Fino Alla Quarta Generazione: Revisione Di Leggi E Rinnovamento Religioso Nell’Israele Antico (To the Fourth Generation: Legal Revision and Religious Renewal in Ancient Israel)

Rome: Gregorian University and Pontifical Biblical Institute Press, 2012

Posted: 20 Jun 2012

Date Written: 2011

Abstract

This volume is translation of Bernard Levinson's book, Legal Revision and Religious Innovation in Ancient Israel (Cambridge University Press, 2008), into Italian.

This book examines the doctrine of transgenerational punishment found in the Decalogue: the idea that God punishes sinners vicariously and extends the punishment due them to three or four generations of their progeny. Already in ancient Israel, even though it was a “God-given” law, the unfairness of punishing innocent people merely for being the children or grandchildren of wrongdoers was clearly recognized. A series of inner-biblical and post-biblical responses to the rule demonstrates that later writers were able to criticize, reject, and replace this problematic doctrine with the alternative notion of individual retribution. From this perspective, the formative canon is the source of its own renewal: it fosters critical reflection upon the textual tradition and sponsors intellectual freedom.

To round out the volume, a final chapter provides a valuable bibliographical essay on the distinctive approach of “inner-biblical exegesis.” This resource will support further study and shows the contributions of European, Israeli, and North American scholars. The volume opens new perspectives on current debates within the humanities about canonicity, textual authority, and authorship. There is an extended discussion of the formation of the German literary canon (Mme de Stael; Heinrich Heine and the "portatives Kanon") and of German intellectual history (Immanuel Kant).

Abstract for the Italian edition:

Questo libro esamina la dottrina della punizione «fino alla quarta generazione» presente nel Decalogo. Benché questa fosse una legge «di origine divina», il fatto di punire innocenti solo perché figli o nipoti di malfattori fu apertamente considerato ingiusto da parte dell’Israele antico. Gli autori di epoca successiva erano in grado di criticare, rifiutare e addirittura sostituire questa dottrina problematica con la nozione alternativa di retribuzione individuale. Il canone in via di formazione costituisce la fonte del suo stesso rinnovamento: esso favorisce una riflessione critica sulla tradizione testuale e promuove la libertà intellettuale. Grazie a questa creativa impresa ermeneutica gli scribi riuscirono a travasare il nuovo nell’antico; soltanto così l’antica parola divina poté sostenere ancora e per sempre la vita del popolo.

Il volume, al fine di incoraggiare ulteriori approfondimenti, include un prezioso saggio bibliografico sui diversi approcci all’esegesi intra-biblica, presentando i contributi di studiosi europei, israeliani e nordamericani.

The English version of this document can be found at: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1850904

A versão em português deste artigo pode ser encontrada em: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2085496

La version française de ce document se trouvent à: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1858808

Dies titel ist auch in deutsch erhältlich bei: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2080486

Keywords: Decalogue, Divine Justice, Canon, Intertextuality, Allusion, Immanuel Kant, inner-biblical exegesis, relecture, Fortschreibung, Kanon, Textuality, Literary Theory, Hammurabi, Vassal Treaty of Esarhaddon, scribal curriculum, Ruth, Authorship, Hittite Laws, Decalogo, all’esegesi intra-biblica

Suggested Citation

Levinson, Bernard M., Fino Alla Quarta Generazione: Revisione Di Leggi E Rinnovamento Religioso Nell’Israele Antico (To the Fourth Generation: Legal Revision and Religious Renewal in Ancient Israel) (2011). Rome: Gregorian University and Pontifical Biblical Institute Press, 2012, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2085494

Bernard M. Levinson (Contact Author)

University of Minnesota ( email )

245 Nicholson Hall
216 Pillsbury Dr., SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455-0229
United States
612-625-4323 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://levinson.umn.edu/

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