yan (ca. 190-249); Huang Kan (488 to 545); Zhu Xi (1130-1200); and Liu Baonan (1791-1855) and Liu Gongmian (1821-1880).
In The Qur'an and Modern Arabic Literary Criticism, Mohammad Salama navigates the labyrinthine semantics that underlie this sacred text and inform contemporary scholarship. The book presents reflections on Quranic exegesis by explaining - and distinguishing between - interpretation and explication. While the book focuses on Quranic and literary scholarship in twentieth-century Egypt from Taha Husayn to Nasr Hamid Abu Zayd, it also engages with an immense tradition of scholarship from the classical period to the present, including authors such as Abu `Ubayda, Ibn `Abbas, al-Razi, and al-Tabari. Salama argues that, over the centuries, the Arabic language experienced semantic and phonological shifts, creating a lacuna in understanding the Qur'an and bringing contemporary readers under the spell of hermeneutical and parochial interpretations. He demonstrates that while this lacuna explains much of the intellectual poverty of traditionalist approaches to Quranic exegesis, the work of the modern Egyptian school of academics marks a sharp departure from the programmed conservatism of Islamist and Salafi exegetics. Through analyses of the writings of these intellectuals, the author shows that a fresh look at the sources and a revolutionary attempt to approach the Qur'an could render tradition itself an impetus for an alternative aesthetics-contextual, open, and unfolding.
Volume 2 of the Mercer Commentary on the Bible (MCB, 1994), the fascicle edition, comprises commentaries on the so-called "historical" books of the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible, along with several appropriate articles from the Mercer Dictionary of the Bible (MDB, 1990; 5th corrected printing, August 1997). This convenient yet thorough text is for the classroom and for anyone who wishes to focus on the study of the Old Testament "historical" books. Other volumes in the series focus on other appropriate groups of canonical and deuterocanonical writings (Prophets, Torah, Gospels, and so forth -- see p. vii for list). Each volume includes the complete MCB commentaries on the focus texts and several relevant articles from MDB.
In this volume, a part of the Westminster Bible Companion series, Paul Hooker suggests that First and Second Chronicles is not a "history of Israel," but rather a theological reflection on the story of Israel's faith. The Chronicler, according to Hooker, seeks to sketch the lines of Israel's future as the people of God by drawing on the resources of Israel's past. Books in the Westminster Bible Companion series assist laity in their study of the Bible as a guide to Christian faith and practice. Each volume explains the biblical book in its original historical context and explores its significance for faithful living today. These books are ideal for individual study and for Bible study classes and groups.
Recent years have seen a remarkable surge in interest in the book of Genesis - the first book of the Bible - and a foundational text of Western culture. In this new commentary, Thomas Brodie offers a complete and accessible overview of Genesis from literary, theological, and historical standpoints. Brodie's work is organized around three main ideas: the first is that the primary subject of Genesis is human existence - while full of historical echoes, it is primarily a sophisticated portrayal of the progress and pitfalls of human life. His second thesis is that Genesis' basic organizational unity is binary, or diptych: building on older insights that Genesis is somehow dialogical, he argues that the entire book is composed of diptychs - accounts which, like some paintings, consist of two parts or panels. Finally, Brodie contends that many of Genesis' sources still exist, and can be identified and verified.
Perfect for students, Reading Isaiah is a practical and nontechnical literary introduction to the book of Isaiah as a poem. Peter Quinn-Miscall translates much of the Hebrew text and focuses upon parallelism, figurative language, and the use of imagery.
This study, based on a careful examination of hundreds of authoritative rabbinic writings, offers a very different picture of the textual reality of, and the rabbinic beliefs about the Torah. B. Barry Levy explores exactly how perfect or imperfect these rabbis thought the text to be. He demonstrates conclusively that many of the same rabbinic figures whose teachings inform other contemporary Orthodox doctrines were quite open about the fact that their Bible texts, even their Torah scrolls, were not completely accurate. Moreover, though many of the variations are of little exegetical significance, these rabbis often acknowledged that, textually speaking, the situation was beyond repair.
