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Resurrection of the Dead in Early Judaism: 200 BCE-CE 200
Elledge, C. D.

Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017 pp. xiii + 253. $95.00


Description: Resurrection of the dead represents one of the more enigmatic beliefs of Western religions to many modern readers. In this volume, C. D. Elledge offers an interpretation of some of the earliest literature within Judaism that exhibits a confident hope in resurrection. He not only aids the study of early Jewish literature itself, but expands contemporary knowledge of some of the earliest expressions of a hope that would become increasingly meaningful in later Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Elledge focuses on resurrection in the latest writings of the Hebrew Bible, the Apocrypha, Pseudepigrapha, Dead Sea Scrolls, as well as the writings of other Hellenistic Jewish authors. He also incorporates later rabbinic writings, early Christian sources, and inscriptions, as they shed additional light upon select features of the evidence in question. This allows for a deeper look into how particular literary works utilized the discourse of resurrection, while also retaining larger comparative insights into what these materials may teach us about the gradual flourishing of resurrection within its early Jewish environment. Individual chapters balance a more categorical/comparative approach to the problems raised by resurrection (definitions, diverse conceptions, historical origins, strategies of legitimation) with a more specific focus on particular pieces of the early Jewish evidence (1 Enoch, Dead Sea Scrolls, Josephus). Resurrection of the Dead in Early Judaism, 200 BCE-CE 200 provides a treatment of resurrection that informs the study of early Jewish theologies, as well as their later reinterpretations within Rabbinic Judaism and Christianity.

Subjects: Bible, Mishnah, Talmudic and Rabbinic Literature, Early Christian Literature, Literature

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Review by Joshua Schwartz
Published 3/1/2018
Citation: Joshua Schwartz, review of C. D. Elledge, Resurrection of the Dead in Early Judaism: 200 BCE-CE 200, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2018).


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