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"Sitting By The Waters Of Dan, Or The "Tricky Business" Of Tracing The Social Profile Of The Communities That Produced The Earliest Enochic Texts

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Chapter Summary

Sometimes social-scientific and anthropological models are too hastily applied to the texts almost without noticing the literary nature of the works under scrutiny. This chapter devotes to the question of the existence of one or more Enochic communities and how Enoch scholars conceptualize them. It describes threefold socio-rhetorical analysis, and draws some conclusions about the people behind Enochic texts and traditions. The discussions held during the first two meetings of the "Enoch Seminar", organized by Gabriele Boccaccini, were also extremely beneficial for the clarification of the different issues at stake in the contemporary scholarly debate. The possibility of the existence of some Enochic groups perhaps as large and developed as to constitute organized communities is suggested by the uninterrupted sedimentation of the Enochic traditions and texts. A limited number of social and cultural values have left their imprints on the Book of the Watchers.

Keywords: cultural values; enochic texts; Enochic traditions; Gabriele Boccaccini; social profile; socio-rhetorical analysis



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