Annual Report FY 2004 - Research at Cornell

07. Calum M. Carmichael, Comparative Literature/Law

Ideas and the Man: Remembering David Daube (Vittorio Klostermann, 2004). One of the twentieth century’s foremost legal scholars, David Daube used his knowledge of law to bridge the gap between humanism and religion and showed that the study of ancient law is uncannily relevant to how we function today. Daube’s career spanned the entire twentieth century, with equal periods of his life spent first in Germany, then in Great Britain, and finally in the United States. Crossing traditional disciplinary lines, he communicated in an urbane, lively manner with profound and often unexpected insights into the ancient world and into human conduct at all times and places. A major contribution was to revolutionize prevailing perceptions about the New Testament with his sophisticated understanding of how Talmudic law and literature illuminate that text. Carmichael, Daube’s former Oxford pupil and lifelong colleague, has created a memoir that captures the mischievous wit and spirit of enlightenment that Daube exuded in person and in his scholarship.

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