Academic Programs 
      

Hebrew Bible Survey I   (SC-519)
  Fall 2005

An introduction to the Hebrew Scriptures, this course will apply historical-critical methods of study to develop a framework for understanding the origins of the texts and the relationship of the texts to one another. Attention will be given to contemporary theories of biblical interpretation. Survey I will cover the materials in the Torah and Prophets (Genesis-Kings).  

 

Meeting Day, Time and Dates: 
Tuesdays from 7 p.m. to 9:20 p.m., beginning September 13

Uriah Kim
Professor of Hebrew Bible
 

Contact Information:
phone: 
(860) 509-9500
email: kim@hartsem.edu

 

Course Syllabus


 Course Objectives

  1. Through this course students will become more familiar with the content of the Torah/Pentateuch (Genesis–Deuteronomy) and the Former Prophets (Joshua – Kings).
  2. Students will have greater understanding of the historical and socio–political context in which the Hebrew Bible emerged. 
  3. To engage various methods of interpretation in biblical studies and various communities around the world who are doing the interpretation. 

 

Requirements & Grades:

  1. Students are required to turn in one question and one comment on assigned readings for each week.  It must be no more than one page (double spaced) in length.  At least 10 “question and comment” reports are expected for the total of 10% toward the final grade.
  2. There will a Midterm Examination on October 25 (25% toward the final grade).  The first part of the examination will contain identifying biblical texts from the Torah/Pentateuch.  The second part will be short answer identification of important terms and ideas in biblical studies based upon assigned readings.  The third part will contain one essay question based upon lectures and classroom discussion. 
  3. There will a Final Examination on December 13 (25% toward the final grade).  The first part of the examination will contain identifying biblical texts from the Former Prophets/Deuteronomistic History.  The second part will be short answer identification of important terms and ideas in biblical studies based upon assigned readings.  The third part will contain one essay question based upon lectures and classroom discussion. 
  4. Students are required to write a 10–12 page exegesis paper, which will be due on December 13 (30% toward the final grade).  Students are also required to give a 10–15 minute presentation on their paper proposals during one of the following weeks: November 1, 8, or 15 (10% toward the final grade).

 

Required Books (Available for Purchase at the Seminary Bookstore)

  • John J. Collins, Introduction to the Hebrew Bible (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2004).
  • Carol A. Newsom and Sharon H. Ringe, eds., The Women’s Bible Commentary (Expanded ed.; Louisville: Westminster/John Knox, 1998).
  • Daniel Patte et al., eds., Global Bible Commentary (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2004).
  • Course Reader (contains articles from the recommended book list)

 

Recommended Books

  • Bruce C. Birch, Walter Brueggemann, Terence E. Fretheim, and David L. Petersen, A Theological Introduction to the Old Testament (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1999).
  • Stephanie Dalley, Myths from Mesopotamia (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1989).
  • J. Cheryl Exum, Plotted, Shot, and Painted: Cultural Representations of Biblical Women (JSOTSup, 215; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1996).
  • Cain Hope Felder, ed., Stony the Road We Trod: African–American Biblical Interpretation (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1991).
  • Fernando F. Segovia and Mary A. Tolbert, eds., Reading from This Place, Volume 1: Social Location and Biblical Interpretation in the United States (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1995).
  • R. S. Sugirtharajah, ed., Voices from the Margin: Interpreting the Bible in the Third World (2d. ed.; Maryknoll, NY: Orbis, 1995).

 

Class Schedule

 

1.  September 13            Introductions: Course, Hermeneutics, and the Torah 

Reading Assignments

  • Fernando F. Segovia, “‘And They Began to Speak in Other Tongues’: Competing Modes of Discourse in Contemporary Biblical Criticism,” Reading from This Place, 1–32.
  • Collins, Introduction, 47–65.

 

2.  September 20        The Primeval History: Myth and History

Discussion

  • Genesis 1–3: The Creation Stories in the Ancient Near Eastern Context.

Reading Assignments

  • Genesis 1–11
  • Collins, Introduction, 67–82.
  • Newsom and Ringe, Women’s Bible Commentary, 1–18.
  • Dalley, Myths from Mesopotamia, 233–63.
  • Birch et al., A Theological Introduction to the Old Testament, 35–66.

