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Noah Traditions in the Dead Sea Scrolls: Conversations and Controversies of Antiquity
Dorothy M. Peters
EJL 26
Publication Date
November 2008


As father of all humanity and not exclusively of Israel, Noah was a problematic ancestor for some Jews in the Second Temple period. His archetypical portrayals in the Dead Sea Scrolls, differently nuanced in Hebrew and Aramaic, embodied the tensions for groups that were struggling to understand both their distinctive self-identities within Judaism and their relationship to the nations among whom they lived. Dually located within a trajectory of early Christian and rabbinic interpretation of Noah and within the Jewish Hellenistic milieu of the Second Temple period, this study of the Noah traditions in the Dead Sea Scrolls illuminates living conversations and controversies among the people who transmitted them and promises to have implications for ancient questions and debates that extended considerably beyond the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Dorothy M. Peters is Sessional Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at Trinity Western University.