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HonorsŐ Freshman Sequence

HHI 21: Identity: Self in the World

Fall 2009

Themes/Discussion Handout


Monday, September 21

The Ancient Hebrews: Early Monotheism

Exodus chaps. 1-23

1)      What were the plagues and why would it be necessary until the last one to convince the pharaoh to let the Israelites leave?

2)      How does Yahweh show his part of his covenant with the Israelites?  What does he demand in return?

3)      What does the Decalogue (Ten Commandments) show about humans and about their relationship with God?

4)      What kinds of problems could arise in Hebrew society and how are addressed and resolved?


Wednesday, September 23

The Prophetic Tradition

Kings, Isaiah, Ezekiel, Job

Sourcebook (pp. 31-44)

1)      What are prophets?  Why are they so important in the Hebrew religion and tradition?

2)      What does the story of Job say about the relationship between humans and Yahweh?


Friday, September 25

The Persians: Empire and Cultural Connections

Textbook, chap. 6, pp. 133-47

1)      What were some of the problems faced by any society in this part of the world?

2)      How did the Persian Empire expand? How far did they reach?

3)      How was the Persian Empire ruled?  How did they treat the local peoples?

4)      What is Zoroastrianism and how does it differ from Judaism?