SRJC Course Outlines

7/15/2024 2:28:59 AMRELS 21 Course Outline as of Summer 2022

Changed Course

Discipline and Nbr:  RELS 21Title:  JEWISH BIBLE & BIRTH GOD  
Full Title:  The Jewish Bible and the Birth of God
Last Reviewed:4/22/2019

UnitsCourse Hours per Week Nbr of WeeksCourse Hours Total
Maximum3.00Lecture Scheduled3.0017.5 max.Lecture Scheduled52.50
Minimum3.00Lab Scheduled06 min.Lab Scheduled0
 Contact DHR0 Contact DHR0
 Contact Total3.00 Contact Total52.50
 Non-contact DHR0 Non-contact DHR Total0

 Total Out of Class Hours:  105.00Total Student Learning Hours: 157.50 

Title 5 Category:  AA Degree Applicable
Grading:  Grade or P/NP
Repeatability:  00 - Two Repeats if Grade was D, F, NC, or NP
Also Listed As: 
Formerly:  HUMAN 10.1

Catalog Description:
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A study of the emergence of the Bible of Judaism within the context of Egyptian and Mesopotamian religions, the emergence of the Jewish people and religion, and their impact on world cultures.


Recommended Preparation:
Eligibility for ENGL 1A or equivalent

Limits on Enrollment:

Schedule of Classes Information
Description: Untitled document
A study of the emergence of the Bible of Judaism within the context of Egyptian and Mesopotamian religions, the emergence of the Jewish people and religion, and their impact on world cultures.
(Grade or P/NP)

Recommended:Eligibility for ENGL 1A or equivalent
Limits on Enrollment:
Transfer Credit:CSU;UC.
Repeatability:00 - Two Repeats if Grade was D, F, NC, or NP


Associate Degree:Effective:Fall 1981
CSU GE:Transfer Area Effective:Inactive:
 C2HumanitiesFall 1981
IGETC:Transfer Area Effective:Inactive:
 3BHumanitiesFall 1981
CSU Transfer:TransferableEffective:Fall 1981Inactive:
UC Transfer:TransferableEffective:Fall 1981Inactive:

Certificate/Major Applicable: Major Applicable Course


Student Learning Outcomes:
At the conclusion of this course, the student should be able to:
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1.  Use a critical-historical vocabulary to describe the composition, history
     and socio-historical contexts of the Hebrew Bible.
2.  Compare and contrast the different religious ideas among texts of the Hebrew Bible.
3.  Explain similarities and differences between the religions of Ancient Israel and Judaism.

Objectives: Untitled document
At the conclusion of this course, the student should be able to:
1.  Acquire the skills to read and discuss the biblical text with reasonable ease and
2.  Name the genre and describe the generic features of a passage from the Hebrew Bible.  
3.  Distinguish among the assumptions of traditional biblical interpretation and the methodology
     and conclusions of modern biblical criticism.
4.  Distinguish between the assumptions and techniques of traditional biblical exegesis and
      the theory and methodology of modern biblical criticism.
5.  Describe historical origins and redaction of biblical literature.
6.  Discern the major literary and religious themes and recount their development.
7.  Identify the major personalities, events and political geography of Ancient Israel.
8.  Demonstrate familiarity with the unfolding story line of the biblical narrative.
9.  Discuss the biblical text as the classical literature of an ancient people with sources in
      and shared cultural features with Mesopotamia, Egypt, Hatti and Canaan-Phoenicia,
     which has helped to shape the development of the western world.
10. Explain the evolution of the religion of Judaism from the matrix of Ancient Israel.

