New Perspectives on Ezra-Nehemiah
History and Historiography, Text, Literature, and Interpretation
Edited by Isaac Kalimi
Publication date:01 April 2012
Length of book:312 pages
New Perspectives on Ezra–Nehemiah offers a range of fresh, current views among scholars on the biblical books of Ezra and Nehemiah (traditionally, “Ezra”). These books focus on two short periods in the history of Judah in the Persian era: one recounts the events from the Cyrus Decree in 538 B.C.E. until the inauguration of the Second Temple in 515 B.C.E.; the other relates the acts of the Judean spiritual and political leaders, Ezra and Nehemiah, roughly two generations later, under the rule of Artaxerxes I, king of Persia. Ezra/Ezra–Nehemiah certainly remains the most significant written source for the study of the religious, social, and political aspects of Judah (and to some extent Samaria) in the Persian age, even in light of other biblical prophetical, literary, and historical writings from the Persian period (for example, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi, Chronicles, and Esther) and enlightening archaeological and epigraphical finds (for example, Elephantine and Wadi-Dalia papyri, short inscriptions, coins, seals, and bullae). Ezra–Nehemiah also presents unique instances of the literary genre memoir, late biblical historiography, and late Hebrew language.
The editor hopes that the original studies gathered in this volume will lead to a better understanding of issues in Ezra/Ezra–Nehemiah and will stimulate further research on this enthralling late biblical-historical writing.
—Hannah K. Harrington, Journal of the American Oriental Society