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Rahab of Jericho: The Power of Storytelling

By Andrzej Toczyski

H. C. Goddard once wrote that “the destiny of the world is determined less by the battles that are lost and won than by the stories it loves and believes in”.1 In fact stories have shaped the beliefs of individuals and communities since the dawn of civilisation. They have either moved people to action or prevented them from so doing and have thus played a significant role in shaping people’s perceptions of history See complete essay


Roman Days, Jewish Nights, and the Gospel Calendar Problem

By Gary Greenberg

At the time of Jesus, the Roman calendar day began at about sunrise, and in the Jewish calendar the day began at about sunset. That means that every Jewish calendar day overlapped two different Roman calendar days and every Roman calendar day overlapped two different Jewish calendar days. In this essay I would like to draw attention to some chronological problems in the gospel accounts caused by the authors using the Roman calendaring system to date events in Jerusalem that unfolded according to a Jewish calendaring system. See complete essay


Mapping Palestine

By Philip R Davies

It was one of the founding figures of general semantics, Alford Korzybski, who made the famous comment that ‘A map is not the territory it represents’ (Korzybski 1958: 58). The phrase was adapted by Jonathan Z. Smith for the title of his most influential book (Smith 1978) and might be said to encapsulate much of the work of my friend and colleague Keith Whitelam, who has long been interested in themes of spatial and historical representations as ideological constructs. See complete essay


A New ‘Biblical Archaeology’

By Philip R Davies

To expound the principles of ‘new biblical archaeology’ I begin with a short retrospect on what was called ‘Minimalism’. This was of course a term coined by opponents, which entirely missed the point by focusing on the (minimal) extent of biblical narrative held to contain reliable historical data. ‘Minimalist’ was attached to a small number of scholars who were supposed to form a ‘school’. See complete essay


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