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Polarized Self-Identification In The Qumran Texts

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Chapter Summary

In an article published in 1999 in the Festschrift for Heinz Wolfgang Kuhn, the chapter takes up the issue of Qumran sectarianism and argues that a group of texts evidently authored in the yahad or a closely related group reflects a world view that ?portrays [the author?s] group as the sole and exclusive arena of salvation and thus sees those who are not members of that community as cut off from God?s favor and bound for damnation.? In a response to this article, Carol Newsom suggested that it would be useful set this world view and de facto definition in a continuum that takes into consideration texts whose world view and self-understanding were not as narrow as the Community Rule, the Damascus Document, the Pesharim, the Hodayot, parts of 1 Enoch, and the Book of Jubilees. The chapter makes a few observations about two other texts in the Qumran corpus.

Keywords: Book of Jubilees; Community Rule; Damascus Document; Enoch; Hodayot; Pesharim; Qumran corpus; Qumran sectarianism; self-understanding; yahad



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