This is a review of The Modern Scholar: The Hebrew Bible audio course download available from Audible. This is a course on the the Hebrew Bible taught by Lawrence Schiffman. He is a widely recognized expert on both the Hebrew Bible in general and the Dead Sea Scrolls in particular. He currently teaches in the Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies at New York University and has been featured in a number of television programs about the Hebrew Bible.
The course contains 14 lectures each lasting approximately 30 minutes. With the significant amount of material in the Hebrew Bible, this obviously keeps the course from going into extraordinary detail. However, many of the lectures give an excellent, succinct overview. In particular, I have found the lecture on the nature of the Bible and the lecture on Biblical archaeology very helpful, listening to them multiple times in preparation for my own teaching. His discussion of the historicity of the Exodus is insightful demonstrating how the Hebrew Bible often contains historical kernels that develop over time.
One issue is that with the Audible download one does not receive the course booklet. Yet the upside is that the course costs far less using download credits than if one orders the CD version with the booklet.
Overall, the course has a 4 star rating on Audible. My own rating would be equivalent. I would recommend the course to anyone interested in an introduction to the academic study of the Hebrew Bible, though not necessarily to academics looking for a significant amount of detail. This recommendation also applies only to those willing to save by not receiving the booklet.
Jeremy Thompson I am a doctoral student in Biblical languages and instructor of Old Testament/Hebrew Bible. I also run http://www.ANEart.com. If you found this article helpful, learn how to get a free copy of The Modern Scholar: The Hebrew Bible audio download here.