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Lawrence M Wills

Lawrence M. Wills is visiting professor of Judaic Studies and Religious Studies at Brown University. He graduated from Harvard University with a degree in social anthropology, and from Harvard Divinity School with an M.T.S. and a Th.D., both in New Testament and Hellenistic Judaism. He taught at Harvard Divinity School, held the Ethelbert Talbot Chair in Biblical Studies at Episcopal Divinity School, and also taught at Wesleyan University. In 2019 he was the Croghan Bicentennial Visiting Professor at Williams College before returning to Brown University as visiting professor. His books include The Jewish Novel in the Ancient World (1995), which was named an Outstanding Academic Book of 1995 by Choice magazine for academic librarians, and also The Quest of the Historical Gospel: Mark, John, and the Origins of the Gospel Genre (1997); Not God’s People: Insiders and Outsiders in the Biblical World (2008); and The Jew in the Court of the Foreign King: Ancient Jewish Court Legends (1990). He has also co-edited two books, Conflicted Boundaries in Wisdom and Apocalypticism (with Benjamin G. Wright, 2005), and Jewish Annotated Apocrypha (with Jonathan Klawans, forthcoming).


Book List

1 items
Release date: 
November 5, 2019

Judith is an ancient Jewish novella about a woman who saves Jerusalem by killing an invading general. Included in some early Christian versions of the Old Testament, its imagery and use of biblical motifs have played an important role in the Western tradition ever since. This commentary provides a detailed analysis of the text's composition and its meaning in its original historical context. It thoroughly surveys the history of Judith scholarship and the book's history of interpretation in paintings, sculpture, music, drama, and literature.