What do we know about the archaeology and history of ancient Israel, and how do we know it? A course at B’nai Sholom Reform Congregation in Albany will provide many of the answers.
“Archaeology and History of Ancient Israel” will be taught over eight Thursdays beginning April 11, 10-11:45 a.m. at the synagogue, 420 Whitehall Road, Albany, New York.
This course will examine the development of Biblical archaeology from the antiquarians of the 19th century to the maturing of the discipline in the 1970s, ’80s, and ’90s; the environmental, geographic, historical and prehistoric contexts of ancient Israel; and the archaeology of the Patriarchal Age, the descent into Egypt and the Exodus. Later discussion will look at the wandering in the wilderness, the conquest and settlement of the land of Canaan, the emergence of Israel as a people, the united monarchy of David and Solomon and the destruction of the First Temple in 586 B.C.E.
Steven Stark-Riemer, the course instructor, studied anthropology at City College of New York, where he specialized in archaeology, and received his degree in 1972. He conducted field work at the Tell Gezer excavations in Israel under the direction of William G. Dever, director of the Hebrew Union College Biblical and Archaeological School at the time. Stark-Riemer continues to pursue his interest in the archaeology, history and religion of the ancient Near East.
“Archaeology and History of Ancient Israel” is open to the public. Fee for the eight-session course is $54 ($36 for B’nai Sholom members), and registration is required.
Founded in 1971, B’nai Sholom Reform Congregation in Albany is a home for contemporary Reform Judaism in the Capital Region. Nearly 130 diverse households from six counties seek religious, educational and social fulfillment at B’nai Sholom.