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August 3, 2016




Jay C. and Ruth Halls-Bascom Professor of Hebrew  Emeritux
University of Wisconsin-Madison

2815 Chamberlain Ave.

Madison, WI 53705


Home Page: http://imp.lss.wisc.edu/~mfox/ Home

PDF copies of my articles can be found at  http://wisc.academia.edu/MichaeFox/


I.   Education
II.  Employment
III. Fellowships, Grants, and Honors
IV. Publications


Main field:            Hebrew Bible
Secondary field:   Egyptian Literature


B.A. (1962) and M.A. (1963), University of Michigan (Near Eastern Studies)
Rabbinical ordination (1968): Hebrew Union College
Ph.D.(1972): Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Hebrew Bible and the Ancient Near East)

Postdoctoral study in Egyptology at Liverpool University (1974-75) as Leverhulme Fellow. Honorary Doctorate of Hebrew Letters, Hebrew Union College, 1993
Languages: Hebrew (all periods), Greek, Egyptian, Ugaritic, Aramaic, Syriac, Canaanite dialects; German, French, some Italian.


1971-74    Instructor, then Lecturer in Bible at Haifa University and the University of the Negev
1975-77    Lecturer in Bible and Egyptology at the Hebrew University
1977-     Assistant Professor to Professor (1984), UW-Madison
1982-87, 1993-99, 2010    Chairman of the Hebrew Department

Jan. 2010- Emeritus

Affiliate Professor, University of Haifa



Editor, Hebrew Studies, 1986-93

Editor, SBL Dissertation Series, 1994-99.

President, Society for Biblical Literature, Midwest region, 1998-2000

President, National Association of Professors of Hebrew, 2003-2005

Fellow, American Academy of Jewish Research, 2000-

Vice-President, Society for Biblical Literature, 2015

IV. PUBLICATIONS: A: Books; B: Articles C: Reviews; D: Editorial. Abbreviations at end.

Many of my articles are available in pdf format at academia.edu (http://wisc.academia.edu/MichaeFox/Papers)

A. BOOKS top

Love Songs from Ancient Egypt [Hebrew] Magnes Press, Jerusalem (123 pp.)
The Song of Songs and the Ancient Egyptian Love Songs.

: University of Wisconsin Press. Reprinted 1989, 1999, 2005 (454 pp.).

[Popular commentaries on] Qohelet and Song of Songs in Olam Hatanakh [Hebrew], with Yaakov Klein. Tel Aviv: Revivim.

Qohelet and His Contradictions. JSOTSup 71. Sheffield Academic Press. Second printing, 1989 (383 pp.).

Character and Ideology in the Book of Esther. Univ. of South Carolina Press (317 pp).
The Redaction of the Books of Esther. SBLMS 40. Atlanta  (195 pp.).

A Time to Tear Down and a Time to Build Up: A Rereading of Ecclesiastes. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Eerdmans (422 pp.). Reprinted 2010 Wipf & Stock.

Proverbs 1-9 (Anchor Bible 18A = vol. I), Doubleday).


Character and Ideology in the Book of Esther. Second edition [see 1991] with an Afterword: A Decade of Esther Scholarship. Grand Rapids, Mich.:  Eerdmans. Reprinted 2010 Wipf & Stock.


Ecclesiastes: A Commentary. Jewish Publication Society.



Proverbs 10-31 (Anchor-Yale Bible 18B = vol. II). Yale University Press.

Proverbs: An Eclectic Edition with Introduction and Textual Commentary. The Hebrew Bible: A Critical Edition, vol. 30. General Editor: Ronald Hendel. Atlanta: Society for Biblical Literature Press,.

In Progress:
Job: A Commentary. OT Library. Westminster/John Knox Press.



From the Pharaohs to the Rabbis: an Intellectual History of Wisdom Literature. Brill.


"Aspects of the Religion of the Book of Proverbs," HUCA 39, 55-69.

