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Reading Ritual: Leviticus in Postmodern Culture

, 2005
ISBN: 9780567040817
Enhanced for Logos

This book draws on a variety of disciplines to undertake a unique analysis of Leviticus 1-7. Rather than studying the rituals prescribed in Leviticus as arcane historical/theological texts of little interest to the modern reader or as examples of primitive rituals that have no parallel in Western society, this book provides many points of contact between animal sacrifice rituals and various parts of post-modern society. Modern rituals such as Monday Night Football, eating fast food, sending sons and daughters off to war, and even the rituals of modern academia are contrasted with the text of Leviticus. In addition, responses to Leviticus among modern African Christians and in the early church are used to draw out further understandings of how the language and practice of sacrifice still shapes the lives of people.

This study takes a consciously Christian perspective on Leviticus. Leviticus is assumed to be an ongoing part of the Christian Bible. The usual Christian response to Leviticus is to ignore it or to claim that all sacrifice has now been superseded by the sacrifice of Jesus. This study refutes those simplistic assertions, and attempts to reassert the place of Leviticus as a source for Christian self-understanding.

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“In most cases, the first question that is asked of a person at the scene of any event is ‘How do you feel?” (Page 2)

“about food. They are about animals used for food, as well as grain ground and eaten (or not” (Page 13)

“ call this form of participation imaginative performance.” (Page 8)

Product Details

  • Title: Reading Ritual: Leviticus in Postmodern Culture
  • Author: Wesley J. Bergen
  • Series: Journal for the Study of the Old Testament Supplement
  • Publisher: T. & T. Clark Publishers
  • Publication Date: 2005
  • Volume: 417
  • Pages: 160

Wesley J. Bergen is Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of Religion, Wichita State University, Wichita, Kansas.

The Journal for the Study of the Old Testament Supplement The Journal for the Study of the Old Testament Supplement (renamed the Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Studies in 2005) is a premier book series that offers cutting-edge work for a readership of scholars, teachers in the field of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament studies, postgraduate students and advanced undergraduates. All the diverse aspects of Old Testament study are represented and promoted in the series, including innovative work from historical perspectives, studies using social-scientific and literary theory, and developing theological, cultural and contextual approaches.

The series was launched by Sheffield Academic Press in 1976, and is published regularly by T & T Clark International as The Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Studies. This world-class religious academic publishing program is both interdisciplinary and international in scope, incorporating Sheffield Academic Press, T & T Clark and Trinity Press International.

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    Digital list price: $24.99
    Save $6.00 (24%)