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“And Jacob Set Up A Pillar At Her Grave...”: Material Memorials And Landmarks In The Old Testament

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Chapter Summary

Memorials are landmarks, both in the landscapes of reality as in the landscapes of imagination, as it is found in 18th and early 19th Century painting.This chapter examines both the meaning of such memorials in the landscapes of reality and in the landscapes of imagination, as well as their function for cultural memory. In Gen 35:20 Jacob sets up a steleform memorial at the grave of his wife, which has died in childbirth on the way to Bethlehem/Ephrath. Isaiah 56:4-5 reflects the universalistic tendency of the whole composition Isaiah 56-66 with its openness to foreigners to participate in the covenant of Yahweh and the salvation by the God of Israel. The monument that Saul has erected for himself in 1 Samuel 15:12 is the reference to a victory stele set up by an Israelite king. The textual evidence witnessing material memorials for the dead stands square to the archaeological evidence.

Keywords: 1 Samuel 15:12; archaeological evidence; Bethlehem; Isaiah 56:4-5; Jacob; material memorials; steleform memorial; Yahweh



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