1971; second edition: 2003
Items in Encyclopaedia Judaica:
Ecclesiastes (2nd edition)
Erman, Joh. P.A.
Blessing of Moses
Noth, Martin
Song of the Sea

The Concept of Divinity in Didactic Wisdom Literature [Hebrew]. Beer Sheva 1:162-70.

"Jeremiah 2:2 and the 'Desert Ideal,'" CBQ 35: 441-50.

"Tob as Covenant Terminology," BASOR 209: 41f.


"The Sign of the Covenant: Circumcision in the Light of the Priestly 'ot Etiologies," Revue Biblique 81: 557-96.

Qohelet [Hebrew], Encyclopedia Miqra'it, vol. VII, 70-83.

byyl lishney in b. Men. 65b" [Hebrew], Leshonenu 41:75.

"A Study of Antef," Orientalia 46:393-423.

"Frame-narrative and Composition in the Book of Qohelet," HUCA 48:83-106.

[Comment on] John Donne's "A Nocturnal upon S. Lucies Day," The Explicator 36: 24.

"Unsought Discoveries: Qohelet 7:23-8:1a," HS 19: 26-38 (with B. Porten).


"The Cairo Love Songs," JAOS 100:101-109.

"The Identification of Quotations in Biblical Literature," ZAW 92:416-31.

"'Love' in the Love Songs," JEA 66:181-82.

"Two Decades of Research in Egyptian Wisdom Literature," ZÄS 107:120-35.

"The Rhetoric of Ezekiel's Vision of the Valley of the Bones," HUCA 51:1-15. (Anthologized in R. P. Gordon, ed., The Place is too Small for Us: Israelite Prophets in Recent Scholarship. Eisenbrauns, 1996.)

"Job 38 and God's Rhetoric," Semeia 19:53-61.

"The `Entertainment Song' Genre of Egyptian Literature," Studies in Egyptology, Scripta Hierosolymitana 28: 268-316.

"Scholia to Canticles (i 4b, ii 4, i 4a, iv 3, v 8, v 12)," VT 33:199-206.

"Love, Passion, and Perception in the Song of Songs and the Ancient Egyptian Love Songs," JBL 102:219-28.

"Ancient Egyptian Rhetoric," Rhetorica 1:9-22. (Anthologized in The Maxims of Ptahhotpe, ed. E. Blythin; Las Vegas, NV, 1986.)

"Some Love Songs from Ancient Egypt," Wisconsin Academy Review 29:36-40.

"The Structure of the Book of Esther," I. L. Seeligmann Memorial Volume, Jerusalem, pp. 291-304.

"Egypt" in Sign, Symbol, Script, ed. K. N. Schoville, pp. 23-28. Madison, WI.

"Four Love Songs from Ancient Egypt [Hebrew]Shnaton 7/8:187-214.

"LXX Proverbs 3:28 and Ancient Egyptian Wisdom." HAR 8:63-69.

"The meaning of hebel for Qohelet." JBL 105:409-26.

"Egyptian onomastica and biblical wisdom." VT 36:302-10.


"Qohelet's epistemology." HUCA 58:137-56.

"On footnotes." HS 28:6-8.


"Qohelet 1.4." JSOT 40:109.

"Aging and death in Qohelet 12:1-7: a Three-Fold Interpretation." JSOT 41:55-77.

(Anthologized in Reflecting with Solomon: Selected Studies on the Book of Ecclesiastes, ed. R. B. Zuck [Grand Rapids, MI] 1994. Anthologized also in the The Poetical Books: A Sheffield Reader, ed. D. J. Clines [Sheffield, 1996].)


"The religion of the Book of Esther." Judaism 39: 135-47.


"The `Soules Language' in the Song of Songs." The Solomon Goldman Lectures, 5: 33-44. Chicago: Spertus College of Judaica.

"The Alpha Text of the Greek Esther." Textus 15: 27-54.

"The redaction of the Greek Alpha Text of Esther." Sha`arei Talmon (S. Talmon Jubilee Volume), pp. 207-20. Ed M. Fishbane and E. Tov. Winona Lake: Eisenbrauns.

