The Old Testament in the light of anthropology (1935) by E. O. James

The Old Testament in the light of anthropology: a course of public lectures in the University of Leeds

The Old Testament in the light of anthropology


My chief aim has been to supply a background for Old Testament studies constructed mainly from my own independent researches as an anthropologist, and to provide from accepted sources an account of the origin of the Hebrew tribes and their consolidation as a theocratic nation in its historical setting in the Ancient East. 

The real contribution of Israel to the world, however, has been in the sphere of religion, and it is this unique achievement that is revealed by a comparative study of the material. It is my hope, therefore, that this survey of the civilization and literature of the Hebrews may make clear the stages by which a " peculiar people " were led under the inspiration of God to discern between permanent and temporary values till at length the development reached its culmination in Christianity. My friend Mr H. Goote Lake, Hon. Secretary of the Folk-Lore Society, and my ever-devoted wife, have very kindly read the proofs and made useful suggestions at a time when I was much occupied with academic duties at the beginning of the October Term, and therefore liable to pass slips unnoticed.
I. Introductory. The sources of Hebrew 

Tradition I 

Ii. The Hebrews before the conquest of Palestine 17 

Iii. The Hebrew settlement in Palestine. 32 

Iv. Myth and ritual of the ancient east. 47 
V. The religion of the nomad Hebrews. 65 

Vi. Moses and Yahweh 83 

Vii. The religion of Israel before the exile 99 

Viii. The religion of Israel after the exile 120 

Bibliography 143 

Index 145 

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