Note: I am reproducing this paper here to 'fill in' a missing chapter in the early development of the New Chronology. Research on the NC began in the late 1970s when I took my ideas for a revised chronology of pharaonic Egypt to Peter James, who was at that time working on the 'Glasgow Chronology' (a modification of the chronological revision proposed by Immanuel Velikovsky). This began several years of joint research between Rohl and James which resulted in the chronological model outlined below. Subsequently Rohl and James developed independent variations of this basic model with Rohl continuing to argue for Ramesses II as the biblical Shishak, whilst James opted for Ramesses III as the pharaoh who plundered the treasures of Solomon's temple. I felt it would be useful to republish the 'first outing' of the New Chronology theory here since the original paper is difficult to find. It also serves to put the record straight about when and how the revision of the Third Intermediate Period took shape.
A Preview of Some Recent Work in the Field of Ancient History
By David Rohl & Peter James
SIS Workshop, vol. 5, no. 2, 1982/83
For some years now a number of the Society’s historians have been endeavouring to provide a new model for ancient Near Eastern chronology in an attempt to answer the criticisms levelled at Velikovsky’s work in Ages in Chaos, Ramses II and His Time and Peoples of the Sea. The original imaginative concept of Velikovsky’s reconstruction has run into serious problems with regard to the method by which the so-called ‘phantom years’ are eliminated from the conventional (and apparently extended) history of the region. Very few of the Society’s members would now be prepared to stand by the revision put forward in Ramses II and His Time and Peoples of the Sea although there is still a strong feeling that Ages in Chaos remains a true picture for the period of Egyptian history prior to the end of the 18th Dynasty.
As a result of this disquiet over Velikovsky’s later revision there grew a body of scholars whose objective was to provide an alternative method of reducing the history of Egypt by some 500 years as demanded by Ages in Chaos whilst retaining the synchronisms put forward in that volume. Some tentative steps in this direction were first made at the Glasgow Conference in April 1978, the Proceedings of which have now finally been published (SISR VI:1/2/3). Whilst it was agreed that Velikovsky’s separation of the 18th, 19th and 20th Dynasties was impossible, it was still hoped that a revised chronology for the ancient Near East could be developed with Ages in Chaos as its starting point. An incomplete model embodying this approach subsequently became known as the ‘Glasgow Chronology’.
Since the first airing of the ‘Glasgow Chronology’ much work has been done to substantiate the proposals therein (for example see John Bimson’s studies on ‘An Eighth Century Date for Merenptah’, SISR III:2 and ‘Dating the Wars of Seti I’, SISR V:1). However, in spite of this work and other more general attempts at an overall revision (see ‘A Solution for the Third Intermediate Period of Egypt’ by Phillip Clapham, SISW 4:3), little real progress has been achieved towards completion of this revision due to the immense task of reducing the chronology by such a large number of years. There was a growing feeling that such a revision, while it provided some promising synchronisms, could not be realistically achieved within the limited time-span dictated by Velikovsky’s date of c. 820 BC for the end of the 18th Dynasty.
Thus we arrive at the purpose of this communication to the membership of the S.I.S. For the last two years the writers, with the help of other historians, notably Geoffrey Gammon, have been actively pursuing yet another alternative revision – one which we hope involves no preconception based on anything which has gone before. The work has progressed slowly due to the immense amount of data that needs to be researched and collated but a new model for the history of Ancient Egypt is gradually evolving which appears to answer a great many of the anomalies of both the conventional and Velikovskian chronologies.
From the obvious interest of members aware of this research it is clear that some sort of ‘preview’ or synopsis of the revision would be of benefit to those who wish to follow up the points raised. As a result, the editors of Workshop have requested that we publish this article to serve as a guideline to the structure of Egyptian history resulting from our work. A much fuller analysis of the findings will be presented as a series of papers in the Review when the fine detail and corroborative evidence is finally collated. It will almost certainly be necessary to amend or review particular aspects of this chronology as new facts come to light and it must be stressed that the following conclusions are tentative guidelines pending completion of the necessary research – if that task can ever be concluded.
