Recent years have seen an explosion of writing on the history of Israel, prompted largely by definitive archaeological surveys and attempts to write a genuine archaeological history of ancient Israel and Judah. The scholarly world has also witnessed an intense confrontation between so-called minimalists and maximalists over the correct approach to the historicity of the Bible.
Memories of Ancient Israel: An Introduction to Biblical History-Ancient and Modern looks at the issues at stake in biblical history--the ideologies involved, the changing role of archaeology, and the influence of cultural contexts both ancient and modern.
Philip Davies suggests a different way of defining the problem of "reliability" and "historicity" by employing the theory of cultural memory. In doing so, he provides a better explanation of how ancient societies constructed their past but also a penetrating insight into the ideological underpinnings of today's scholarly debates.
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