Fortress Press

Reconstructing Old Testament Theology: After the Collapse of History, Second Edition

Reconstructing Old Testament Theology

After the Collapse of History, Second Edition

Leo G. Perdue (Author), Walter Brueggemann (Editor)


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In this informative and keen look at contemporary trends in Old Testament theology, Perdue builds on his earlier volume The Collapse of History (1994). He investigates how a variety of perspectives and methodologies have impacted how the Old Testament is read in the twenty-first century including: literary criticism; rhetorical criticism, feminist, womanist, and mujerista theologies, liberation theology; Jewish theology; postmodernism; and postcolonialism.

Perdue provides a sensitive reading of the aims of these approaches as well as providing critique and setting them in their various cultural contexts. In his conclusion, the author provides a look at the future and how these various voices and approaches will continue to impact how we carry out Old Testament theology.

  • Publisher Fortress Press
  • ISBN 9780800637163
  • Format Paperback
  • Dimensions 5.5 x 8.5
  • Pages 416
  • Publication Date June 15, 2005


"Our common debt to Perdue for this book is very great. His close attention to detail, matched with a capacity to see the larger picture, means that he has in an inventive way formulated something of a 'canonical' account of current scholarship.... Perdue has made clear that every scholarly attempt now must take into account voices other than one's own. The point of that awareness is that every interpretive offer is kept open as penultimate, an important awareness in our culture where interpretation too much takes on the shrill tone of absoluteness."
— Walter Brueggemann, from the Editor's Foreword

Table of Contents

Editor's Foreword
  1. The Present Status of Old Testament Theology
    Reasons for the Collapse of History
    After the Collapse of History
    New Approaches: The Fundamental Assumptions
    Description of the Present Task

  2. From History as Event to the History of Religion: Religionsgeschichte and Biblical Theology
    The History of Religion and/or Biblical Theology?
    The Theology of Jeremiah and the History of Religion

  3. From Eurocentric History to Voices from the Margins: Liberation Theology and Ethnic Biblical Interpretation
    Liberation Theology in Latin America
    Segovia's Theology of the Diaspora
    African American Theology and Biblical Interpretation
    Jeremiah and a Theology of the Diaspora
    Jeremiah and African American Biblical Theology

  4. From Exclusion to Inclusion: Feminist Interpretations of History
    Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza
    Discovering Eve: Carol Meyer's Feminist Social History of Ancient Israel
    A Critical Feminist Liberationist Interpretation of the Book of Jeremiah

  5. From History to Rhetoric: Feminist, Mujerista, and Womanist Theologies
    Feminist Literary Critics and Biblical Interpretation
    Feminist Metaphorical Theology: Sallie McFague
    Recapturing the Language of Zion: Rhetorical Criticism and Feminist Hermeneutics
    Womanist Biblical Interpretation
    Mujerista Biblical Interpretation

  6. From Jewish Tradition to Biblical Theology: The Tanakh as a Source for Jewish Theology and Practice
    Jews Who Do Biblical Theology
    From Traditum to Traditio: Michael Fishbane
    Exegetical Imagination: Midrashic and Mythopoeic Images
    The Myth of the Return to Chaos in Jeremiah

  7. From History to Cultural Context: Postmodernism
    Postmodernism: Tenets and Theorists
    Postmodernism and Biblical Interpretation
    Postmodernism, Biblical Theology, and Jeremiash: Walter Brueggemann
    The Value and Limits of Postmodernism

  8. From the Colonial Bible to the Postcolonial Text: Biblical Theology as Contextual
    The Stages of Postcolonialism and Its Impact on Subaltern Religion
    Characteristics of Subaltern Writings and Readings in Religion and Theology
    Voices from the Third World: Male and Female
    Postcolonial Biblical Theology in Geographical Settings: The Case of Senegal
    A Second Example of Postcolonial Biblical Theology: India and Dalit Theology
    A Postcolonial Interperation of the Theology of Jeremiah

  9. The Changing Future of Old Testament Theology: A Postscript
    Concluding Observations
    Constructing a Paradigm for Old Testament Theology
Index of Modern Names
Index of Scripture