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Biblical Archaeology as an Academic Discipline in Search of Its Academic Identity

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While the history of the term 'biblical archaeology' shows that it has no single meaning, debates on the disciplinary status of biblical archaeology point towards its long-standing struggle to define itself as a scholarly discipline. A critical discussion of these two aspects results in a rejection of the recent trend to define biblical archaeology as a subsidiary of biblical studies. Instead, it is suggested that biblical archaeology should be defined as a subspecies of general archaeology. This argument finds support in three features of general archaeology: the impetus Of new archaeology, the nature of archaeological scholarship and its interdisciplinary features.

Affiliations: 1: Department of New Testament University of South Africa P O Box 392, Pretoria, 0003 Republic of South Africa


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