At a time when the relationship between the Bible and history is particularly fraught, there is need for fresh inquiry about potential connections. With a new book under this title, Daniel Fleming undertakes to recast the debate by reconsidering the nature of Israel as it existed before the people of Judah laid claim to its heritage. As he sees it, the biblical story from Genesis through Kings was framed by primary ingredients preserved in Israel through the time of its “northern” kingdom, so that distinguishing these from Judah’s voice becomes the first step in recalibrating the usefulness of this narrative for questions of history.

About the Speaker: DANIEL E. FLEMING has spent his career in the Skirball Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies at New York University, where he has been responsible for the fields of both Hebrew Bible and Assyriology, along with related Near Eastern domains. Before this contribution to biblical studies and Israelite history, his previous books have been based on cuneiform evidence: The Installation of Baal’s High Priestess at Emar (1992), Time at Emar (2000), Democracy’s Ancient Ancestors (2004), and coauthored with Sara Milstein, The Buried Foundations of the Gilgamesh Epic (2010). He has abiding connections with that other part of California centered around a certain large Bay and is nevertheless thrilled to visit UCLA for the first time.