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The Centre and the Periphery
A European Tribute to Walter Brueggemann
Edited by Jill Middlemas, David J.A. Clines, Else Holt

In this valuable volume, 13 scholars from Britain, Ireland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Germany pay tribute to Walter Brueggemann’s outstanding contribution to Old Testament studies, notably his Theology of the Old Testament (1997). His own setting is the USA, and it is not generally recognized how far-reaching his influence has been. This volume aims to demonstrate that many scholars in diverse locations have been stimulated by the sweep of his energetic criticism.

Brueggemann himself often speaks of Old Testament scholarship in terms of centre and margin, meaning thereby the dominant historical-critical mode of research as against the new types of analysis that have come into being in the last decades. He constantly has recourse also to the Hebrew Bible’s own tension between a mainstream centre with its testimony to Yahweh's power, providence and justice and a margin according to which the deity is called to account for failures in divine governance.

The essays in Part I are devoted to ‘centrist’ questions in the main, including contributions from Rainer Albertz, Katharine Dell, Frederik Lindström, Christoph Bultmann, and Hugh Williamson. The essays in Part II are from scholars who apply a range of alternative or ‘peripheral’ interpretative methods, Walter Moberly, Terje Stordalen, Jill Middlemas, Ulrich Berges, Mark Gray, Else Holt, Gordon McConville and David Clines.

Jill Middlemas is Associate Professor of Theology, University of Aarhus, Denmark.
David J.A. Clines is Professor of Biblical Studies at the University of Sheffield.
Else Holt is Associate Professor of Theology, University of Aarhus, Denmark.

Series: Hebrew Bible Monographs, 27
978-1-906055-86-8 hardback
Publication October 2010

Part I. ‘Centrist’ Questions

How Radical Must the New Beginning Be?
The Discussion between the Deutero-Isaiah and the Ezekiel School
Rainer Albertz

Solomon’s Wisdom and the Egyptian Connection
Katharine Dell

‘I am rousing the Chaldaeans’ – Regrettably?
Habakkuk 1.5-11 and the End of the Prophetic Theology of History
Fredrik Lindström

Patterns or Poetry in Jeremiah?
Introducing a Reader to the Twin Poems in Jeremiah 5 and 8
Christoph Bultmann

Reflections on Redaction
H.G.M. Williamson

Part II. ‘Peripheral’ Questions

Is Election Bad for You?
R. W. L. Moberly

Mother Earth in Biblical Hebrew Literature:
Ancient and Contemporary Imagination
Terje Stordalen

Exodus 3 and the Call of Moses: Re-reading the Signs
Jill Middlemas

How Babylon Became Merciless: A Subversive Re-reading of Isaiah 47.6
Ulrich Berges

Justice with Reconciliation: A Text for our Times.
The Rhetoric of Isaiah 58.6-10
Mark Gray

The Helpless Potentate: A Neglected Image in Jeremiah
Else K. Holt

Righteousness and the Divine Presence in Psalm 17
J. Gordon McConville

Coming to a Theological Conclusion: The Case of the Book of Job
David J.A. Clines

[T]he authors and editors of The Centre and the Periphery have provided traditional accounts of historical-critical scholarship, new methods, close readings, and a refusal to defer the larger theological questions that animate the Hebrew Bible and its readers … [T]his volume reflects well upon the author whose work it is meant to honor, both in the quality of its contributions and the wide range of interests he brought to bear on the field. Chad Eggleston, Review of Biblical Literature.