HUMAN DIGNITY AND THE CONSTRUCTION OF IDENTITY IN THE OLD TESTAMENT

Louis Jonker

Abstract



The status of Israel changed dramatically as a result of the Babylonian exile and its
aftermath during the Persian era. Whereas the self-understanding of the people was closely
linked to the Davidic monarchy during the pre-exilic time, the post-exilic community had to
face the reality of their provincial existence under Persian imperial rule. The sociopolitical
and socio-cultural environment changed dramatically because of these events,
resulting in renewed processes of identity negotiation in Israel. We witness different
attempts at verbalizing these processes in the biblical writings. The impact of the Persian
imperial context on the self-understanding of the community in Jerusalem will be
investigated with special reference to the Books of Chronicles. In these books � different to
from e.g. Ezra-Nehemiah � a tendency towards inclusivism can be detected in the process
of identity negotiation. This paper will show how this tendency relates to the qualified
tolerance that was characteristic of the Persian (Achaemenid) era.

Keywords


Human Rights, Persian History, Persian Period Biblical Literature, Chronicles

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7833/105-0-160

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ISSN 2305-445X (online); ISSN 0254-1807 (print)

Attribution CC BY-NC-ND 4.0


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