Jews, Christians and Pagans in Antiquity
Edited By Jörg Ulrich, David Brakke and Anders-Christian Jacobsen
Criticism of Judaism in Greek and Roman Sources: Charges andApologetics (Second Century BC to Second Century AD) 59
Criticism of Judaism in Greek and Roman Sources: Charges and Apologetics (Fourth Century BC to Second Century AD)1 Oda Wischmeyer 1. Approaches 1.1. The subject of the 'Criticism of Judaism in Greek and Roman Sources' opens a densely researched field of philological textual ex- egesis, historical reconstruction and historical cause study. Here the scholarly debate about anti-Semitism, which is widely ramified and influenced by diverse interests and different levels of knowledge, is still in the lead, linking historical, methodical, ethical and politi- cal aspects. Focussing on academic literature on the relevant ancient texts alone, which constitute but one early section of the European literature on anti-Semitism, reveals the sheer abundance of publica- tions in this field. Questions are raised, specified and modified; they coincide, are attacked, revoked, and abandoned.2 Particularly the advance of research on anti-Semitism in the ancient world occurred intermittently, where new approaches were generally devised in con- tradiction to - or at least decidedly amending - previous ones. My contribution "Criticism of Judaism in Greek and Roman Sources' will be placed in this intricate and sensitive field as follows: ' I wish to thank Susanne Luther from my Erlangen chair of New Testament for taking care of the English translation of my paper. 2 See Z. Yavetz, Judeophobia in Classical Antiquity, in: JJS 44 (1993), 1-22; P. Schäfer, Judeophobia. Attitudes towards the Jews in the Ancient World, Cambridge 1997,197-211. Schäfer refers to Gavin I. Langmuir and J.N. Sevenster. Recently: H. Lichtenberger, Judaeophobia -...
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