Reviews of Amos: Hypertext Bible Commentary

Review by R.E. Clements in John Day (ed.), Society for Old Testament Study Book List 2007, London: Sage, 2007, 70.

As the first in a new format of Bible commentary this disc contains a remarkable wealth of information. The centerpiece is a presentation of the text in English and Hebrew, with accompanying choice of sound files to hear it read. The commentary aims to be informative and to reflect Jewish and a range of Christian interpretation with summaries of mainstream approaches. This is backed up by detailed linguistic (word the study) information and historical and geographical background, further enhanced by a selection of photographs. The use of a split-screen presentation makes for easy navigation across different fields of interest. The aim of the project is to bring together a wide range of relevant information on to one disk; clearly many readers will already have access to what is included, but the convenience and compactness of what is offered at a very modest price is exceptional. Whether longer books can be treated as sumptuously as this one as the project develops will be a point to note with interest, but this is an impressive start to a very ambitious project.

Review by James R. Linville, The Catholic Biblical Quarterly 69, 2007, 316-318
Short extracts:
The potential for this kind of publication is immense, not only for textbooks and studies seeking to introduce scholarship to a wider audience but for specialized academic works as well. … The commentary’s format will doubtless influence how biblical studies are done in the future.

Review in International Review of Biblical Studies 52, 2005-2006, 162
For the pastor, the layman, and the beginning student (especially those students who are learning Hebrew), this is an ideal tool to get acquainted with the book of Amos and it's mid eighth-century BCE background. The user may call up individual verses, listen to it in English and (most welcome!) in Hebrew, study the running commentary, consult a dictionary that gives brief explanations of names and technical terms (and the like), and look up bibliographical references. The commentator offers sound explanations and refrains from even considering controversial Germanic notions of the book of Amos as a multi-layered text that grew over the centuries. It may well be that in the future, most Biblical commentaries will follow Bulkeley's model at least in its technical aspects. One can only hope the author continues his wonderful project.

Ehud Ben Zvi, review of Tim Bulkeley, Amos: Hypertext Bible Commentary, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2007).

Concluding paragraph:
We all owe a debt of gratitude to Tim Bulkeley for all his work in this important project. I see this Amos commentary as a version 1.0 that will, I hope, lead to further and better versions in which many of the problems mentioned here will be solved. I am aware that even this version represents an improvement over previous versions (notice, e.g., the wise removal of the term “postmodern” from the title of the series; cf. http://bible.gen.nz/), and I confidently hope that this process will continue and even accelerate.


This page is part of the HypertextBible.org website.

The review from Society for Old Testament Study Book List is reproduced by permission of the editor John Day. Other reviews are only quoted in extract. In each case the full review may be consulted in the journals cited.