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Flashes of Fire A Literary Analysis of the Song of Songs by Elie Assis

Flashes of Fire A Literary Analysis of the Song of Songs

Part of the The Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Studies Series


Flashes of Fire A Literary Analysis of the Song of Songs by Elie Assis

The essence of true love is in the yearning not in the consummation. This literary analysis of the Song of Songs employs the methods of New Criticism. Each analysis aims to uncover the messages conveyed by the poems and the inner world of the characters. The analysis brings to the fore the highly sophisticated and the original creativity of the love poetry of the Song of Songs. In the introduction, the question is posed as to whether the Song of Songs is an anthology or one literary whole. After discussing the strengths and weakness of the various approaches, the author proposes a novel structure for the Book predicated on the various genres of the love poems. Assis discerns poems of physical description, poems of adoration, and poems of yearning. In addition, he discerns what he takes to be a previously unrecognized genre, poems of rendezvous - a new structure which is based on a psychological understanding of passionate love is now discovered. One of the undisputed dominant features of passionate love is the longing for union with the beloved. Based on this premise, the book is divided into five sections, each of which ends with an attempt to unite or in a union. The structure of the book reflects an emotional and inner development in the psyche of the lovers and in the relationship between them. Throughout the book the interrelationships between the various genres of the love poems, and the development of the characters is spelled out

About the Author

Elie Assis, Ph.D., is a lecturer of Bible at Bar Ilan University. He has published on literary and theological aspects of biblical narrative including a study on the the Book of Judges: Self-Interest or Communal Interest: An Ideology of Leadership in the Gideon, Abimelech and Jephthah Narratives (Judg 6-12), Brill, 2002).

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Book Info

Publication date

1st September 2009


Elie Assis

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T.& T.Clark Ltd an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing PLC


306 pages


Biblical studies & exegesis



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