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The Book of Job:
A Biography
Mark Larrimore

Book Description | Table of Contents
Introduction [in PDF format]


"Ever since the tale was told, writers and painters and poets and thinkers have tried to make sense of it. Scholar Mark Larrimore tells that tale--of the rolling interpretations--with such verve in The Book of Job: A Biography. It's a theology course, a philosophy course, a cultural history course and a very relevant meditation on life's trials all rolled into one. Incredible rate of ideas per inch."--Tom Ashbrook, WBUR "On Point"

"The Book of Job:A Biography is highly recommended."--Carole McDonnell, Compulsive Reader

"One of Larrimore's most interesting chapters discusses the liturgical use of Job in the medieval Office of the Dead, where quite long excerpts from Job's speeches appear as readings, interspersed with psalms of lamentation. . . . The Book of Job is . . . still a live issue, and certainly appropriate for treatment in a series such as this."--John Barton, Times Literary Supplement

"This book helps the readers in their struggle to articulate the meaning of the story while at the same time providing both comfort and provocation as it speaks to and for broken people who have suffered loss. A worthwhile addition to all synagogue and Hebrew School libraries."--Nathan Rosen, Association of Jewish Libraries

"This beautifully written and presented book should be compulsory reading for anyone concerned with the irrationality of life, atheist and believer alike. . . . Superb."--Canon Anthony Phillips, Church Times

"[A]n excellent summary of the historical and spiritual impact of this most controversial of biblical books."--Charles H. Middleburgh, Charles Middleburgh Blog

"This is a fascinating book, ideal for undergraduates, and one that for biblical scholars (Job scholars in particular) ought to be required reading."--Michael S. Moore, Society for Biblical Literature

"He perspicuously illuminates the philosophical and theological as well as spiritual backgrounds of the different works. Larrimore's . . . survey delivers insight into the long and sophisticated reception history of the suffering and rebellious Job and the disturbing biblical book carrying his name. This comprehensible presentation is in any case worth reading and a fine piece of writing on the reception history of a biblical book."--Agnethe Siquans, Society for Biblical Literature

"[A] remarkable book. . . . As captivating an introduction to Job as it is to the Bible's reception history and Western intellectual history. No small triumph for a handsome little book of less than 300 pages."--Davis Hankins, Theology Today


"As eloquent and engaging as it is carefully researched and richly insightful, Larrimore's biography of the Book of Job delves deeply into the staying power of this wonderfully disturbing story. An outstanding book from a gifted scholar and teacher."--Timothy Beal, author of The Rise and Fall of the Bible: The Unexpected History of an Accidental Book

"Larrimore provides an elegant and insightful survey of the ways that the Book of Job was transmitted and understood in writing, art, and interpretation. Written in a remarkably engaging style, this short book offers a broad view of how Job has been read and used by Jews, Christians, and secularists, from ancient to modern times. There is no more economical way of getting a sophisticated sense of the theological issues at stake in the Book of Job than in reading Larrimore's book."--Edward L. Greenstein, Bar-Ilan University

"In the brief compass of this well-researched, well-written, and well-illustrated book, Mark Larrimore has brilliantly captured the most salient aspects of the rich afterlife of the Book of Job, including the interpretations evident in translations and theological and philosophical writings, as well as in the literary, visual, and performing arts. This handsome and accessible volume tells the fascinating story of the reception of the biblical book through the centuries and across cultures."--C. L. Seow, Princeton Theological Seminary

"Larrimore gives Job a new lease on life with a deft and sometimes surprising selection of landmarks and defining moments. As with all great biographies, we feel he knows his subjects intimately, though he presents them to us with an admirable lightness of touch."--Yvonne Sherwood, University of Kent

"A most useful and enjoyable addition to the Joban literature."--Bruce Zuckerman, author of Job the Silent

"A superb general survey of the multiple uses of this remarkable book. The very multiplicity of those readings and performative uses, which could make work difficult for conventional biblical scholars, becomes grist for Larrimore's mill, and offers windows on Job's broader impact."--David B. Burrell, author of Deconstructing Theodicy: Why Job Has Nothing to Say to the Puzzle of Suffering

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File created: 8/16/2017

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