Ian Wilson deposited Isaiah 1-12: Presentation of a (Davidic?) Politics in the group Ancient Near East on Humanities Commons 1 year, 9 months ago
In this essay I sketch an outline of how the book of Isaiah presents its politics, working from the assumption—based on the research of Peter Ackroyd and others—that the presentation of Isaiah, the prophet, in the book’s opening chapters is key. I end up arguing that the book advocates for Davidic politics, as others have claimed, but that its discourse does not settle on any one single Davidic hope or disappointment for the community going forward. Riffing on anthropologist Maurice Bloch, I would say that, for Isaianic discourse, David is central but is nothing special. This argument, too, has more general implications for how we understand prophetic books as literary artifacts from ancient Judah and also for how we understand the lived experience of Judean society in the early Second Temple era, a people whose lives had been subject to various forms of imperial rule for several centuries.