Jack M. Sasson
From the Mari Archives
An Anthology of Old Babylonian Letters
New Books in Biblical StudiesNew Books in HistoryNew Books in Middle Eastern StudiesNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in Religion & FaithNew Books Network December 29, 2016 L. Michael Morales
For over 40 years, Jack M. Sasson has been studying and commenting on the cuneiform archives from Mari on the Euphrates River, especially those from the age of Hammurabi of Babylon. Among Mari’s wealth of documents, some of the most interesting are letters from and to kings, their advisers and functionaries, their wives and daughters, their scribes and messengers, and a variety of military personnel. The letters are revealing and often poignant. Sasson selects more than 700 letters as well as several excerpts from administrative documents, translating them and providing them with illuminating comments. In distilling a lifetime of study and interpretation, Sasson hopes to welcome readers into the life of a world entombed for four millennia, making the realities of ancient life tangible, giving it a human perspective that is at once instructive and entertaining. All that and more on today’s show as we speak with Jack Sasson about his recent publication, From the Mari Archives: An Anthology of Old Babylonian Letters (Eisenbrauns, 2015).
Jack M. Sasson is Werthan Professor emeritus of Judaic and Biblical Studies at Vanderbilt University (Nashville, Tenn), and professor emeritus at UNC Chapel Hill. Sasson has held numerous posts, elected and nominated, at universities and at professional societies, among them President of the American Oriental Society (1998) and of the International Association for Assyriology (2005-2010). He has edited the “Bible and Ancient Near East” pages of the Journal of the American Oriental Society (1976-1984; 1996-2000) and has joined the editorial boards of several journals and serials. He was chief editor of Scribner’s Civilizations of the Ancient Near East, a 4-volume reference set that appeared in 1995 and that has received many awards since then.
L. Michael Morales is Professor of Biblical Studies at Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, and the author of The Tabernacle Pre-Figured: Cosmic Mountain Ideology in Genesis and Exodus (Peeters, 2012), and Who Shall Ascend the Mountain of the Lord?: A Biblical Theology of Leviticus (IVP Academic, 2015). He can be reached at [email protected].