Approaches to Teaching the Hebrew Bible as Literature in Translation

  • Editors: Barry N. Olshen, Yael S. Feldman
  • Pages: x & 156 pp.
  • Published: 1989
  • ISBN: 9780873525237 (Cloth)
  • ISBN: 9780873525244 (Paperback)
Approaches to Teaching the Hebrew Bible as Literature in Translation Cover

“For beginning teachers (especially those whose graduate training was in fields tangential to the Hebrew Bible), the bibliographic section of this book is an absolute necessity and the approaches section will offer many valuable suggestions. But even for experienced teachers, this is a recommended tool for integrating new resources into one’s teaching and trying new techniques in the classroom.”

Critical Review of Books in Religion

Literary-critical approaches to the Hebrew Bible have influenced courses in secondary schools, colleges, and universities throughout North America—and courses in a variety of disciplines, including English, Hebrew, comparative literature, theology, religious studies, history, sociology, anthropology, and archaeology. Approaches to Teaching the Hebrew Bible as Literature in Translation will therefore serve many teachers, from those who wish to incorporate sections of the Bible into literature courses to those who wish to adopt interdisciplinary strategies for presenting the Bible to their students.

The volume, like others in the MLA’s Approaches to Teaching World Literature series, is divided into two parts. The first part, “Materials,” surveys translations and editions of the Hebrew Bible, recommended readings for students, background materials for teachers, and works of literary criticism. In the second part, “Approaches,” teachers suggest ways to present the Bible in the classroom. The first three essays discuss the challenges of studying the Bible in translation and teaching the differences between Tanakh (Jewish Scriptures) and the Old Testament (Christian Scriptures). The next eight essays demonstrate the application of specific pedagogical and theoretical approaches—socioliterary, textual, feminist, comparative—to the Bible as a whole. The last eight essays suggest ways of teaching parts of the Bible, including the genealogy in Genesis, the flood story, Exodus 32, the prophetic literature, Psalm 23, Ruth, Job, and the Song of Songs.