 

3.  September 27        Stories of the Ancestors of Ancient Israel

Discussion

  • Genesis 16:1–6 and 21:8–21: Hagar and Ishmael.

Reading Assignments

  • Genesis 12–50
  • Collins, Introduction, 83–105.
  • Newsom and Ringe, Women’s Bible Commentary, 18–29.
  • Patte, Global Bible Commentary, 1–16.
  • John W. Waters, “Who Was Hagar?” in Stony the Road We Trod, 187–205.

 

4.  October 4               Moses and the Exodus

Discussion

  • God as Liberator?

Reading Assignments

  • Exodus
  • Collins, Introduction, 107–137.
  • Newsom and Ringe, Women’s Bible Commentary, 30–39.
  • Patte, Global Bible Commentary, 17–29.
  • George V. Pixley and Clodovis Boff, “A Latin American Perspective: The Option for the Poor in the Old Testament,” Voices from the Margin, 215–27.

 

5.  October 11             The Priestly Writings

Discussion

  • Dualism in the Priestly Writings

Reading Assignments

  • Leviticus and Numbers
  • Collins, Introduction, 139–158.
  • Newsom and Ringe, Women’s Bible Commentary, 40–56.
  • Patte, Global Bible Commentary, 30–51.

 

6.  October 18             Deuteronomy

Discussion

  • Deuteronomy 6:4–9

Reading Assignments

  • Deuteronomy
  • Collins, Introduction, 159–179.
  • Newsom and Ringe, Women’s Bible Commentary, 57–68.
  • Patte, Global Bible Commentary, 52–63.

 

7.  October 25             Midterm Examination and Introduction to the DH

8.  November 1          Joshua and the Conquest

Discussion

  • God as Liberator?

Reading Assignments

  • Joshua
  • Collins, Introduction, 183–202.
  • Newsom and Ringe, Women’s Bible Commentary, 69–72.
  • Patte, Global Bible Commentary, 64–73.
  • Robert Warrior, “A Native American Perspective: Canaanites, Cowboys, and Indians,” Voices from the Margin, 277–285.

Exegesis Paper Proposal Presentations I

 

9.  November 8          Judges and the Settlement

Discussion

  • Women in the book of Judges: Delilah

Reading Assignments

  • Judges
  • Collins, Introduction, 203–215.
  • Newsom and Ringe, Women’s Bible Commentary, 73–83.
  • Patte, Global Bible Commentary, 74–85.
  • J. Cheryl Exum, Plotted, Shot, and Painted, 175–237.

Exegesis Paper Proposal Presentations II

 

10.  November 15            The Rise of the House of David

Discussion

  • II Samuel 11–12:  David, Bathsheba, and Uriah the Hittite

Reading Assignments

  • I Samuel and II Samuel
  • Collins, Introduction, 217–44.
  • Newsom and Ringe, Women’s Bible Commentary, 91–101.
  • Patte, Global Bible Commentary, 92–104.
  • J. Cheryl Exum, Plotted, Shot, and Painted, 19–53.
  • Uriah Y. Kim, “Uriah the Hittite: A Con/Text of Struggle for Identity,” Semeia 90/91 (2002): 69–85.

Exegesis Paper Proposal Presentations III

 

11.  November 22            Reading Week

 

12.  November 29            Solomon and the Divided Kingdom

Discussion

  • I Kings 1: Something About Solomon

Reading Assignments

  • I Kings
  • Collins, Introduction, 245–60
  • Newsom and Ringe, Women’s Bible Commentary, 102­–116.
  • Patte, Global Bible Commentary, 105–118.

 

13.  December 6            The Fall of Samaria and Jerusalem

Discussion

  • II Kings 22–23: Josiah’s reform

Reading Assignments

  • II Kings
  • Collins, Introduction, 261–79
  • Uriah Y. Kim, “The Realpolitik of Liminality in Josiah’s Kingdom and Asian America,” Ways of Reading, Ways of Being (Jeffrey Kuan and Mary Foskett, eds., forthcoming).

 

14.  December 13            Final Examination

  • Exegetical Paper Due

Discussion

  • Hermeneutics Again
  • Feedback
 

Hartford Seminary  77 Sherman Street  Hartford, CT  06105   860-509-9500  info@hartsem.edu