The synopsis given here will take the form of a list of points for readers to consider and check for themselves, the detailed arguments being reserved for the Review. At this stage it was felt unnecessary to provide references, footnotes and acknowledgements which, again, will find their proper place in the final articles. The list starts with the later dynasties which form the ‘Third Intermediate Period’ including the earliest unequivocal date in Egyptian history and journeys backward in time to reach the date for the Exodus proposed by Dr Velikovsky.
(A) General Considerations
(1) Eusebius (5th century AD), in his introduction to the Aegyptiaca of Manetho states:
… it must be supposed that perhaps several Egyptian kings ruled at one and the same time; for they say that the rulers were kings of This, of Memphis, of Sais, of Ethiopia, and of other places at the same time. It seems, moreover, that different kings held sway in different regions and that each dynasty was confined to its own nome; thus it was not a succession of kings occupying the throne one after the other, but several kings reigning at the same time in different regions.
Here we have an ancient writer (who quite likely had in his possession a fuller and less corrupted version of Manetho) stating his belief, from the evidence at hand, that the dynasties of Ancient Egypt were at some points in time existing side by side and contemporary to each other.
One such period of divided monarchy is specifically identified by classical sources. Herodotus and Diodorus Siculus both describe a ‘dodecarchy’ in which Egypt was ruled by twelve kings, prior to the accession of Psammetichus I (Psamtek) of the 26th Dynasty.
(2) The tradition of the ‘dodecarchy’ is confirmed by the considerable evidence of contemporary reigns in the Third Intermediate Period (21st to 25th Dynasties). Several joint cartouches have been found on both monumental inscriptions and small artefacts, including some definite double-datings giving simultaneous regnal years of two monarchs (such as the Nile Level Texts at Karnak).
Further proof of this pattern of multiple rule is provided by war annals from the end of the Third Intermediate Period (TIP) such as those of the Assyrian invader Ashurbanipal and the Nubian king Piankhy.
(3) The anomalies (from archaeological problems to the interpretation of genealogical material) that have come to light for the later periods of Egyptian history would be sufficient to fill a volume in their own right and serve to underline the need for a revision of TIP chronology, independently of the question of external synchronisms (or lack of them) raised by Dr Velikovsky.
These three general points lead us to suggest that the most fertile ground for a shortening of Egypt’s chronology is to be found in the era know to Egyptologists as the Third Intermediate Period conventionally placed in the years 1100 to 650 BC.
(B) The Proposed Revision
(1) 664/663 BC – the starting date. The second invasion of the Assyrian king Ashurbanipal and sacking of Thebes is accurately fixed by well-documented evidence from external sources (Mesopotamian and biblical chronology) and Egypt itself. The chronology of the 26th Dynasty beginning at this time is demonstrably sound (see Carl Olof Jonsson: ‘Nebuchadrezzar and Neriglissar’, appendix on ‘The Chronology of the 26th Dynasty of Egypt’, SISR III:4). The regnal years of this Dynasty known from the native records agree perfectly with the information given by the Greek historian Herodotus.
(2) The Assyrian annals describing the campaigns of Ashurbanipal list the names of twenty ‘kings’ ruling in different parts of Egypt, from which we can begin to build a chronology for the period prior to 664 BC. Ashurbanipal and his father Esarhaddon before him fought against the last two kings of the Ethiopian 25th Dynasty – Taharka and Tantamani who were contemporaries of the 26th Dynasty pharaohs Necho I (Niku) and his son Psamtek I (Nebushezibanni/Tushamilki). We are following here the well-established identifications of these rulers with the Necho and Psamtek of the monuments and not the erroneous suggestion of Velikovsky that these were other names for Ramesses I and Seti I – see the numerous articles in SISR refuting his identifications.
Most of the other vassal rulers included in Ashurbanipal’s list are usually considered by Egyptologists to be local ‘mayors’ in spite of the Assyrian description of them as ‘kings’ and, most strikingly, some bear distinctly familiar royal names such as Shoshenk, Pedubast and Nimlot. We hope to show that these individuals were the later monarchs of the 22nd and 23rd Dynasties whose reigns overlapped the beginning of the 26th Dynasty.
