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Until the 1970s biblical studies belonged to the historical-critical school and had reached a point where all problems were believed to have been solved. Then all assumptions began to be turned on their head. Previously, historical studies constituted the backbone of biblical studies; now, every aspect of biblical history began to be questioned. The idea of the Old Testament as a source of historical information was replaced by an understanding of the texts as a means for early Jewish society to interpret its past. 'Biblical Studies and the Failure of History' brings together key essays which reflect the trajectory of this scholarly shift in order to illuminate the state of biblical studies today. The early essays present historical-critical studies tracing historical information. Further essays employ a more critical and interpretive perspective to examine seminal issues ranging from the Hellenistic contexts of biblical tradition to the functioning of Old Testament society.