The Black Hole in Isaiah 978-3-16-156862-6 - Mohr Siebeck
Theology

Frederik Poulsen

The Black Hole in Isaiah

A Study of Exile as a Literary Theme

[Das schwarze Loch in Jesaja. Eine Untersuchung des Exils als literarischem Thema.]

2019. XIV, 475 pages.

Forschungen zum Alten Testament 125

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Isaiah is strangely silent on the destruction of Jerusalem and the people's deportation to Babylon in the early sixth century BCE. Frederik Poulsen demonstrates that the exile hides itself as a »black hole« at the center of the composition and thereby has a decisive influence on the literary structure, poetic imagery, and theological message of this prophetic book.
Frederik Poulsen investigates exile as a literary and theological theme in the book of Isaiah. While other biblical writings explicitly depict the destruction of Jerusalem and the inhabitants' deportation to Babylon in the early sixth century BCE, Isaiah is apparently silent. At the center of the book where readers would expect to find an account of these traumatic and defining events, there is just a strange gap. The author argues that the curious break between chapters 39 and 40 indicates an anti-climax – a destroyed and forsaken Jerusalem – and that several passages stress its importance by either pointing forward to it or looking back at it. Frederik Poulsen demonstrates that the exile in Isaiah hides itself as a »black hole« at the center of the book and thereby has a decisive influence on the literary structure, poetic imagery, and theological message of this prophetic scroll.
Authors/Editors

Frederik Poulsen Born 1984; 2014 PhD; currently Assistant Professor of Old Testament at the University of Copenhagen.

Reviews

The following reviews are known:

In: The Bible Today — November 2019, S. 394 (Donald Senior)
In: Old Testament Abstracts — 42 (2019), S. 804–805 (C.T.B.)