Author Archives: Andrew Battista

About Andrew Battista

Andrew Battista is Librarian for Geospatial Information Systems at New York University

The Servant Songs

Next week, on Wednesday, we’ll be reading some sections of II and III Isaiah.  In addition to the selections indicated, please read Harold Bloom on the Suffering Servant.  This is a section from his book, Jesus and Yahweh:  The Names Divine.  … Continue reading

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Stuff We Don’t Have Time to Cover in Class

Good evening everyone. We’re in the thick of essay writing and mid-term studying, and there’s also a lot going on in class, probably too much to cover and still have an informed discussion of Amos and Isaiah. So please read … Continue reading

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Amos and the Radical Redistribution of Society

Marc Brettler classifies the book of Amos as a work of classical prophecy, situated within the larger tradition of biblical prophecy in the OT.  The literary and rhetorical approach of OT prophecy differs drastically from “historical writings,” yet its themes … Continue reading

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Reading Focus: 1 Samuel 18-23; 2 Samuel 1. We’ve already seen how clothes function as a metaphors in the Joseph cycle.  The motif appears again in 1 Samuel (in many places, but most notably when David and Jonathan exchange clothing … Continue reading

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Judges and Terrorism

When reading through Judges, please consider especially chapters 13-16 There are several well-known episodes in the book of Judges, but perhaps none has drawn more attention recently than the account of Samson.   Samson’s calling as a Nazarite leader, his strength, … Continue reading

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Midterm Study Guide

On Friday, one week from today, we’ll have our midterm examination.  Everything we’ve covered in the class thus far is fair game, including what we’ve read and what we’ve discussed in class.  Remember, that to whom much is given, even more is … Continue reading

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Writing About Literature Readings

A couple more words on writing.  Remember that by this Friday everyone should have responded with insight to at least three topic prospectus posts on the blog.  I encourage everyone to have an ongoing dialogue throughout the writing process. On … Continue reading

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Deuteronomy and Revisionist History

During the early part of this coming week, we’ll complete our reading of the Torah with Deuteronomy.  At first, it might seem odd that the book of Deuteronomy repeats many of the laws already mentioned in other places during the … Continue reading

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Egypt’s Last Pharaoh? Exodus and American Democracy

During the last few weeks that we have been reading Exodus, another ongoing revolution is occurring in present-day Egypt.  Egypt’s citizens have taken to the streets and rioted in demonstration against the rule of Prime Minister Hosni Mubarak, who has … Continue reading

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Holiness and Leviticus: A Reading Guide to Prepare for Class

Leviticus is a radical departure from Exodus in many ways.  Instead of protracted narratives that are filled with tense moments, we have a series of laws and rituals that could seem strange to many of us.  Much of the text … Continue reading

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Exodus and Theodicy

One of the great scenes in the OT occurs in the beginning of Exodus (3:11-14), where God confronts Moses by a burning bush.  After some discussion between the two figures, God refuses to provide Moses with a name for himself, saying … Continue reading

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Class on Friday at B35 in Young Library

Hello everyone.  This post is a reminder that on Friday, Feb. 4 (tomorrow) we will be meeting in the Young Library to talk about research strategies for our major writing projects.  Please plan accordingly!

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Joseph, Clothing, and Theology

Even though Dolly Parton sang so earnestly and nostalgically of Joseph’s coat of many colors, biblical scholars have taken a closer look at the text and have concluded that there’s nothing there that indicates the coat Joseph received was anything … Continue reading

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Abraham, Isaac, and Covenant

On Friday, we’ll be reading the ‘Akedh, or the 22nd chapter of Genesis that recounts the near killing of Isaac by Abraham and the institution of the covenant.  To prepare for our discussion, you’ll want to read Gen. 22, and … Continue reading

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Some Translation Questions from the Creation Account

On Wednesday’s class, we spent some time talking about the translation of the Bible’s first sentence.  One of the first and most important scholars to take up the debate of translating Gen. 1:1 was E.A. Speiser.  In his Anchor Bible … Continue reading

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