Genesis: World of Myths and Patriarchs

Ada Feyerick, Author, Ada Feyerick, Editor, Nahum M. Sarna, With
Ada Feyerick, Author, Ada Feyerick, Editor, Nahum M. Sarna, With New York University Press $70 (560p) ISBN 978-0-8147-2668-6
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Using the results of the major archeological finds of the past century, Feyerick, former history and archeology editor at Horizon magazine, draws a stunning portrait of the ancient world that surrounded the writers of the Genesis stories. In more than 250 illustrations, including 64 color plates, Feyerick draws attention to the ways in which the mythologies and the social codes of various Near Eastern cultures such as the Mesopotamian, the Egyptian and the Canaanite shaped the worlds of the patriarchs in Genesis. Gordon and Sarna, both noted biblical scholars at Brandeis University, provide the dense but illuminating historical introductions that accompany each chapter's illustrations. The centerpiece of the book is a section titled ""Biblical Memory,"" a collection of gorgeous color photographs that demonstrate the ways in which the Genesis traditions are still a lively part of contemporary religious traditions in the Middle East. Each chapter also contains ""Discovery"" pages, which are short texts written by some of the archeologists who were among the first to discover evidence of the ancient Near Eastern civilizations and which chronicle the effect of these discoveries upon biblical meaning. Not merely another Genesis book, Feyerick's collection offers a spectacular imaginative visualization of the worlds of the earliest biblical patriarchs. (Mar.)
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