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Walter Brueggemann's unique gift of joining historical-exegetical insights to penetrating observations about the traumas and joys of contemporary life -- both personal and social -- is here forcefully displayed. Everyone who is familiar with his work knows the power of his speech about "doxological, polemical, political, subversive, evangelical faith" and about the ways such faith is enacted in the praise of ancient Israel and in the church. Readers of this book will find fresh insight into: the Psalms as prayer and praise, the categories of the Psalms, the social context in which psalms were prayed and sung, the theology of the Psalms, the dialogical character of the Psalms, justice and injustice in the Psalms, the study and "use" of the Psalms in the church, praise as an act of basic trust and abandonment, the impossible wonders of God's activity that overturn conventional ways of thinking and acting.