Cultures & Contexts: Ancient Israel
The history and culture of the ancient Israelite societies of biblical times and the Greco-Roman period seen from the perspective of the process of urbanization and the role of cities in the development of classical Judaism, covering the period from c. 1250 b.c.e. through the third century c.e. Surveys the history and achievements of these cities and their contribution to the development of law and social organization, prophetic movements, history of Israelite religion and early Judaism, and the background of Christianity. The Bible and ancient Jewish texts preserve much evidence for the history of ancient Israel; and archaeological excavations, as well as the discovery of ancient writings in Hebrew and related languages, have added to our knowledge. In addition, new discoveries in the Dead Sea Scrolls contribute greatly to our understanding of the history of Judaism and the emergence of Christianity. Throughout, we remain focused on the growth of cities and their role in the creation and development of ancient Israel’s culture and literature.