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Sumerian Literature And The Bible

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Chapter Summary

This chapter aims to explore the relationship between Sumerian literature and biblical literature, the most fruitful division is by genre, that is, by type of literary composition. It looks at the Sumerian literature of the common man and the genres that fall within that literature. The first genre is a rather tiny literary category-the riddle. It is typically a very short, proverbial saying, usually in the first person, in which the speaker gives clues about the character or thing he represents, and ends with the answer. Another popular wisdom genre was the disputation, which pitted against two contestants representing different professions, or products, or natural essences. The chapter talks about the contextual approach to biblical literature. The balance between comparison and contrast, or their combination in the appropriate proportions provides the overall context for the biblical text. The chapter discusses the concept of canonicity in cuneiform and biblical literature.

Keywords: biblical literature; Sumerian disputation; Sumerian literature; Sumerian riddle



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