Rami Arav Stirs the Pot: How Archaeologists Debate the Issues
by James Tabor
I have previously posted links related to Israeli archaeologist Yosi Garfinkel’s finds at the ancient site of Khirbet Qeiyafa in the Elah Valley as well as the heated debate over the significance of his discoveries and the interpretation thereof. There is a new quite lively exchange now up at the web site Bible & Interpretation that serves as a good example of the kinds of exchanges that go on among professional archaeologists on controversial subjects.
Rami Arav, who is our lead archaeologist for the recent Talpiot “patio” tomb exploration, recently reviewed Garfinkel’s final excavation report in the Bulletin of the American Society of Oriental Research (364:93–97). Garfinkel and Ganor responded here, charging:
This review falsely attributes many absurd claims to the site’s excavators—for example, that the Iron Age city of Khirbet Qeiyafa was destroyed by rain. We reply here to 18 erroneous points in Dr. Arav’s review.
Arav has now replied to their reply just today, here. You don’t want to miss this one, for the substance of the issues, yes, but even more important to get a tiny glimpse into the fractious world of “Biblical” archaeology and its conflicts. Speaking of which, while you are at the web site you might browse the home page a bit or do a search, but don’t miss, in any case, Philip Davies recent post “Secular Values and Biblical Scholarship,” with Niels Peter Lemche’s comment and Tommy Thompson’s “Is This Jesus the Carpenter?” who mightily takes Bart Ehrman to task.