Sunday, February 28, 2016

2016.02.43

Response: Allen on Konstantopoulos on Allen, The Splintered Divine: A Study of Ištar, Baal, and Yahweh Divine Names and Divine Multiplicity in the Ancient Near East. Response to 2016.02.33

Response by Spencer L. Allen, King Fahd Center for Middle East Studies, University of Arkansas (allensl@uark.edu)

Version at BMCR home site

I would like to thank Gina Konstantopoulos for her recent review of my book, The Splintered Divine: A Study of Ištar, Baal, and Yahweh Divine Names and Divine Multiplicity in the Ancient Near East. I appreciate all of her kind words and welcome her criticisms as part of the continued dialogue about our modern conceptualizations of ancient deities in our fields of study. I am especially thankful that she brought to everyone's attention a previously unnoticed mechanical and technical error.

As she rightly notes toward the conclusion of the review, a few words were inadvertently deleted from the book's main body of text, whereas these same words do appear included in the book's index. Specifically, the words "witness list" (or "witness-lists," depending on the context) are missing, sometimes multiple times in a sentence. This is especially problematic in section 3.4, which happens to be titled "Witness-List Traditions." Naturally the absence of these words may make reading those sections of the book rather confusing.

Upon learning of this problem yesterday, the SANER editor Gonzalo Rubio, the De Gruyter project editor John Whitley, and I have reviewed our notes trying to discover the source of the error. After checking all sets of proofs, De Gruyter has concluded that these deletions occurred when the book's indexes were being compiled by a typesetter during the third round of proofs, in the final stages of production. This is an unprecedented error at De Gruyter and the publisher will put measures in place to prevent such an unusual mechanical error from happening again.

In its commitment to serious scholarship, De Gruyter is now producing a corrected version of the ebook, and all future reprints of my book will contain the corrected text as well. Moreover, a list of corrections will also be posted on the De Gruyter website for this title (http://www.degruyter.com/view/product/185993).

I would like to thank Bryn Mawr Classical Review for the opportunity to post this response and to direct people to the correction of this serious issue. On my own behalf and on behalf of everyone involved in this project, I would like to apologize to my readership for the confusion or irritation this might have caused you. Please rest assured that this is a one-time occurrence both for SANER and for De Gruyter, and that all future projects will proceed with the extreme care that has characterized the books printed by De Gruyter for over 260 years.

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