Emory University
Spring 1997
Max: 18; Writing requirement: No
Professor David R. Blumenthal (
W 7:30 - 10:00
at professor's home


The Hebrew Bible (=Tanakh) is full of quotations. It is also brimming with stories and characters whose names have become legends in western culture. The purpose of this course is not to study passages in depth, but to study a good part of the Tanakh in order to learn who is who, what happened where, and who said what to whom. We will, accordingly, read our way through a sizeable section of the Tanakh, identify and memorize the quotations, and learn the key figures and moments in this literature.


  • Bible, any translation
  • recommended: Tanakh, Jewish Publication Society.
  • best: Hebrew original
  • S. Spiegel, Amos and Amaziah.


  • P. Trible, Texts of Terror.
  • M. Bal, Lethal Love.
  • H. Fisch, Poetry With a Purpose.
  • D. Blumenthal, Facing the Abusing God: A Theology of Protest.
  • E. Wiesel, Night.
  • C. Newsom, The Women's Bible Commentary.


There is a lot of reading for this course, and a lot of memorizing. Quizzes and the final exam are short-answer identifications.Students will be responsible to hand in seven selected quotations each week and to keep a personal file. Professor Blumenthal will keep an official class file of quotations and will distribute it weekly. Class will consist of discussing the quotations students bring into class.


Jan. 15 Introduction: favorite quotations, favorite stories

assn.: Genesis

Jan. 22 Genesis

assn.: Exodus and Leviticus

Jan. 29 Exodus and Leviticus

assn.: Numbers and Deuteronomy

Feb. 5 Numbers and Deuteronomy

assn.: Joshua and Judges

Feb. 12 Joshua and Judges

assn.: 1 Samuel

Feb. 19 1 Samuel

assn: 2 Samuel

Feb. 26 2 Samuel

assn.: 1 Kings

Mar. 5 1 Kings

assn.: 2 Kings

[Mar. 12 no class, spring break]

Mar. 19 2 Kings

assn.: Isaiah

Mar. 26 Isaiah

assn.: Twelve Minor Prophets

Apr. 2 Twelve Minor Prophets

assn.: Jeremiah

Apr. 9 Jeremiah

assn.: Ruth, Esther, Song of Songs

Apr. 16 Ruth, Esther, Song of Songs

assn.: class choice

Apr. 23-->24 Class choice

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return to index of Selected Syllabi

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