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Old Wisdom And The Written Law

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Chapter Summary

This chapter outlines the scope and limitations of economic analysis in biblical Wisdom literature, with special reference to the older sections of the Book of Proverbs. It surveys the economic content of the wide-ranging legal codes upon which the non-oral elements of the talmudic tradition are based. There is a good deal of common ground between Old Wisdom and the post-metaphysical tradition of modern Western thought in which Economics has attained the status of a distinct discipline. Whatever the point of entry or the intended audience of Old Wisdom, it is clear that its exponents were involved in economic analysis at the micro level. Given the association of Wealth and Wisdom, it is understandable that the Book of Proverbs pays attention to the factors involved in the attainment of riches. In the economies of antiquity, slaves were crucial elements in the structure of private and public capital.

Keywords: Book of Proverbs ; economic analysis; Old Wisdom; talmudic tradition



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