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The Apocalypse: A Brief History

ISBN: 978-1-4051-1346-5
192 pages
December 2009, Wiley-Blackwell
The Apocalypse: A Brief History (1405113464) cover image
This accessible and enlightening history provides insights into the fascinating genre of apocalyptic literature, showing how the apocalypse encompasses far more than popular views of the last judgment and violent end of the world might suggest.
  • An accessible and enlightening history of the "apocalypses"--ancient Jewish and Christian works -- providing fresh insights into the fascinating genre of literature
  • Shows how the apocalypses were concerned not only with popular views of the last judgment and violent end of the world, but with reward and punishment after death, the heavenly temple, and the revelation of astronomical phenomena and other secrets of nature
  • Traces the tradition of apocalyptic writing through the Middle Ages, through to the modern era, when social movements still prophesise the world’s imminent demise
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Acknowledgments

Chronology

1. Revelation in the Age of the Torah

2. The Book of the Watchers   and Ascent to Heaven

3. The Book of Daniel and the Kingdom of the Holy Ones

4. The Heavenly Messiah

5. The Heavenly Temple, the Fate of Souls after Death, and Cosmology

6. Tours of Paradise and Hell and the Hekhalot Texts

7. Eschatology in the Byzantine Empire

8. Apocalyptic Movements in the Modern Era

Further Reading

Index

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Martha Himmelfarb is the William H. Danforth Professor of Religion at Princeton University. Her work has focused on Judaism of the Second Temple period and apocalyptic literature in particular. She is the author of Tours of Hell: An Apocalyptic Form in Jewish and Christian Literature (1985), Ascent to Heaven in Jewish and Christian Apocalypses (1993), and A Kingdom of Priests: Ancestry and Merit in Ancient Judaism (2006).
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  • An accessible and enlightening history of the "apocalypses"--ancient Jewish and Christian works -- providing fresh insights into the fascinating genre of literature
  • Shows how the apocalypses were concerned not only with popular views of the last judgment and violent end of the world, but with reward and punishment after death, the heavenly temple, and the revelation of astronomical phenomena and other secrets of nature
  • Traces the tradition of apocalyptic writing through the Middle Ages, through to the modern era, when social movements still prophesise the world’s imminent demise
See More
"This is certainly a valuable addition.  We look forward to those which are yet to come." (Theological Book Review, 2010)

"The author is an expert guide who both clears away the brushwood that can obscure our vision and also identifies and outlines the really important milestones. Written in an accessible and uncluttered by detail, this an excellent example of a scholar making available to a wide audience the fruits of her considerable academic labours in a field that has significant contemporary relevance."
Kenneth Newport, Liverpool Hope University

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