See my article, “Save Us from Postmodern Malarkey,” BAR 26:02.


See my review in BAR 27:02.


William G. Dever, What Did the Biblical Writers Know and When Did They Know It? What Archaeology Can Tell Us about the Reality of Ancient Israel (Grand Rapids: W.B. Eerdmans, 2001).



See especially William G. Dever, “Syro-Palestinian and Biblical Archaeology,” in Douglas A. Knight and Gordon M. Tucker, eds., The Hebrew Bible and Its Modern Interpreters (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1985), pp. 31–74 and references there; “Archaeology, Syro-Palestinian and Biblical,” in David Noel Freedman, ed., Anchor Bible Dictionary (New York: Doubleday, 1992), pp. 354–367; “Biblical Archaeology—Death and Rebirth?” in Avraham Biran and Joseph Aviram, eds., Proceedings of the Second International Congress on Biblical Archaeology, Jerusalem, June 1990 (Jerusalem: Israel Exploration Society, 1993), pp. 706–722; “Biblical and Syro-Palestinian Archaeology: A State-of-the-Art Assessment at the Turn of the Millennium,” Currents in Research: Biblical Studies 8 (2000), pp. 91–116.


The most convenient way to access Albright’s voluminous publications is to consult David Noel Freedman, The Published Works of William Foxwell Albright: A Comprehensive Bibliography (Cambridge: American Schools of Oriental Research, 1975).


Again in 1951, his survey in the handbook The Old Testament and Modern Study was entitled “The Old Testament and the Archaeology of Palestine.”


Haverford Symposium on Archaeology and the Bible, 1938.


W.F. Albright, “The Impact of Archaeology on Biblical Research,” in New Directions in Biblical Archaeology (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1969), p. 1.


See n. 1; and add “Biblical Theology and Biblical Archaeology: An Appreciation of G. Ernest Wright,” Harvard Theological Review 73 (1981), pp. 1–15. Wright’s bibliography may be found in Frank M. Cross, Niels P. Lemche, and Patrick D. Miller, eds., Magnalia Dei: The Mighty Acts of God (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1976).


In New Directions in 1969, Wright’s choice of topics, compared to Albright’s generic title, was again “Biblical Archaeology Today.”


G. Ernest Wright, “The Present State of Biblical Archaeology,” in The Study of the Bible Today and Tomorrow (Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press: 1947), p. 74.


Here are the titles of some standard works after those of Albright and Wright (virtually the complete bibliography):

1960: Kathleen M. Kenyon, Archaeology of the Holy Land.

1978: Yohanan Aharoni, Archaeology of the Land of the Bible.

1988: H. Weippert, Palästina in vorhellenistischen Zeit (Palestine in Pre-Hellenistic Times).

1990: Amihai Mazar, Archaeology of the Land of the Bible, 10,000–586 B.C.E.

1991: P. R. S. Moorey, A Century of Biblical Archaeology.

1992: Amnon Ben-Tor, ed., Archaeology of Ancient Israel.

1994: Volkmar Fritz, Introduction to Biblical Archaeology.

1995: T. E. Levy, ed., The Archaeology of Society in the Holy Land.


A “White Paper” of mine on terminology was circulated, but it found no consensus. Finally, I suggested (somewhat facetiously) that we publish a title-page styled The Archaeology of X, and then provide a following page of pull-off labels with various competing terms, which individual readers could stick on to suit themselves. It seems that we are still “hung up in the prolegomenon.”


On the “Israeli school,” see O. Bar-Yosef and Amihai Mazar, “Israeli Archaeology,” World Archaeology 13 (1982), pp. 310–325; Ephraim Stern, “The Bible and Israeli Archaeology,” in L. G. Perdue, L. E. Toombs, and G. L. Johnson, eds., Archaeology and Biblical Interpretation: Essays in Memory of D. Glenn Rose (Atlanta: John Knox Press, 1987), pp. 31–40; Amihai Mazar, “Israeli Archaeologists,” in J. F. Drinkard, G.L. Mattingly, and J.M. Miller, eds., Benchmarks in Time and Culture: An Introduction to Palestinian Archaeology (Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1988), pp. 109–128.


Stern, “The Bible and Israeli Archaeology,” pp. 32 and 35.


Stern, “The Bible and Israeli Archaeology,” p. 35.


Amihai Mazar, “Israeli Archaeologists,” in J.F. Drinkard, G.L. Mattingly and J.M. Miller, eds., Benchmarks in Time and Culture: An Introduction to Palestinian Archaeology (Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1988), p. 122.


Mazar, “Israeli Archaeologists,” p. 127.


Levant 30 (1998), pp. 167–174.


(New York: Free Press, 2001) and compare with Finkelstein and Silberman’s response in “The Bible Unearthed: A Rejoinder,” Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research 327 (2002), pp. 63–73.


Eretz-yisrael” has long since become a political slogan, as for instance in the “Israel-shlemah” or “Greater Israel” movement, whose aim is to restore to the modern State all of the territories claimed by ancient/Biblical Israel. The same political ambitions attach to the term “Greater Syria”.


Some suggest that to “save” the “Palestinian” terminology, we might specify “the archaeology of ancient Palestine.” Yet the region was not called “Palestine” before the Roman period. Similarly, the name “Israel” is much too restrictive in time and space. Alternatively, the designation “Canaan” is both too broad and at the same time so ill-defined that some scholars suggest that it be abandoned altogether.