Deeper Reasons for the Bias in Biblical Studies

There is a liberal slant in biblical studies, but it has an older and more persistent source than merely the general liberalism or leftism of today’s academy.

Looking closely at the Hebrew Bible. iStockPhoto/tzahiV.

Looking closely at the Hebrew Bible. iStockPhoto/tzahiV.

Response
July 17 2017
About the author

Jon D. Levenson is the Albert A. List Professor of Jewish Studies at Harvard University and the author, most recently, of The Love of God: Divine Gift, Human Gratitude, and Mutual Faithfulness in Judaism (Library of Jewish Ideas; Princeton University Press), which has recently been reissued in paperback.


Joshua Berman’s essay, “The Corruption of Biblical Studies,” is an insightful and eloquent discussion of some of the outstanding problems in the discipline of which we are both members, and it offers some wise counsel about how, ideally, the discipline can set itself aright. Although I do not dispute his observations about the history that has brought us to this pass, I think the problem is somewhat larger, deeper and, sadly, less amenable to correction than he implies. Let me briefly explain.

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More about: Academia, Biblical criticism, History & Ideas, Liberalism, Religion & Holidays