Topics and Scope
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I.  Introduction to Traditional Understandings of the Hebrew Scripture
II.  Modern Methods of Biblical Research
    A. Documentary Theory
    B. Comparative Near Eastern literature
    C. The theory of the original matriarchy, the nature of patriarchy and its literary heritage
    D. Midrash and biblical literary style compared with other narrative styles
    E. Contemporary historiographic and hermeneutic criticism
III. The Covenant -- Tracing its Literary Presence in the Creation Story
    A. The flood and Abraham
    B.  Abraham as ancestor of the Israelite and Ishmaelite traditions
IV. The Akedah
    A.  Its literary history, traditional interpretations
    B.  Its connections to the sacrificial cult
    C.  Its centrality in the history of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem
V.    Machpelah -- the Burial of Sarah and Narratives Concerning Claim to the Land of Canaan
VI.   The story of Sodom and the Code of Hospitality
VII.  The Jacob Tradition: Tribal History and Legend
VIII. The Rape of Dinah and the Levitical Origins
IX.   Judah and Tamar and the Beginnings of the Judean Davidic Traditions
X.    Joseph and the Northern Israelite Traditions
XI.   The Exodus Story
    A. Testing the historical reality of the story
    B. Testing the durability and thematic credibility of the story
    C. Miracles, historiography and literary style
    D. The nature of prophecy and Yahwist understanding
    E. The evolutionary reality of the Mosaic  traditions
XII. The Book of Joshua: the Tribes of Yahweh and the Period of the Conquest/Rebellion
XIII. The Book of Judges
    A. The period of the Settlement
    B. Israel facing the external threat of Canaanite and Philistine domination -- Deborah as
          prophetess and military leader
    C. Israel facing the internal threat of assimilation and acculturation -- the story of Samson
          and Delilah
XIV. The Monarchy
    A. The tradition from Samuel to Saul with emphasis on the literary characteristics
          of these figures as they interact
    B. The beginnings of prophetic criticism of the monarchy
    C. The advent of David, his rise and reign
    D. The accession of Solomon
    E. The transformation of Israel from an agrarian, egalitarian, tribal confederation to
          an urban, military aristocracy
XV.   The Monarchies of David and Solomon
XVI.  The Divided Kingdoms and the Rise of the Literary Prophets: (Elijah), Hosea, Amos and Isaiah
         Through the Assyrian Invasion and the Destruction of Israel
XVII.  The Nature and Content of Prophecy: Yahwist Social Criticism, the Yahwist Hermeneutic
XVIII. The Deuteronomists and the Reform of Josiah
XIX.   The Babylonian Exile
XX.    Yahwism vs. Zoroastrian Dualism
XXI.   Isaiah and the Coming of Cyrus and the Persian Conquest
XXII.  Job
XXIII. Ezra and Nehemiah--the Restoration of Judah and the Canonization of the Torah
XXIV. Yahwist Wisdom Literature: Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Lamentations and the
       Song of Solomon
XXV. The Jewish-Roman War
XXVI. The Mishnah and Rabbinic Judaism
XXVII. The Jewish Diaspora

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1. Weekly reading assignments of between 20-50 pages
2. One to three exegetical essays (explicating select biblical texts) using critical methods acquired in lecture
      and reading
3. One to three thematic essays which build a conceptual synthesis out of related narratives
      and aphorisms
4. Two to four exams of objective or essay or combined format
5. Final exam of objective or essay or combined format
6. Two to eight quizzes
7. Optional field trips and oral presentations

Methods of Evaluation/Basis of Grade.
Writing: Assessment tools that demonstrate writing skill and/or require students to select, organize and explain ideas in writing.Writing
40 - 80%
Exegetical and thematic papers and essays
Problem solving: Assessment tools, other than exams, that demonstrate competence in computational or non-computational problem solving skills.Problem Solving
0 - 0%
Skill Demonstrations: All skill-based and physical demonstrations used for assessment purposes including skill performance exams.Skill Demonstrations
0 - 0%
Exams: All forms of formal testing, other than skill performance exams.Exams
20 - 50%
Multiple choice, true/false, matching items, completion, essay exams, text analysis
Other: Includes any assessment tools that do not logically fit into the above categories.Other Category
0 - 10%
Classroom participation, optional oral presentations, reports on interviews, museum visits, or field trips

Representative Textbooks and Materials:
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The  Bible Unearthed: Archaeology's New Vision of Ancient Israel and the Origin of its Sacred Texts. Finkelstein, Israel and  Silberman, Neil Asher. Touchstone. 2002 (classic)
A Short Introduction to the Hebrew Bible. Collins, John J. Fortress Press. 2018
How The Bible Became Holy. Satlow, Michael L. Yale University Press. 2014 (classic)
The Invention of Judaism. Collins, John J. UC Press. 2017
The Invention of God. Thomas Römer, Trans. Geuss, Raymond. Harvard University Press. 2015 (classic)

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