The nature and reliability of the ancient sources are among the
most important issues in the scholarship on the Dead Sea Scrolls.
It is noteworthy, therefore, that scholars have grown increasingly
skeptical about the value of these materials for reconstructing the
life of the Teacher of Righteousness. Travis B. Williams' study is
designed to address this new perspective and its implications for
historical inquiry. He offers an important corrective to popular
conceptions of history and memory by introducing memory theory as a
means of informing historical investigation. Charting a new
methodological course in Dead Sea Scrolls research, Williams
reveals that properly representing the past requires an explanation
of how the mnemonic evidence found in the relevant sources could
have developed from a historical progression that began with the
Teacher. His book represents the first attempt in Dead Sea Scrolls
scholarship to integrate history and memory in a comprehensive way.
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