Archaeology and the Religion of Israel Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Archaeology and the Religion of Israel

William Foxwell Albright (1891-1971) was Professor of Semitic Languages at John Hopkins University (1929-58), and directed the American School of Oriental Research, Jerusalem (1920-29 and 1933-6). As an outstanding and prolific scholar and archaeologist, he was a huge influence in his field and dominated the field of biblical archaeology in his time. This book was originally delivered as a set of lectures in 1941, but was updated until 1953, and has stood the test of time very well indeed. It repays careful reading to this day, and is easily available in libraries and secondhand. It demonstrates Albright's skill in bringing together the bible texts, archaeological findings, history, languages, and religion of Israel and the Canaanites.
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The chapters are: 1) Archaeology and the Ancient Near Eastern Mind; 2) Arch. background of OT religion; 3) Arch. and the Religion of the Canaanites; 4) Arch. and the Religion of Early Israel; 5) Arch. and the Religion of Later Israel; Postscript. He demonstrates his huge knowledgebase and ability to integrate disparate types of information and arguments with flair. His unusually lucid and concise style, his 'take no prisoners' style of argument, and bone-crunching condemnations of 'hypercritical' scholars explain why he was so dominant in his day, and why he many ruffled feathers. The postscript contains his much-quoted statement: 'There can be no doubt that archaeology has confirmed the substantial historicity of the Old Testament tradition.' When you feel the strength of his argument, you tend to agree.
The review of this Book prepared by Michael JR Jose

Chapter Analysis of Archaeology and the Religion of Israel

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Kind Of History

Time of history:    -   2000-0 BC    -   History of mankind    -   Ancient Egyptian Era    -   Bible Time! History of religion?    -   Yes Religion?    -   Jews!

Subjects of this Historical Account

Religion? (if plays a major part)    -   Jews! Is the portrayal sympathetic?    -   Sympathetic From a certain profession/group?    -   religious leaders Intelligence of subject of history:    -   Smart


Middle East?    -   Yes Middle East    -   Israel    -   Syria    -   Lebanon If applicable, liberal/conservative?    -   Historian is very moderate

Writing Style

How much gore?    -   1 () How fast-paced is the book?    -   1 () Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Book makes you feel...    -   in awe How much focus on stories of individuals?    -   Focuses mostly on the people/nation level How much romance?    -   1 () Minor characters feature lots of:    -   blue collar types Pictures/Illustrations?    -   None Length of book    -   201-250 pages How much emphasis on small details?    -   10 ()

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William Foxwell Albright Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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