Description: "There is a generally accepted notion in biblical scholarship that the Bible as we know it today is the product of editing from its earliest stages of composition through to its final, definitive and 'canonical' textual form. So persistent has been this idea since the rise of critical study in the seventeenth century and so pervasive has it become in all aspects of biblical study that there is virtually no reflection on the validity of this idea" (from the Introduction). Van Seters proceeds to survey the history of the idea of editing, from its origins in the pre-Hellenistic Greek world, through Classical and Medieval times, into the modern era. He discusses and evaluates the implications of the common acceptance of "editing" and "editors/redactors" and concludes that this strand of scholarship has led to serious misdirection of research in modern times.
Subjects: Bible, Hebrew Bible / Old Testament, Literature, Methods, Historical Approaches, History, Form, Tradition and Redaction Criticism, History of Interpretation
Review by Eckart Otto
Citation: Eckart Otto, review of John Van Seters, The Edited Bible: The Curious History of the “Editor” in Biblical Criticism, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2007).
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