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Fitting a Square Peg into a Round Hole: Categorizing Works of Jewish Historiography of the Second Temple Period

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The categories of Jewish historiography of the Second Temple Period frame how scholars and their students approach crucial texts of this era and therefore shape our understanding of history. Yet, these categories are fraught with difficulties. This article explores this issue by examining Daniel R. Schwartz’s categorization of Second Temple historiography as either Palestinian or diasporan works. While these categories provide interesting insights, they also leave far too many exceptions. This article demonstrates that such efforts of categorization warp our understanding of Second Temple historiography. Rather than categorize Second Temple historiography I suggest that each work ought to be considered from the point of view of its author’s aims.

Affiliations: 1: Judaic Studies Department, University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, OHUSA finkelai@ucmail.uc.edu

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1. Amir Y."“Philo’s Version of Pilgrimage to Jerusalem.”" Jerusalem in the Second Temple Period: Abraham Schalit Memorial Volume Oppenheimer Aaron, Rappaport Uriel, Stern Menahem Jerusalem Yad Ben-Zvi 1980 154 165 Hebrew
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23. Rajak Tessa"“The Against Apion and the Continuities in Josephus’ Political Thought.”" The Jewish Dialogue Between Greece and Rome: Studies in Cultural and Social Interaction Rajak Tessa Leiden Brill 2002 195 217
24. Schürer Emil Geschichte des jüdischen Volkes im Zeitalter Jesu Christi 2 vols. Leipzig Hinrichs 1886 1890
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2018-03-12
2018-10-17

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