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In The Unity of the Hebrew Bible , David Noel Freedman brings his unique perspective and unparalleled scholarly talents to bear on an analysis of the composition of this ancient work. The author's years of experience in writing and lecturing about Scripture enable him to demonstrate to a lay audience that the Hebrew Bible is the work of a single man or a very small group making deliberate choices and decisions, organizing and arranging the numerous books into a larger whole that is structurally unified and conveys a meaning beyond the content of any single part.
While it may be conventionally held that the Hebrew Bible is divided into three major sections, the author's analysis instead suggests that these segments may be joined into a coherent whole. The author makes a slight but significant adjustment in the work's perceived organization, by linking the Former Prophets with the Torah and joining the Latter Prophets to the Writings. In so doing, he reveals that the Torah and the Former Prophets constitute a single major narrative rather than a series of independently conceived writings. Further, this simple but powerful revision enables Freedman to consider the remaining portions of the Hebrew Bible as distinctive wholes, yet fitted each to the other to form an even larger and more impressive structure.
Delivered originally as lectures in the Distinguished Senior Faculty Lecture Series at the University of Michigan, The Unity of the Hebrew Bible will carry its unusual message to an audience of lay persons and scholars alike—to all who are interested in the history and literature of the Mideast, in biblical scholarship, and in textual theory and transmission.
Lecture 1. The Primary History 1
Lecture 2. The Latter Prophets 41
Lecture 3. The Writings 75