Sunday Brunch and Speaker, April 15, 11 AM

Speaker: Dr. Stuart Hantman
  Topic: “Adventures in Biblical Archaeology:” - Israel without the Bible"

hantmanDr. Hantman is a radiologist, recently retired from Borg & Ide Imaging. He attended Cornell University and the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and has been in Rochester since 2001. His interest in Biblical Archaeology was sparked by Prof. Gary Rendsburg after registering for his seminar on that subject at Cornell Alumni University. Subsequently, he and his daughter,r Melissa, joined the Biblical Archaeology Society. (Gary, who remains their personal friend and mentor, is currently the Chairman of Judaic Studies at Rutgers). The BAS is an organization dedicated to the study of the Bible from several angles - for example, sacred scripture and/or epic narrative. This is accomplished primarily through archaeological (field) expeditions and literary critical analysis. The BAS has a bimonthly publication, Biblical Archaeology Review, and Dr. Hantman and Melissa have attended several annual meetings, most recently in Philadelphia, Washington, D.C. and Boston.

One of the ongoing controversies in Biblical Archaeology (dating from the late 20th century) is between the Maximalists, who maintain that the Hebrew Bible is an accurate depiction of Israelites and, indirectly, ancient Near Eastern history, and the Minimalists, who claim that the Hebrew Bible is a hoax perpetrated by Levitical priests following the Babylonian exile, in the Persian period or even the Hellenistic period. The argument of the latter is predominantly an argument from silence: namely the alleged absence of extra-biblical references to King David and a United Monarchy. Is this still true? Or are there "alternative facts"? We will examine the evidence and, hopefully. draw our own conclusions. This presentation is a comprehensive update of a lecture entitled "Israel Without the Bible" presented to the BAS by Prof. Gary Rendsburg and later published as chapter 1 in The Hebrew Bible ( F. Greenspahn, ed. NYU Press, 2008).

RSVP (Please) to Cathy Leora Dayan by Thursday, April 12 (585-645-5254, to afford our chefs adequate time to plan the meal.