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Genres of Rewriting in Second Temple Judaism

Scribal Composition and Transmission

Genres of Rewriting in Second Temple Judaism

In this book, Molly Zahn investigates how early Jewish scribes rewrote their authoritative traditions in the course of transmitting them, from minor edits in the course of copying to whole new compositions based on prior works. Les mer
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Genres of Rewriting in Second Temple Judaism

In this book, Molly Zahn investigates how early Jewish scribes rewrote their authoritative traditions in the course of transmitting them, from minor edits in the course of copying to whole new compositions based on prior works. Scholars have detected evidence for rewriting in a wide variety of textual contexts, but Zahn's is the first book to map manuscripts and translations of biblical books, so-called 'parabiblical' compositions, and the sectarian literature from Qumran in relation to one another. She introduces a new, adaptable set of terms for talking about rewriting, using the idea of genre as a tool to compare and contrast different cases. Although rewriting has generally been understood as a vehicle for biblical interpretation, Zahn moves beyond that framework to demonstrate that rewriting was a pervasive textual strategy in the Second Temple period. Her book contributes to a powerful new model of early Jewish textuality, illuminating the rich and diverse culture out of which both rabbinic Judaism and early Christianity eventually emerged.

1. Rewriting, revision, and reuse: language and methods; 2. Genre and rewriting; 3. Revision and reuse in the Bible; 4. Beyond 'rewritten Bible': revision and reuse in the Temple Scroll, Jubilees, and Qumran sectarian works; 5. Translation and/as rewriting: the Greek Bible, the Targumim, and the Genesis Apocryphon; 6. Diverse genres of reuse: centripetal, limited, historical resume, pastiche; 7. Second temple rewriting in context: authority, exegesis, and scribal culture.

A study of the many different ways ancient Jewish scribes changed, or rewrote, the sacred and authoritative traditions they inherited.

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