"Egyptian Love Songs." Anchor Bible Dictionary, II 393-95. NY: Doubleday.

"Words for Wisdom." ZAH 6: 149-69.

"Wisdom in Qohelet." In Search of Wisdom. Essays in Memory of John Gammie, ed. Leo Perdue (Phila.: Westminster), 1993, pp. 115-32.

Annotations to the Song of Songs for The NRSV: Harper's Annotated Edition, pp. 1000-10 (NY: Harper Collins).

"Love Poetry: Hebrew". Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics. (Princeton, NJ). 711.

"The Pedagogy of Proverbs 2." JBL 113: 233-43.

"World-Order and Ma`at: A Crooked Parallel," JANES 23: 37-48.

"The Uses of Indeterminacy." Semeia 71: 173-91.


"'Amon Again." JBL 115: 699-702.

"The Strange Woman in Septuagint Proverbs." JNSL 22: 31-44.

"The Social Location of the Book of Proverbs." Pp. 227-39 in Texts, Temples, and Traditions (see below). 


"Ideas of Wisdom in Proverbs 1-9." JBL 116: 613-33.

Translations of the prayer of Re-Harakhti and Egyptian Love Songs in Context of Scripture, ed. Wm. Hallo (Leiden) 47-48, 125-30.

"What Happens in Qohelet 4:1-13." JHS 2, article 4.

"Who Can Learn? A Debate in Ancient Pedagogy." In Wisdom, You Are My Sister" (Essays in Honor of R. E. Murphy), ed. M. Barre'. CBQMS 29. Washington, D.C. pp. 62-77.

"Words for Folly." ZAH 10: 4-17.

"What the Book of Proverbs is About." Congress Volume (Cambridge 1995), ed. J. E. Emerton. VTSup 48: 153-67. 


z"Qohelet's Catalogue of Times." JNSL 24: 24-39.

"Out of Egypt:  An Essay on Jan Assmann's Moses the Egyptian." Critical Rev. of Books in Religion 11: 83-96.


"Qohelet: History of Interpretation." Dictionary of Biblical Interpretation, 2.346-54. Nashville: Abingdon.

"Erziehung--Biblisch." Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart. 2 cols.

"L'amour chanté en Egypte" (trans. F. Mébarki). Le monde de la Bible 128: 30-32  (trans. F. Mébarki).
"Wisdom in the Joseph Story." Vetus Testamentum 50: 1-16.
"Proverbs" and "Ecclesiastes," Reader's Guide to Judaism (Chicago: Fitzroy Dearborn) 153-56, 506-08.

"Translation and Mimesis." In Bible Translation in Context. Ed. F. W. Knobloch (Studies in Jewish History and Culture 10). Bethesda: University Press of Maryland, pp. 207-21.



Proverbs: Annotations. Oxford Jewish Study Bible. OUP.

"Wisdom Performance and the Self-Presentation of Wisdom Literature." Pp. 153-72 in Reading from Right to Left: Essays on the Hebrew Bible in honour of David J. A. Clines, ed. J. Cheryl Exum and H.G. M. Williamson (JSOTSup 480; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 153-72).

"Three Esthers." In The Book of Esther in Modern Research: Esther 2000. Ed. S. Crawford White and L. Greenspoon. JSOT 380. Sheffield Academic Press, pp. 50-60.



"The Rhetoric of Disjointed Proverbs," JSOT 29: 165-77.



"LXX-Proverbs as a Text-Critical Resource". Textus  22: 95-128.

"Job the Pious." ZAW 117: 351-66.



"Editing Proverbs: The Challenge of the Oxford Hebrew Bible." JNSL 32: 1-22.

"Bible Scholarship and Faith-Based Study: My View." SBL Forum, Feb. 2006.




"The Epistemology of Proverbs." JBL 126: 669-84.

"Ethics and Wisdom in the Book of Proverbs." HS 48: 75-88.



"Wisdom Literature." JPS Study Guide to the Bible. Jewish Publication Society.

