Lecture 4 - Doublets and Contradictions, Seams and Sources: Genesis 5-11 and the Historical-Critical Method

author: Christine Hayes, Department of Religious Studies, Yale University
published: Feb. 16, 2011,   recorded: September 2006,   views: 5846
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Description

This lecture continues the discussion on Genesis, including the familiar accounts of Cain and Abel, the Flood and Noahide covenant. The story of Cain and Abel expresses the notion of the God-endowed sanctity of human life and a "universal moral law" governing the world. Examination of the contradictions and doublets in the flood story leads to a discussion of the complex composition and authorship of the Pentateuch. These features as well as anachronisms challenge traditional religious convictions of Moses as the author of the first five books of the Bible.

Reading assignment:

Bible: Introduction to the Torah, (JSB pp. 1-7); Gen 5-11

Habel, Norman. Literary Criticism of the Old Testament. Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1971. pp. 1-42

For Section Discussion: (1) Gen 1-3 (2) Boyarin, Daniel. "Behold Israel According to the Flesh" and "Different Eves." In Carnal Israel. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993. pp. 31-46, 77-106 (3) Pagels, Elaine. Adam, Eve and the Serpent. New York: Random House, 1988. pp. 57-77 (4) Trible, Phyllis. "Depatriarchalizing in Biblical Interpretation." In JAAR 41. pp. 30-48

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