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  • By Anton11
    Jul 13, 2015
    It is a rare occasion for a book on the Nephilim/Giants to deliver the goods, but Dr. Judd Burton's book on the subject does just that. This book came highly recommended to me by a number of colleagues who had been singing its praises to me for a couple years. The subject has interested me as a student of the Bible and of history and so I took the plunge. This little book is a gem for a number of reasons. A lot of researchers take a crack at this subject, but here is someone who actually is trained as a historian and anthropologist plying his trade to a challenging problem. Dr. Burton says in the introduction and on numerous interviews that these essays have a general cohesiveness, but were written as individual studies, by-products of a sort from his dissertation (which I would love to read!) on the excavations of Caesarea Philippi near Mt. Hermon. As someone who has a background in humanities and anthropology, I can tell you--contrary to one reviewer--that this IS in fact... More > ethnohistory! But it's an ethnohistory that has NEVER BEEN DONE BEFORE! As far as the topic of giants goes, NO ONE has done this before--how EXCITING! We ought to be applauding Dr. Burton for his original approach to an age old question. It would be nice to have a giant skeleton on display--we all want that. But just because the physical evidence doesn't come with the book, does not detract from the contribution. He makes "no bones" about the book being anything other than a collection of individual studies and culture "sketches." Even so, the cohesion is present and reading the book is a lot like following breadcrumbs. There's not much in the way of fiction here--this is an exercise in anthropological and historical model-building, based on a laundry list of primary and secondary materials, in various languages. The information contained in this book is priceless. The only criticism that could possibly be leveled at the book is its occasional spelling errors, which even the best of editors sometimes miss. What I find is a passionate scholar, who keeps his imagination in check, while not strangling it at the same time. His arguments are novel, level-headed (when compared to similar works), and anything but fictive. This is honest work and valuable work at that. Dr. Judd Burton is the Jared Diamond of giantologists and we would do well to closely watch his future work. This book is a fantastic introduction and an enticingly fresh approach to the old giants.< Less
  • By gtolle0709
    Apr 14, 2015
    I'll start with my overall complaint about this genre of books, "Show me the skeleton!". That said... Having heard an old interview with Dr. Burton on the "Future Quake" podcast, I bought this book with trepidation. Much of the field of Nefilim studies is filled with truly astounding flights of imagination. This is not, necessarily, a bad thing in a work of fiction but it's awful in a work of non-fiction. With Dr. Burton's academic background, I was hoping for non-fiction. What I got was fiction. Dr. Burton presents what is known about the Nefilim but he presents a lot of his own speculations. This would have been fine but for three things. 1) He doesn't always clearly distinguish his speculation from previous speculations from the "facts" (always a nebulous concept in theological works). This is strong when he is reconstructing information on King Og of Bashan and Nimrod. He inserts ideological speculations about their psychology that are not strongly... More > supported by the "Tanakh" (OT). 2) He has a strongly biased theological stance and he's not afraid to retroject his 21st Century techno-bio-theological speculations into 2000+ year old theological works. Of course, he also writes this book from the absolute stance that the "Bible" is 100% true and accurate. Neither stance helps him get at the rich cultural understanding of these beings. 3) His cardinal "sin" is not developing his material. A chief rule of a work like this is to establish what is known then build on that material bringing in information from related cultures and supporting speculations on how the sparse information fits together. He does not do much of that. Instead, he'll often provide general information about some aspect of the Nefilim, not show the specific information, then jump to his conclusions with an "it's self-evident" wave of the hand. He referenced (rarely directly quoted) several Early Church writers then used their opinions to support his own without examining how they fit into the overall scheme of the cultural analysis. He calls it an ethnohistorical work. From what I understand of ethnohistory, this is not it. Even as a work of fiction, he jumps from poorly quoted core materials to full-blown speculation so quickly that any pleasure one might take in a well-crafted character development is missing. All that said, it is still one of the best books written in the field of Nefilim studies. Buy it but buy the electronic version.< Less
  • By dw_riggs
    Jun 3, 2010
    Book review: Interview With the Giant by Judd Burton On 11.23.09, In Reviews, Posted by Derek P. Gilbert DESPITE NEAR-UNIVERSAL skepticism from mainstream science — and most Christians — Judd Burton, director of the Institute of Biblical Anthropology, believes that the giants of Genesis 6 are to be taken literally. In fact, he suggests in his new book Interview With the Giant: Ethnohistorical Notes on the Nephilim, that the nephilim may have planted the roots of mankind’s earliest known civilizations. Burton, an historian and archaeologist by training, takes a scholarly look at a field of study that is admittedly thin on evidence — although one may suggest that it’s less the scarcity of evidence and more the interpretation of the evidence that has led most academics to dismiss research into literal giants as “fringe”. It is also possible, as Burton suggests, that some finds have simply gone missing from museum collections. Human skeletons as large as 25 feet were reportedly discovered... More > in Europe since the beginning of the 17th century, and dozens of unusually large remains measuring between seven and ten feet in height were discovered by farmers settling the Ohio River valley in the 19th century — some of which were sent back to Washington, D.C. and