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: 5852

See Also:

Download Video - generic video source Download yalerlst145f06_hayes_lec04_01.mov (Video - generic video source 408.6 MB)

Download Video Download yalerlst145f06_hayes_lec04_01.flv (Video 172.9 MB)

Download Video Download yalerlst145f06_hayes_lec04_01_640x360_h264.mp4 (Video 143.2 MB)

Help icon Streaming Video Help

Related Open Educational Resources

Related content

Report a problem or upload files

If you have found a problem with this lecture or would like to send us extra material, articles, exercises, etc., please use our ticket system to describe your request and upload the data.
Enter your e-mail into the 'Cc' field, and we will keep you updated with your request's status.
Lecture popularity: You need to login to cast your vote.


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

Link this page

Would you like to put a link to this lecture on your homepage?
Go ahead! Copy the HTML snippet !

Write your own review or comment:

make sure you have javascript enabled or clear this field: