Monday, July 20, 2009

New Book on the Tabernacle

A new book on the tabernacle is coming out and looks interesting: Israel's Tabernacle as Social Space by Mark George. I am interested, at least, because I have a lot of work on the Tabernacle in Exodus 25-31, 35-40 and its later understandings in later texts in my dissertation. I am also interested in constructions/conceptions of space (and time) vis-a-vis the sanctuary, so this looks very relevant for me.

Here's the blurb:
The narratives about Israel’s tabernacle are neither a building blueprint nor simply a Priestly conceit securing priestly prominence in Israel. Using a spatial poetics to reexamine these narratives, George argues that the Priestly writers encode a particular understanding of Israel’s identity and self-understanding in tabernacle space. His examination of Israel’s tabernacle narratives makes space itself the focus of analysis and in so doing reveals the social values, concerns, and ideas that inform these narratives. Through a process of negotiation and exchange with the broader social and cultural world, the Priestly writers portray Israel as having an important role in the divine economy, one that is singularly expressed by this portable structure.

Mark K. George is Associate Professor of Hebrew Bible at Iliff School of Theology in Denver, Colorado. The author of various articles and essays, he also is organizer and chair of the SBL’s Space, Place, and Lived Experience in Antiquity Section.

Hardback edition available from Brill Academic Publishers (

Spatial poetics...I will be looking forward to it.

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