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THEO 7009 Psalms and the Cult (Spring: 3 )


Course Description

The Book of Psalms, sometimes called Israel’s “Songbook,” engages the world of religious practice, or cult, in a variety of ways. This is true, also, of other biblical poetic compositions outside of the Psalms. The present course investigates the problem of Psalms and the Cult from a number of perspectives by posing a variety of questions. To what extent does Israel’s poetry reflect or take for granted specific cultic practices? Are such practices individual or communal? Were they connected with expert oversight? How might Psalms have been used during cultic practice? Were they liturgical or performative texts? How might the relationship between psalms and prophecy inform the discussion? Students will formulate answers to these and other questions by close reading of a selection of Psalms in Hebrew, and by engagement with secondary literature and material culture evidence.


Schedule: Periodically

Instructor(s): David Vanderhooft

Prerequisites: Three semesters of Biblical Hebrew

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Last Updated: 15-Feb-17