"Concepts of Wisdom in the Book of  Proverbs." Pp 381-98 in Birkat Shalom: Shalom Paul Jubilee Volume. Ed. B. Schwartz , V. Hurowitz, et al. Winona Lake: IN: Eisenbrauns, 2008.

"Scholarship and Faith in  Bible Study,"  in Secularism and Biblical Studies, ed. Roland Boer (Equinox)



"The Dating of the Composition of Proverbs 10-29" [Hebrew].  Meḥqarim BeLashon 11-12: 245-60 (Avi Hurvitz Festschrift).
"The Formation of Proverbs 22:17-23:11." Welt des Orients 38: 22-37.



"Esther" and "The Greek Esther", in The Eerdmans Dictionary of Early Judaism. Eds. D. Harlow, J. Collins, Joseph John. Grand Rapids.



"Concepts of Wisdom in the Book of Proverbs" [Hebrew]. Pp. in Wisdom, Her Pillars Are Seven; ed. by S. Yonah and V. A. Hurowitz (Beer Sheva 20:  13-24).

"Reading the Tale of Job (Job 1:1-2:13 + 42:7-17)." In A Critical Engagement: Essays on the Hebrew Bible in Honour of J. Cheryl Exum. (Hebrew Bible Monographs Series 38), pp. 162-79. Edited by J. David Clines and Ellen van Wolde. Sheffield-Phoenix Press.  



"Joseph and Wisdom." Pp. 231-62 in The Book of Genesis (eds. Craig A. Evans, Joel N. Lohr, David L. Petersen; SVT 152; FIOTL; Leiden: Brill.

"Behemoth and Leviathan." Biblica 93: 261-67.



"God's Answer and Job's Response." Biblica 94: 1-23.

"Text Criticism and Literary Criticism" in Built by Wisdom, Established by Understanding": Essays in Honor of Adele Berlin, College Park, MD: University of Maryland.

"How The Peshitta of Proverbs Uses the Septuagint." Journal of Northwest Semitic Languages 39, 37-56.



"Additions to Esther": Introduction and Annotations. Pp. 97-110 in Outside the Bible: Ancient Jewish Writings Related to Scripture; ed. James Kugel and L. Schiffman. Jewish Publication Society/University of Nebraska Press.

"From Amenemope to Proverbs: Editorial Art in Proverbs 22,17-23,11." ZAW 126 (2014) 76-91.

"A Profile of the Septuagint Proverbs." Wisdom for Life: Essays in Honor of Maurice Gilbert. Ed. by N. Calduch-Benages (BZAW 445), pp. 3-17.



"The Women in Esther. " http://thetorah.com/the-women-in-esther/


"Three Theses on Wisdom. " Pp. 69-86 in Was There a Wisdom Tradition?: New Prospects in Israelite Wisdom Studies. Ed. by Mark Sneed. Atlanta: Society for Biblical Literature. 2015.



Rereading The Song of Songs and the Ancient Egyptian Love Songs Thirty Years Later. WdO 46: 8-21.



Y. Grinz, Proverbs, Stories, ... in Ancient Egypt [Hebrew], Kiryat Sefer 51:177-179.

M. Haran, Temples and Temple Service, HS 20-21, 213-215.

T. Muraoka, Modern Hebrew for Bible Scholars, HS 23, 251-52.

R. Alter, The Art of Biblical Narrative, Journal of Reform Judaism, 105-108.

Proceedings of the Eighth World Congress of Jewish Studies. HS 24, 233-235.

Erik Hornung, Conceptions of God in Ancient Egypt. BA 47:187-88.

Eretz Israel 16 (H. M. Orlinsky Festschrift). HS 25: 177-80.

Scandinavian Journal of the OT. HS 28:200f.

Compucord (Software). HS 28:218-22.

D. J. Clines, The Esther Scroll. HS 29.

I. Band. HS 30:201.

Bo Isaksson, Studies in the Language of Qohelet (1987). JBL 108:510-12.

Lisa Manniche, Sexual Life in Ancient Egypt (1987). JAOS 110: 757-58.

