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Intertexts and Cultural Contexts between Wisdom and Torah_Workshop_Updated_ver2-2_call for paper.pdf

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Wisdom and Torah as Dynamic Modes of Scribal Discourse in Israel and Early Judaism: Beyond Biblical Genres and Traditions 2019 The New Research Unit Proposal (EABS) Warsaw, Poland, 11-14 August 2019
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  1 Wisdom and Torah as Dynamic Modes of Scribal Discourse in Israel and Early Judaism : Beyond Biblical Genres and Traditions   2019 The New Research Unit Proposal (EABS) Warsaw, Poland, 11-14 August 2019 1   Chair: Jiseong James Kwon (Universität Zürich)Co-Charis: Benedikt Hensel (Universität Zürich); Tobias Häner (Universität Wien) 1.   Title: Wisdom and Torah as Dynamic Modes of Scribal Discourse in Israel and Early  Judaism: Beyond Biblical Genres and Traditions  2.   Keywords Wisdom and Torah; Intertextuality; Pentateuch; The Second Temple Period; Wisdom/Mosaic Discourse 3.   Programme of the research unit This workshop examines the long-standing assumption that there was a confluence between Wisdom and Torah in the Second Temple Judaism; whether Wisdom is torahised or Torah is sapientialised (Von Rad, Hengel, Schnabel, Sheppard, Blenkinsopp, Collins, Sanders). Yet, this assumption is heavily rooted in misconceptions of the wisdom tradition and the connection of Wisdom-Torah. First of all, scholars studying wisdom literature in Israel and early Judaism have in recent times called in question the feasibility of defining wisdom genre and the fixed lineation of “wisdom tradition” and have been inclined to cease using those muddy terms without any distinction (Weeks, Sneed). Instead of the genre compartment traditionally used by traditional-historical methodology, they prefer speaking of wisdom texts as “a mode of discourse”/“a mode of literature”, 1  rather than speaking of a sort of classifying “wisdom” as the generic genre, the particular ideology, the systematized thought-structure, or the interpretive framework for late writings. 2  Furthermore, the presupposition of a genre/tradition of wisdom in ancient Judaism has led scholars to assume that “wisdom” was ultimately transformed to the Torah, namely the Pentateuch or the Deuteronomic Torah. However, although the term “torah” 1  Stuart Weeks,  An Introduction to the Study of Wisdom Literature  (London: T&T Clark, 2010), 126 employs wisdom corpus “as the products of a particular mode of discourse”. Mark R. Sneed, The Social World of the Sages: An Introduction to Israelite and Jewish Wisdom Literature  (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2015), 215 uses “a mode of literature that was studied primarily by younger but also older scribes to help them develop their skill at moral discerment”. 2  In fact, the problem of defining such a biblical genre is also found in other literatures in Israelite and non-Israelite materials, and what we found out is that the modern conception of a genre that is modeled on an exclusive prototype does not, certainly, fit in biblical and Second Temple Jewish literature. See Hindy Najman, “Jewish Wisdom in the Hellenistic Period: Towards the Study of a Semantic Constellation,” in  Is There a Text in This Cave?: Studies in the Textuality of the Dead Sea Scrolls in Honour of George J. Brooke , STDJ 119 (Leiden; Boston: Brill, 2017), 459–72; “The Idea of Biblical Genre: From Discourse to Constellation,” in  Prayer and Poetry in the Dead Sea Scrolls and Related Literature , STDJ 98 (Leiden; Boston: Brill, 2012), 307– 21.  2 in the Second Temple period has been usually used as an authoritative tradition of collective writings, it is not exclusively referring to the specific text of the Pentateuch, but probably to the Mosaic discourse with all-encompassing traditions of biblical narrative, law, and even interpretation (e.g., 4Q252, the Temple Scroll, and Jubilees). Therefore, when talking about the correlation (if there is any) between Wisdom and Torah, this workshop prefers the idea of wisdom/torah as “a dynamic mode of scribal discourse”, where a literature participates in cultural “dialogues”, not constrained by separate “traditions” or “generic biblical genres”, to the concept of literary influence/dependency or the interdependency between idiosyncratic traditions (e.g., the edited volume, “Wisdom and Torah: The Reception of “Torah” in the Wisdom Literature of the Second Temple Period”). 3  In other words, this group will explore how wisdom materials and the Mosaic discourse as collections of cultural texts  (Kristeva, Genette, Culler) are interrelated linguistically, sociologically, and historically in the Second Temple period. 4.   Description of the planned research This workshop will search for Israelite and Jewish wisdom texts as “dynamic modes of cultural discourse” in the relationship with the Mosaic discourse including Pentateuchal narratives and laws, and their diverse interpretations. 4  For the purpose, this suggested group concentrates on the collective knowledge such as the cultural idea, value, and theology in the Second Temple  period through intertexts between wisdom materials and the Mosaic discourse. When “wisdom” materials are appreciated as “a discourse” in the complicated web with other “intertexts”, not as a distinctive literary tradition composed by a professional group of sages, what are methodological problems of the claim concerning the confluence/identification between Wisdom and Torah in early Judaism? How can we reformulate the model of Wisdom-Torah transformation or identification in Jewish sapiential texts such as Ben Sira and Qumran sapiential texts (4Q525, 4Q185, 4Qinstruction, 4Q424, the Book of Mysteries)? How is Deuteronomic/Deuteronomistic theology in the Mosaic discourse correlated with the discourse of wisdom? 5.   The text of the Call for Papers for the upcoming year. This workshop organises two sessions in Warsaw 2019. The first session invites papers that address Israelite and Jewish wisdom texts as “dynamic modes of cultural discourse” in the relationship with the Mosaic discourse including Pentateuchal narrative, law, and diverse interpretations. The second session welcomes papers that deal with certain intertexts between Wisdom—Proverbs/Job/Ecclesiastes/Ben Sira/Wisdom of Solomon/Baruch/Qumran sapiential texts [4Q525, 4Q185, 4Qinstruction, 4Q424, the Book of Mysteries], etc—and Mosaic discourses—laws (legal texts), narratives, and interpretations including Apocrypha and Qumran materials—in the Second Temple period. 3  Bernd U. Schipper and David A. Teeter, eds., Wisdom and Torah: The Reception of “Torah” in the Wisdom  Literature of the Second Temple Period  , JSJSup 163 (Leiden: Brill, 2013) Most essays in this volume indicate the interplay between the two distinctive traditions, and namely they evaluate it from the perspective of “Torah” reception in wisdom corpus or from the wisdom influence in Pentateuch. There is no problem in general, but it has old misconceptions of “wisdom” category. 4  Although studies of the Pentateuch and wisdom literature have been conducted among EABS research groups, there was not much endeavour to investigate the literary-historical intertexts between two literary units—Torah and Wisdom—from the new definition that wisdom text is seen as “a dynamic mode of discourse”. I, thus,  believe that this workshop would contribute to the conversation between the Pentateuch and the wisdom scholarship and further to the discussion from the HB scholars to the Apocrypha/Qumran/NT scholars.
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