University of Lausanne BiBIL
  Institut romand des sciences bibliques
  Biblical Bibliography of Lausanne - BiBIL
Administration Contact Impressum  
Notice details
Bibil Identifier bibil:151395
Publication Type Journal article
Title (English, Long) Priestly Power that Empowers: Michel Foucault, Middle-tier Levites, and the Sociology of "Popular Religious Groups" in Israel
Author Christian, Mark A.
Journal Journal of Hebrew Scriptures (Volume: 9, Issue: 1)
Undefined link Priestly Power that Empowers: Michel Foucault, Middle-tier Levites, and the Sociology of "Popular Religious Groups" in Israel
Year (Publication) 2009
Year (Copyright) 2009
Year (Original (1st Edition)) 2009
Year (Reference) 2009
Language English
Pages - Pages
Genre Original
Notes 80 pages.
Abstract The task of reconstructing the religious history of Israel can only be accomplished incrementally. Regarding methodology, if one chooses to engage the complexities of, say, the Israelite priesthood, synchronic analysis alone does not reveal its stages of development. Meticulous redactional analysis moreover exposes only aspects or phases of the sophisticated historiographies of the major writers in the preexilic, exilic, and postexilic periods and their grand schemas. One method of penetrating the pretense of uniformity is to approach the material through the use of analogy. Michel Foucault's work on power and knowledge informs the present study, in particular his concept of the distribution of power by “specialists.” The Levites' conflicted story needs no introduction, and its comprehensive transcription is not attempted here. Rather, drawing from biblical and wider ancient Near Eastern evidence, their activities as middle-tier “specialists” are outlined. The Levite in many instances locates professionally and socially between elite priests (living in larger cities) and populace (living in residential towns and villages). It is the itinerant, often times prophetically-infused Levite who, while maintaining the most contact with the general population, must at the same time maintain a viable connection with central authorities. Because his situation often necessitates collaboration with laity of dubious lineage, the Levite's priestly power turns out to be one that empowers.
Keywords Thesaurus BiBIL : Old Testament (Introduction) : Theology : Themes : Levites
Thesaurus BiBIL : Bible (as a whole) : History of Interpretation and Reception : Important Persons : 20th century : Foucault, Michel
Thesaurus BiBIL : Old Testament (Introduction) : History of Canaan-Israel : Themes : Scribe
Thesaurus BiBIL : Old Testament (Introduction) : Archaeology of Canaan-Israel : Periods : Iron Age (1200-586) : Iron II (1000-586)
Last modification 2017-10-27