apparently lost by the Smithsonian. But rather than speculate, Burton focuses on the evidence at hand and attempts to reconstruct their history, like a forensic profiler, from the clues they left behind. He develops a fascinating, if necessarily incomplete, portrait of a race of brutal, fearsome warriors who left their mark not only on the Ancient Near East, but the entire antediluvian world. Because much of the textual evidence was handed down from Hebrew sources, such as the Old Testament and a few extrabiblical sources like the books of Enoch, Jasher, and Jubilees, most of what we know about the giants of old relates to the nephilim of the Ancient Near East. Given their history, this is no surprise; according to those sources, the nephilim were the product of an unholy cross-species mating between angels and human women. Burton names the various tribes or clans mentioned in the Bible, such as the Rephaim, the Emim, the Gibborim, the Zamzummim, and the Awwim, and provides maps to place them. He tells us what we know of specific giants, such as Og, the king of Bashan, and Goliath, the mercenary of Gath. He goes further, connecting the nephilim to demonic spirits and suggesting that their predatory, cannabalistic habits might be the origin of the legends of vampires. Drawing on his personal research at the archaeological dig at Banias in northern Israel, Burton draws fascinating links between Azazel, a leader of the fallen angels who descended from heaven at Mount Hermon to intermingle with humanity, and Pan, the lusty half-goat Greek god of shepherds and flocks. The Bible tells us that the goat upon which the Hebrews laid the sins of the tribe before it was driven into the desert was called Azazel, an echo of the punishment visited upon the angel Azazel for leaving his first estate. Since Banias, later known as Caesarea Philippi, is the site of the Grotto of Pan and nearly at the foot of Mount Hermon, Jesus’ choice of the place to reveal Himself as the Messiah to his disciples (see the Confession of Peter) was, in Burton’s view, a sort of cosmic “in your face” to the angels who’d chosen to rebel against God. Interview With the Giant is a quick and informative read on a fascinating and underappreciated topic, and Burton thoughtfully includes a chapter devoted to other sources that readers can investigate for further research. http://www.watchermagazine.com/?p=446< Less
  • By PID Publishing
    Nov 23, 2009
    DESPITE NEAR-UNIVERSAL skepticism from mainstream science — and most Christians — Judd Burton, director of the Institute of Biblical Anthropology, believes that the giants of Genesis 6 are to be taken literally. In fact, he suggests in his new book Interview With the Giant: Ethnohistorical Notes on the Nephilim, that the nephilim may have planted the roots of mankind’s earliest known civilizations. Burton, an historian and archaeologist by training, takes a scholarly look at a field of study that is admittedly thin on evidence -- although one may suggest that it's less the scarcity of evidence and more the interpretation of the evidence that has led most academics to dismiss research into literal giants as "fringe". It is also possible, as Burton suggests, that some finds have simply gone missing from museum collections. Human skeletons as large as 25 feet were reportedly discovered in Europe since the beginning of the 17th century, and dozens of unusually large remains... More > measuring between seven and ten feet in height were discovered by farmers settling the Ohio River valley in the 19th century -- some of which were sent back to Washington, D.C. and apparently lost by the Smithsonian. But rather than speculate, Burton focuses on the evidence at hand and attempts to reconstruct their history, like a forensic profiler, from the clues they left behind. He develops a fascinating, if necessarily incomplete, portrait of a race of brutal, fearsome warriors who left their mark not only on the Ancient Near East, but the entire antediluvian world. Because much of the textual evidence was handed down from Hebrew sources, such as the Old Testament and a few extrabiblical sources like the books of Enoch, Jasher, and Jubilees, most of what we know about the giants of old relates to the nephilim of the Ancient Near East. Given their history, this is no surprise; according to those sources, the nephilim were the product of an unholy cross-species mating between angels and human women. Burton names the various tribes or clans mentioned in the Bible, such as the Rephaim, the Emim, the Gibborim, the Zamzummim, and the Awwim, and provides maps to place them. He tells us what we know of specific giants, such as Og, the king of Bashan, and Goliath, the mercenary of Gath. He goes further, connecting the nephilim to demonic spirits and suggesting that their predatory, cannabalistic habits might be the origin of the legends of vampires. Drawing on his personal research at the archaeological dig at Banias in northern Israel, Burton draws fascinating links between Azazel, a leader of the fallen angels who descended from heaven at Mount Hermon to intermingle with humanity, and Pan, the lusty half-goat Greek god of shepherds and flocks. The Bible tells us that the goat upon which the Hebrews laid the sins of the tribe before it was driven into the desert was called Azazel, an echo of the punishment visited upon the angel Azazel for leaving his first estate. Since Banias, later known as Caesarea Philippi, is the site of the Grotto of Pan and nearly at the foot of Mount Hermon, Jesus' choice of the place to reveal Himself as the Messiah to his disciples (see the Confession of Peter) was, in Burton's view, a sort of cosmic "in your face" to the angels who'd chosen to rebel against God. Interview With the Giant is a quick and informative read on a fascinating and underappreciated topic, and Burton thoughtfully includes a chapter devoted to other sources that readers can investigate for further research. The book is available in paperback and as a very affordable e-book (PDF) at Lulu.com.< Less
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Product Details

Publisher
Burton Beyond
Published
November 2, 2009
Language
English
Pages
132
Binding
Perfect-bound Paperback
Interior Ink
Black & white
Weight
0.55 lbs.
Dimensions (inches)
6 wide x 9 tall
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