The Hebrew Bible and Environmental Ethics

Humans, NonHumans, and the Living Landscape

by Mari Joerstad

Subject categories
ISBNs
  • 9781108476447
  • 9781108759755
  • 9781108757928
The environmental crisis has prompted religious leaders and lay people to look to their traditions for resources to respond to environmental degradation. In this book, Mari Joerstad contributes to this effort by examining an ignored feature of the Hebrew Bible: its attribution of activity and affect to trees, fields, soil, and mountains. The Bible presents a social cosmos, in which humans are one kind of person among many. Using a combination of the tools of biblical studies and anthropological writings on animism, Joerstad traces the activity of non-animal nature through the canon. She shows how biblical writers go beyond sustainable development, asking us to be good neighbors to mountains and trees, and to be generous to our fields and vineyards. They envision human communities that are sources of joy to plants and animals. The Biblical writers' attention to inhabited spaces is particularly salient for contemporary environmental ethics in their insistence that our cities, suburbs, and villages contribute to flourishing landscapes.
  • Cambridge University Press; May 2019
  • ISBN: 9781108759755
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF or secure ePub format
  • Title: The Hebrew Bible and Environmental Ethics
  • Author: Mari Joerstad
  • Imprint: Cambridge University Press
Subject categories
ISBNs
  • 9781108476447
  • 9781108759755
  • 9781108757928

In The Press

'In this groundbreaking study, Mari Joerstad has found a new convergence between biblical studies and ecology. Exploring the 'living landscapes' of the Bible, from the creation texts of Genesis to the Song of Songs, Joerstad has charted a new landscape of research as well as a new pathway for action, one that has a distinctly aesthetic trajectory. In this work, the author proves to be both an artist and an exegete, a welcome combination.' William P. Brown, William Marcellus McPheeters Professor of Old Testament, Columbia Theological Seminary