Lecture: The English Bible from King James to Robert Alter

Decorative book covers on the volumes of Robert Alter’s Hebrew Bible

Last December, W. W. Norton published the complete translation of The Hebrew Bible by Robert Alter. The work, which took Alter twenty-five years to complete, has been hailed as one of the most significant achievements in the history of English Bible translation by both admirers and critics of Alter’s text.

On November 5, Rabbi Dr. Michael Panitz will present a lecture and lead a discussion on this milestone work of scholarship, theology, and literature: From King James to Robert Alter: English Bible Translations, Then and Now. In his lecture, Rabbi Panitz will focus on four excerpts from Alter’s text:

  • Genesis 1:1 – 2:4
  • II Samuel 11:26 – 12:14
  • Psalm 27
  • Job 38 – 39

Volumes containing these Scriptures are available in the Library, and readers can receive a free copy of the excerpts by emailing a request to Harold Henkel (harohen@regent.edu). An excellent and accessible lecture with Alter explaining his goals as a Biblical translator is on YouTube.

The event will take place in the Library Gallery at 2:00 p.m. and will be live-streamed on Collaborate Ultra.

Rabbi Panitz was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary in 1982 and received his Ph.D. in Jewish history there in 1989. He served on the Seminary’s faculty until 1992 and has been the Rabbi of Temple Israel, Norfolk, since then. Dr. Panitz is also an adjunct professor of Religious Studies at Virginia Wesleyan University and an Adjunct Professor of Hebrew Language at Old Dominion University.