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What Is Cush Doing in Amos 9:7? The Poetics of Exodus in the Plural*

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image of Vetus Testamentum

AbstractMost scholars believe that Cush is mentioned in Amos 9:7 because it is a remote place, and that Cush’s geographical distance is thus the point of its comparison with Israel in this verse. The present essay argues instead that the verse displays a complex poetic structure (comparable to, but not identical with, aspects of staircase parallelism, synonymous-sequential parallelism, and sorites) which connects Cush to the exodus activities of Yahweh mentioned later in the verse. A Cushite “migration” that is akin to those of Israel, the Philistines, and Aram, can be found in the 25th Dynasty, which is contemporaneous with the horizon of the prophet Amos and his book.

Affiliations: 1: Emory


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