F.-J. Steiert, Die Weisheit Israels - ein Fremdkörper im Alten Testament?(1990). JBL 111: 134-37.

Claus Westermann, Wurzeln der Weisheit (1990). JBL 111: 529-32.


D. Snell, Twice Told Proverbs (1993). Crit. Rev. of Books in Religion 8:147-54.


S. Weeks, Early Israelite Wisdom (1994). JAOS 116: 138ff.

H. Washington, Wealth and Poverty in the Instruction of Amenemope and the Hebrew Proverbs (1994). JAOS 282-4.

S. Weitzman, Song and Story in Biblical Narrative (1997). JQR 90: 176-79.

C. G. Bartholomew, Reading Ecclesiastes (1998). Interpretation54: 195-98.


Knut Martin Heim, Like Grapes of Gold Set in Silver (2001). HS 44 (2003) 267-72.


Gerhard Tauberschmidt, Secondary Parallelism: A Study of Translation Technique in LXX ( Atlanta, Ga.: SBL, 2004). Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org/pdf/4192_4111.pdf].



Yohan  Pyeon, You Have Not Spoken What Is Right About Me (N.Y:  Peter Lang, 2003). H S 46: 427-430.



Katharine Dell, The Book of Proverbs in Social and Theological Context (Cambridge 2005). Catholic Biblical Quarterly 70: 109-10.



Alice M. Sinnott, , Personification of wisdom (London : Ashgate, 2005). Expository Times 118: 614-615.


Leo G. Perdue, The Sword and the Stylus: An Introduction to Wisdom in the Age of Empires (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2008). Dead Sea Discoveries.

Leo G. Perdue, Scribes, Sages, and Seers: The Sage in the Eastern Mediterranean World. (Goettingen: Vanderhoeck & Ruprecht, 2008). Dead Sea Discoveries.


Samuel L. Adams, Wisdom in Transition: Act and Consequence in Second Temple Instructions (Leiden: Brill, 2008).  Dead Sea Discoveries. 18 (2011) 247-49.

Scott C. Jones, Rumors of Wisdom: Job 28 as Poetry (BZAW 398; Berlin: de Gruyter, 2009). JAOS 2011.




Assoc. Editor, Hebrew Studies, 1982-85

Editor, Hebrew Studies, 1986-93

Volume Editor, Temple in Society (Winona Lk., IN: Eisenbrauns, 1988)

Journal of Biblical Literature Editorial Board, 1991-1996, 2008-

Occasional referee: Hebrew Union College Annual, Hebrew Annual Review, and various academic publishers

Editor, SBL Dissertation Series, 1994-99.

Editor (with others), Texts, Temples and Traditions: Essays in Honor of Menahem Haran (Winona Lake, Ind.: Eisenbrauns, 1996).

Journal of Hebrew Scriptures Editorial Board, 1995-

Mo`ed (journal) Editorial Board, 2002-06.

Volume Editor. The Art of the Aphorism. JSOT 29 (2004).



Society for Biblical Literature+

National Association of Professors of Hebrew

Committee for Academic Freedom and Rights, University of Wisconsin

International Advisory Board for Academic Freedom at Bar-Ilan University, Israel

Affiliated Professor, Haifa University

BA = Biblical Archaeologist; BETL = Bibliotheca Ephemeridum Theologicarum Lovaniensium; CBQ = Catholic Biblical Quarterly; HAR = Hebrew Annual Review; HUCA = Hebrew Union College Annual; JANES = Journal of the Ancient Near Eastern Society; JAOS Journal of the American Oriental Society; JBL = Journal of Biblical Literature; JHS = Journal of Hebrew Scriptures (www.ualberta.ca/ARTS/JHS/jhs.html); JNSL = Journal of Northwest Semitic Languages; JQR = Jewish Quarterly Review; JSOT = Journal for the Study of the Old Testament; SBL = Society for Biblical Literature; VT = Vetus Testamentum; VTSup = Vetus Testamentum Supplements; ZAH = Zeitschrift für Althebraistik