Bible as Literature (60)

The Bible is perhaps the
most influential book–or collection of books–that has ever been written.  In reading and discussing it as a literary
text, we will become well-acquainted with some of the most important works and
ideas in the cultural history of the Western world.

Some course objectives:

1.. helping you understand
the textual origins and transmission of books and portions of books of  the Bible

2.  helping you understand the
religious/ideological/social and cultic contexts within which they were

3.  helping you understand and analyze the forms,
literary and otherwise, in which and by which the content of books or portions
of book appears

4.  absorbing that content as a part of your
personal imaginative resources and carrying it with you as you pursue your
academic, personal, and personal goals and opportunities

5.  cooperating with other students to present
oral and written reports on portions of the Bible that are not assigned reading
for the rest of your classmates

6.  analyzing one Biblical text or portion of a
text through one or more of the following written assignments:  comparative translation exercise; analysis of
a literary critic’s interpretation of a Biblical text; comparison of a Biblical
text with a literary work influenced by the text

This is a large-enrollment
class (maximum 60 students) intended for both English majors and for non-majors
who have completed their English 100 requirement and, ideally, one or more
sophomore literature courses.  Most
classes will be lectures, but there will also be group discussions on
pre-determined topics and focuses as well as written and  oral group reports on portions of the Bible
not read by other classmates.  You will
be reading selected books or portions of books together with background
readings in a Bible guide book.   Books
to be read are likely to include all of Genesis, 1 and 2 Samuel, Job, Ruth,
Jonah, Amos, Judith, Matthew, Romans, and Revelation and excerpts from Exodus,
Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Ecclesiastes, Isaiah, Acts,
Corinthians, James, and Hebrews.

Required Texts:

·Stephen L. Harris, Understanding
the Bible
8th edition. 

·The New Oxford Annotated Bible with
Apocrypha: New Revised Standard Version, 
College Edition.
Michael Coogan, et al.  Oxford University


Course Requirements:

·Attendance and participation (10%)

·Oral and Written Group  Report (15%)

·Mid-term exam on Old Testament (Hebrew Bible) texts (20/25/30%)

·Final exam on Apocryphal and New Testament texts (20/25/30%)

·Translation, literary
criticism, or comparative paper (20/25/30%)