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Character and Ideology in the Book of Esther Paperback – October 1, 2001
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Top Customer Reviews
Fox's honesty when dealing with the "heroine (?)" Esther is a must read for all traditionalists and those who read the story with gilded pages. The methodology on the whole is thorough, though there were a few areas that had me (and my seminar group along with me) scratching my head concerning certain inconsistencies in weighing data for conclusions. In certain areas said conclusions could be more prominent, with Fox sometimes settling to present the case for multiple options and not definitively defending a certain point of view. One may also find fault that Fox does not deal with any issues at length in Greek Esther(s) (eg Alpha text, LXX, etc) which may have helped inform certain aspects of his character portrait (eg, What does the Greek prayer of Mordecai addition (?) add to the earliest perceptions of him as character?), but this is his prerogative.
Despite little percieved problems, on the whole the book is excellent, and along with the JPS commentary by Adele Berlin and the monograph by JD Levenson I believe this book composes one third of the best and most recent mainstream Jewish scholarship on the Hebrew text.