Scholars who argue for Persian era authorship of Torah

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rgprice
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Scholars who argue for Persian era authorship of Torah

Post by rgprice »

What are the major works that argue for dating the writing of the Pentateuch to the Persian era?
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Secret Alias
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Re: Scholars who argue for Persian era authorship of Torah

Post by Secret Alias »

Who doesn't? I just assume it's the normative position. There are a few stragglers who cling to the Babylonian Exile. But it's all (as far as I know) Persian era.
rgprice
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Re: Scholars who argue for Persian era authorship of Torah

Post by rgprice »

So what would be considered seminal works that argue this position?
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Secret Alias
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Re: Scholars who argue for Persian era authorship of Torah

Post by Secret Alias »

Well. Konrad Schmid wrote a lot of recent papers on it. But again how many papers are written on the sky being blue? What are the options? Before the Babylonian Exile? Doesn't seem to fit any of the evidence. There is a ton of ancient reporting of Ezra as the author of the Torah. Even the rabbinic tradition. So all the evidence goes one way. Is it perfect? No. Are there arguments for before or after the Persian period? Yes. But most of the evidence goes in the direction of the Persian period.
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neilgodfrey
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Re: Scholars who argue for Persian era authorship of Torah

Post by neilgodfrey »

One work you will want to read:
SA would want to read it too, because it discusses details like the absence of Persian loan words and even the absence of the mention of Jerusalem -- but above all for Konrad Schmid's opening lines:
The topic of this article pertains to the problems of dating biblical texts. As is well known, this area is contested and hotly debated in biblical studies, and it is very hard to rely on any kind of consensus.1 For some scholars, the Pentateuch does not include any Persian period texts, but was already (basically) complete in the early 6th century.2 For others, the Pentateuch is basically a product of the Persian or even Hellenistic period.3 The very fact that such highly divergent positions are maintained by serious scholars shows that there is no way of proving a Persian date for specific Pentateuchal texts. All we can do is assess the likelihood of competing theories.



1 Cf. e. g., O. H. Steck, Old Testament Exegesis: A Guide to the Methodology (2nd ed.; Atlanta: SBL, 1998), 143–150. Some more recent contributions to the discussion of linguistic dating include D.-H. Kim, Early Biblical Hebrew, Late Biblical Hebrew, and Linguistic Variability: A Sociolinguistic Evaluation of the Linguistic Dating of Biblical Texts (VTSup 156; Leiden: Brill, 2013); C. Miller-Naudé and Z. Zevit (eds.), Diachrony in Biblical Hebrew (LSAWS 8; Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 2012); A. Hornkohl, “Biblical Hebrew: Periodization,” in Encyclopedia of Hebrew Language and Linguistics (ed. G. Khan; Leiden: Brill, 2014), 1:315–325; R. Rezetko and I. Young, Historical Linguistics and Biblical Hebrew: Steps Toward an Integrated Approach (ANEM 9; Atlanta: SBL, 2014).

2 Cf. e. g., I. Knohl, The Sanctuary of Silence (Minneapolis: Fortress, 1995; repr. Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 2007); J. Stackert, A Prophet Like Moses: Prophecy, Law, and Israelite Religion (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014), 31–35.

3 Cf. the discussion e. g., in K. Schmid, “Der Abschluss der Tora als exegetisches und historisches Problem,” in Schriftgelehrte Traditionsliteratur: Fallstudien zur innerbiblischen Schriftauslegung im Alten Testament (FAT 77; Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2011), 159–184; T. Römer, “Der Pentateuch,” in Die Entstehung des Alten Testaments (ed. W. Dietrich et al.; ThW 1,1; Stuttgart: Kohlhammer, 2014), 53–110.
Not exactly a "sky is blue" perspective.
rgprice
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Re: Scholars who argue for Persian era authorship of Torah

Post by rgprice »

I understand that Neil, but I'm trying to identify the most widely accepted and astute arguments in favor or Persian dating, or even to the idea that Ezra created the Pentateuch. I want to be able to cite the most highly regarded works/scholars in favor of Persian dating when laying out the case for Hellenistic dating.
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neilgodfrey
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Re: Scholars who argue for Persian era authorship of Torah

Post by neilgodfrey »

My quoted section was directed at those who drop the names of scholars whom they clearly have not read in any depth and whom they wrongly think offer support for their own views and some imaginary "sky is blue" consensus. Hence I addressed it explicitly to the first to reply to your question.

If I understand your request I do not think such works exist. The argument creeps in via the assumptions and conventional wisdom in text books. Articles like the one I referenced are the closest you'll get to fulsome arguments.
rgprice
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Re: Scholars who argue for Persian era authorship of Torah

Post by rgprice »

Looks like, Konrad Schmid's The Old Testament: A Literary History is pretty good for my purposes.
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