Final Exam Preparation-Option A Old Testament as Literature, Fall 2020
Essay Question and Discussion—15% of the Final Exam
In Old Testament as Literature scholars often comment on the similarity between biblical texts and classic or popular literature and film. Biblical characters and plot lines resemble those from series and films we stream. “Intertextuality” is the literary term for this resonance. It reminds me of Qoheleth/Ecclesiastes 1:9, “What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done; there is nothing new under the sun” Ecclesiastes 1:9 (emphasis added).
Essay Instructions. Select an Old Testament text (abbreviate: OTT) and a literary text from popular culture (abbreviate: PCT) and discuss their common themes. The latter can include literature, film and series of all kinds.
Some pre-writing questions to consider as you make your choices:
What ultimate existence questions reside at the heart of the most popular genres today: crime dramas, hospital dramas, post-apocalyptic, dystopian, science fiction, etc.
Which well-developed biblical characters spark a connection with equally well-developed characters in books you have read or entertainment you watch?
*How is your PCT a commentary on our present times and culture(s)? What are the issues of concern related to your OTT? Harris’s textbook addresses the cultural setting of biblical texts.
Write your essay prior to taking the final exam and post it on the Final Exam Preparation Discussion Link in Week 7 Learning Module. You will also need to paste the text in the essay space on the online final exam.
Your essay is 15% of the exam grade but you may earn up to five points extra based on the quality of your essay and discussion of other posts on the Discussion Forum.
Grading Rubric and Outline
2 points—I. Old Testament text (OTT) and popular culture text (PCT) clearly described with biblical citations and authors, respectively. N.B. Do not choose a New Testament text or character.
2+ points—II. Thesis statement regarding the connection of the two texts.
5+ points—III. Two to three common themes each developed with examples from both texts.
3+ points—IV. Conclusion describing the significance of the two texts as they may function in their respective cultures.*
1 point—Minimum 300 words and Parts I-IV labeled in your essay.
2+ points—Substantive contributions to the discussion of other essays from Option A
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