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Josiah's Reform and the Dynamics of DefilementIsraelite Rites of Violence and the Making of a Biblical Text$
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Lauren A. S. Monroe

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199774166

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199774166.001.0001

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Destructive Rituals and the Creative Process

Destructive Rituals and the Creative Process

The Dynamics of Defilement in 2 Kings 22–23

(p.3) 1 Destructive Rituals and the Creative Process
Josiah's Reform and the Dynamics of Defilement

Lauren A. S. Monroe

Oxford University Press

This chapter explains how the language of 2 Kgs 23 provides entrée to the ritual dimensions of Josiah's reform. The text attests to language associated with two types of defilement ritual: apotropaic rites of riddance and ḥērem. The former, common in priestly texts, serves to avert danger, while the latter occurs often in Deuteronom(ist)ic texts and connotes the destruction of enemies and their consecration to Yahweh. These two ritual categories are essential to understanding the efficacy of Josiah's reform measures and the compositional history of the text. This chapter situates the book's conclusions regarding the composition of 2 Kgs 23 within the context of earlier models and establishes the critical foundations for the assertion of a Holiness substratum in the text.

Keywords:   defilement ritual, apotropaic ritual, Deuteronomistic, Josiah's reform, Holiness, compositional history

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