Religious Studies | Studies in the History of Judaism
R541 | 3745 | Tba

R445 Topics in the History of Judaism: The Dead Sea Scrolls (3 Cr.)
MW 6:00-7:00 PM (section 3741) Professor Michael Satlow

The discovery of the Dead Sea scrolls about fifty years ago has
revolutionized our understanding of ancient Judaism and Christianity.
Written around the turn of the era (second century BCE - first century
CE) by a separatist Jewish group, the Dead Sea scrolls raise a wide range
of questions: Did their authors live at the nearby settlement of Qumran?
Were they the Essenes described by ancient classical authors?  Why did
they separate?  How did they understand the religion that they practiced
and what was their ritual life like?  What is the relationship between
their brand of messianism and apocalypticism and that of other Jewish and
early Christian communities? We will read all of the scrolls available in
translation and attempt to apply contemporary theories of religion to
them.  Meets with R445.