This course is an introduction to the contents of the Hebrew Bible (often called the Old Testament by Christians, Tanak by Jews), and to the historical conditions that gave rise to and shaped them. Our goals include your familiarity with selected aspects of the ancient Near Eastern context; the contents (including organization, distinct genres, story lines, and select passages) of the Hebrew Bible; scholarly perspectives on Israel's formation and history, and the way that history shaped these writings; awareness of different interpretive stances among different communities today.
- Analyze and discern different interpretive stances among different Jewish and Christian communities regarding the Hebrew Bible.
- Know the ancient Near Eastern context and culture during the time of the writings.
- Know the content of the Hebrew Bible and the historical conditions that gave rise to and shaped the writings.
- Know the history and the formation of Israel.
- Recognize the organization, distinct genre, story lines and selected passages of the Hebrew Bible.
- Demonstrate awareness of the scope and variety of works in the arts and humanities.
- Understand those works as expressions of individual and human values within a historical and social context.
- Respond critically to works in the arts and humanities.
- Engage in the creative process or interpretive performance.
- Articulate an informed personal reaction to works in the arts and humanities.