The Kalacakratantra is the latest and most comprehensive Buddhist Tantra that is available in its original Sanskrit. This will be the first thorough academic work to be published on this Tantra. The Kalacakratantra's five chapters are classified into three categories: Outer, Inner, and Other Kalacakratantra. The present work concentrates on the Inner Kalacakratantra, which deals with the nature of a human being.
"Web of Life" weaves its suggestive interpretation of Jewish
culture in the Palestine of late antiquity on the warp of a
singular, breathtakingly tragic, and sublime rabbinic text,
"Lamentations Rabbah." The textual analyses that form the core of
the book are informed by a range of theoretical paradigms rarely
brought to bear on rabbinic literature: structural analysis of
mythologies and folktales, performative approaches to textual
production, feminist theory, psychoanalytical analysis of culture,
cultural criticism, and folk narrative genre analysis.
This volume is a comprehensive but accessible guide to the major questions raised by the Hellenistic Jewish work, Joseph and Aseneth. Joseph and Aseneth is an excellent example of the controverted issues of text, dating and Sitz im Leben, when such decisions must be largely based on internal evidence. It provides an entre into the vexed question of genre, given the numerous literary links that have been suggested for it. Its mysterious but engaging plot, and its female protagonist, evoke ongoing sociological and feminist debate. It is thus strongly commended for careful study to students and scholars of Judaism, New Testament, sociology and narratology. Intended as a sound basis for such exploration, this guide also offers a fresh narrative reading in which the revelatory character of Joseph and Aseneth is brought to the forefront.>
The Damascus document is one of the most important texts from the Qumran caves. Part One of this Companion offers a lucid and up-to-date introduction to all the manuscripts, including the eight recently published from Qumran Cave 4. It also provides a review of the key areas of scholarly research on this important Qumran text. Part Two is devoted to the recently published text 4QMiscellaneous Rules (4Q265; olim Serekh Damascus). This text has already become the subject of intense interest among students of the Dead Sea Scrolls because of its unique relationship to both the Community Rule and the Damascus Document.
The Temple Scroll and Related Texts, one of the series Companion to the Qumran Scrolls, is a comprehensive roadmap to the Temple Scroll, the longest and one of the most complex of the manuscripts from Qumran. The central chapter contains a discussion of the contents of the Temple Scroll, including sections on the Temple and its courts, purity regulation, the festival calendar, and the Deuteronomic Paraphrase with the Law of the King. The Companion also includes a chapter on the Description of the New Jerusalem, as well as one on the relationship of the Temple Scroll to the Book of Jubilees, 4QMiqsat Ma'aseh ha-Torah, and the Damascus Document. Written in accessible language and featuring extensive bibliographies, this Companion is ideal for undergraduate and graduate classes.>
An important glossary of Arabic and Islamic terms has also been added in order to make the understanding of unfamiliar terms easy for those students who are attempting the study of the Quran for the first time in the English language. Also, a section on the Invitation to the Quran has been included to bring out the fervour and anticipation of any Muslim with regard to the Quran. It lends to the book a practical aspect to the approach to the Quran along with the other academic discussions this books entails.
The Tao-Te-Ching -- the unfolding of life -- is a book to read again and again. Lao-Tzu's timeless work is of value to everyone, regardless of personal beliefs, traditions, and religious practices. It poetically encapsulates the primordial wisdom of another time, when the Sage was able to live a contemplative life, unencumbered by complex rites or the cares of the world. It is a guide that shows us how yielding leads to transformation; it reveals the highest manifestation of life, forever seeking its highest expression.
