Persia had Rostam. Babylonia had Gilgamesh and Enkidu. Egypt had Horus and Isis. Greece had Odysseus and Achilles. Israel had its heroes, too–Moses, David, Esther and Samson. While Israel’s heroes did not wear capes or spandex, they did meet cultural needs. In times of crisis, heroes emerge to model virtues that inspire a sense of commitment and worth. Identity concerns were especially acute for a post-exilic Jewish culture. Using modern American superheroes and their stories in a cross-cultural discussion, Dr. Johnny Miles’s new book presents the stories of Israelite characters as heroes filling a cultural need.
Congratulations to Dr. Miles on the publication of his new book, which McFarland Publishing released earlier this year.