Lecture Series

The Book of Job

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The Emeritus Professor of Hebrew Language and Literature at the Universitat de Barcelona and Bible and Compared Literature specialist, Gregorio del Olmo will present two lectures in which he analyses the historical, religious and literary dimensions of one of the most studied and commented books of the Old Testament, the Book of Job.

The Book of Job addresses the universal theme of the righteous man who endures a suffering he believes to be undeserved, which had well-known precedents in the surrounding Semitic cultures. In these cultures, the problem was experienced as that of man standing before his God and from the religious assumption that pain is a punishment that evil determines. The righteous should be free of it. In fact, the Hebrew Bible presents Job as a foreigner, the proper name of the God of Israel does not appear in the Hebrew text; Job’s God is not Yahweh; his is a simple god, that of every man.

From a literary point of view, the Book of Job could be defined as the most perfect composition of the anthology of texts forming the Hebrew Bible. As a matter of fact, it pertains to a genre scantly represented in the Bible: the dramatic genre. It is an incessant dialogue between stage characters. In relation to the Spanish literary tradition, the Book of Job could be defined as a Calderonian religious play avant la lettre.

Extracts from texts by Gregorio del Olmo

Lectures in this series