Biblical Archaeology Review 34:3, May/June 2008

First Person: BAR—Most Loved and Most Reviled

By Hershel Shanks

The First Person column in this issue is written by Professor Hector Avalos, although he will not know it until it appears in print.

Avalos, who teaches Religious Studies at Iowa State University, is author of a new book titled The End of Biblical Studies.1 Its thesis is that “Biblical studies as we know it should end.” He believes that scholars should “redefine” the purpose of Biblical studies “so that it is tasked with eliminating completely the influence of the Bible in the modern world … Why do we need an ancient book that endorses everything from genocide to slavery?” he asks. (See related book review REVIEWS.)

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