Biblical minimalism

Niels Peter Lemche npl at
Fri Nov 12 00:53:31 EST 1999

It's a funny term, as it as it is used now-a-days is exclusively used about
people who questions the historical dimension, i.e. the relationship between
the historical narrative in the HB/OT and the world outside the Bible.
Biblical minimalism could just as well be called 'maximalism' as this
normally leads to a greater appraisal of the text as handed down to
posterity, and not only of the few parts that are 'historical' according to
the modern taste. As usual within scholarship, precise definitions are a
must. On Miqra I called out for a discssuion about what has happened to the
field because of the historical scepticism, that it seems to have opened for
a stream of non-historically oriented readings of all sorts, which is
legitimate but may have little to do with the Bible's own historical
dimension of being a text from long long time ago. The issue did not provoke
much in the way of a reaction.


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