Originally translated into French by Leon Wieger, the 1913 edition was published as Les Peres du Systeme Taoiste. Wieger was recognized by the great Orientalist, Ananda Coomaraswamy, as one of the "handful" of Western Orientalists who truly understood Chinese philosophy. Derek Bryce now brings Wieger's French into English. His translation demonstrates a conscious commitment to both the original Chinese text and the profound insights of Wieger's work. To this edition, Bryce adds summaries of the writings attributed to three other Taoists -- Huai-Nan-Tzu, Kuan-Yin-Tzu, and Tung-Ku-Ching -- from Wieger's Histoire des Croyances et des Opinions Philosophiques en Chine (1917). The Wieger-Bryce translation offers the reader new insights into the eternal wisdom of the Tao-Te-Ching.
The Dead Sea Scrolls from Qumran provide the oldest, best, and most direct witness we have to the origins of the Hebrew Bible. Prior to the discovery of the Scrolls, scholars had textual evidence for only a single, late period in the history of the biblical text, leading them to believe that the text was uniform. The Scrolls, however, provide documentary evidence a thousand years older than all previously known Hebrew manuscripts and reveal a period of pluriformity in the biblical text prior to the stage of uniformity.
In this important collection of studies, Eugene Ulrich, one of the world's foremost experts on the Dead Sea Scrolls, outlines a comprehensive theory that reconstructs the complex development of the ancient texts that eventually came to form the Old Testament. Several of the essays set forth his pioneering theory of "multiple literary editions," which is replacing older views of the origins of the biblical text.
"The Dead Sea Scrolls and the Origins of the Bible" represents the leading edge of research in the exciting field of Scrolls studies.
The 'pivot pattern' is a unique type of chiasmus, a linguistic pattern characterized by an inversion of the internal order of a phrase or passage. The main idea is found primarily at its pivot, while its elements, normally of an uneven number, are distributed on both sides of the pivot in a mirrored symmetry. Klaus undertakes here to compile a 'grammar' of the pattern, and to characterize, exemplify and differentiate its various forms.>
In the second book of Samuel, the prophet Nathan tells King David that God will give to him and his descendants a great and everlasting kingdom. In this study William Schniedewind looks at how this dynastic Promise has been understood and transmitted from the time of its first appearance at the inception of the Hebrew monarchy until the dawn of Christianity. He shows in detail how, over the centuries, the Promise grew in importance and prestige.
This magnum opus is not another catalogue of the forms of biblical literature, but a deeply reflected account of the significance of form itself. Buss writes out of his experience in Western philosophy and the intricate involvement of biblical criticism in philosophical history. Equally, biblical criticism and the development of notions of form are related to social contexts, whether from the side of the aristocracy (tending towards generality) or of the bourgeois (tending towards particularity) or of an inclusive society (favouring a relational view). Form criticism, in Buss's conception, is no mere formal exercise, but the observation of interrelationships among thoughts and moods, linguistic regularities and the experiences and activities of life. This work, with its many examples from both Testaments, will be fundamental for Old and New Testament scholars alike.>
The volume contributes a postcolonial perspective to such topics as textual production, commentarial writings and translations in colonial times, and then moves on to inspect Eurocentric notions embedded in current western biblical interpretation especially in projects such as "Jesus Research." It also contains an overview of and introduction to one of the most challenging and controversial theories of our time, postcolonialism--a theory that gives mediation and representation to Third World people. Though long established in cultural studies, postcolonial theory has not previously been seriously applied to Asian biblical interpretation.
Using a series of intriguing and suspenseful narratives, Woman at the Window explores universal female postures, responses, and language which underlie the collective feminine experience. Drawing from traditional Biblical readings and feminist explorations, this text offers a series of creative, analytical retellings of Biblical stories focusing on women's roles. The ancient tales are used to highlight the archetypal characteristics, forms of conduct, psychic reactions, and inner motivations of the contemporary. woman. Aschenasy's insightful and careful reading of the old texts, combined with the aid of modern perspectives on social and individual behaviors, genetic and environmental influences, and modern literary theories, help augment and deepen the understanding of the Biblical tales as well as women's roles within them.
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