Page 96 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 36

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ERIC M. MEYERS
Recent Literature on the Archaeology
of Eretz Israel
T
h e
t a s k
o f
s u m m a r i z i n g
the recent literature of so vast a field
as Palestinian archaeology is an impossibility given the limita-
tions of space alloted to this author. What we shall attempt to
do, therefore, is a kind of review essay highlighting some of the
most important recent publications and achievements in this
field; bu t more importantly, we shall try to indicate to the
nonspecialist how one goes about finding h is/her way in this
field. By speaking only of the archaeology of Eretz Israel we
perforce ignore the broader geographical setting of Eretz Israel
within the East Mediterranean; and it should be stated un-
equivocally tha t such a delimitation is purely artificial and
w ithout import here. On the contrary, it is only in the broader
setting tha t the material culture of ancient Eretz Israel may be
properly understood; and this short essay presupposes tha t the
serious reader will avail himself of all the bibliographical aids
for Near Eastern studies in general.
Literature in the field of Palestinian archaeology is limited,
however, and may be discovered in a fairly restricted number
of journals and monograph series. Most of these publications
are tied to the emergence of “national schools” in the more
general field of “biblical archaeology.” For example, the Ameri-
can Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR) has a research center
in Jerusalem, the W. F. Albright Institu te of Archaeological
Research, and one in Amman, The American Center of Oriental
Research. I t also has institutes in Cyprus, Tunisia, Iraq and
a prospective center in Egypt. Its major journal is the
Bulletin
of the American Schools of Oriental Research
(BASOR) and
it publishes a
News let ter
for its membership, as well as a more
popular journal,
Biblical Archaeologist.
I t is possible, therefore,
if one were systematically to follow these publications, to get
a very representative picture of American research activity in
Eretz Israel and the Near East up to the present. American
interest in the archaeology of Palestine dates to the m id­
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