(3) From the death of Taharka in 663 BC we can back-calculate to the start of the 25th (Ethiopian) Dynasty. A slightly shorter time span for this Dynasty has already been argued by the Egyptologist Macadam, involving an overlap in the reigns of Taharka and his predecessor Shebitku from evidence on the Kawa stelae. Since the arguments against his proposals were borne largely from considerations based on the conventional chronology, there seems to be no good reason to reject Macadam’s interpretation – although his identification of Shebitku as the predecessor in question is also assumed from the conventional interpretation. Using Macadam’s approach we can reconcile the highest regnal years from the monuments with the figures given by Manetho and arrive at a date for the beginning of the Dynasty under Shabaka circa 710 BC.
(4) Working back from Necho I, we can place the earlier rulers of Manetho’s 26th Dynasty contemporary with the early 25th Dynasty, the latter being based predominantly in Upper Egypt and Napata in Ethiopia. Thus Ammeris, the first king of the 26th Dynasty, reigned during the time of Shebitku and his predecessor Shabaka.
(5) It is proposed here that this mysterious Ammeris, called by Manetho ‘the Ethiopian’ was none other than Usimare Piankhy and that his invasion of Egypt in Year 20 corresponds to the end of Ammeris’ ‘reign’ in the 26th Dynasty. Thus Stephinates, successor to Ammeris, was in fact Piankhy’s main adversary Tefnakhte – the prince of Sais, who following Piankhy’s return to Napata, threw off the Ethiopian domination in the Delta and became the second ruler of the 26th Dynasty. It must, however, be noted that Peter James has suggested a much lower date for Piankhy’s campaign, around 666 BC, which gives us an alternative dating for this king. This scheme will not discussed here due to lack of space but a full analysis of the two alternatives is planned for the Review articles. Both views would rule out the conventional placement of Piankhy’s invasion c. 728 before the reign of Shabaka.
(6) The Stela of Piankhy’s campaign states that the ruler of Busiris, in the delta was a ‘Chief of Ma’ Shoshenk and later the ‘Chief of Ma’ Pimay. We propose that these individuals should be identified with Shoshenk III and his son Pimay of the 22nd Dynasty. Thus the last (52nd/53rd) year of Shoshenk III corresponds to the 19th/20th year of Piankhy and the earlier part of the campaign narrative.
(7) Pimay was succeeded by Shoshenk V whose reign lasted a minimum of 37 years. This would take him into the reign of Psamtek where we find the cartouche of a Shoshenk alongside that of Psamtek I. He would also be the Susinku of the Ashurbanipal vassal king-list dated to 667. (The lower alternative date for Piankhy suggested in (5) would make this Susinku Shoshenk III.)
(8) The chronicle of the High Priest of Amun (HPA) – Prince Osorkon states that he served King Takelot II from the latter’s Year 11 to 25 and then under King Shoshenk III from Year 22 to Year 39. The conventional chronology interposes 21 years between these two periods of office, on the assumption that Takelot II and Shoshenk III reigned consecutively, and is forced to postulate that HPA Osorkon lost his hold over the Thebaid and ‘disappeared from the scene’ in the intervening years. We, however, contend that Year 22 of Shoshenk shortly followed the death of Takelot in his 25th year as the inscription logically suggests. This would mean that Shoshenk III began his reign in Busiris sometime during the 4th year of Takelot II. From the structure give so far we can calculate that start of Takelot’s reign to circa 745 (conventionally 850).
(9) In the conventional chronology it would have been highly unlikely for HPA Prince Osorkon to have eventually attained the throne as Osorkon III, since he would have been at least 73 years old (assuming a minimum age of 20 years when he became High Priest, plus 14 years under Takelot, plus 39 years under Shoshenk). Adding to this the 28 regnal years of Osorkon III, he would have died at the ripe of age of 101! By eradicating the erroneous 21 years of so-called ‘exile’, his identification with Osorkon III, dying at the age of 80, becomes eminently more feasible. This is strongly supported by another piece of evidence – Prince Osorkon’s mother was Karomama Merytmut, whilst Osorkon III gave his mother’s name as Kamama Merytmut.
(10) According to Nile Level Text No. 13, Osorkon III’s 28th year corresponded to the 5th year of Takelot III. These two kings were therefore contemporaries of the 25th and early 26th Dynasties. Osorkon III would be the king Osorkon mentioned on the Piankhy stela ruling Bubastis and Tanis, following the recently deceased Shoshenk III whom he had previously served as High Priest. Takelot III’s reign would therefore have fallen during the reigns of Shebitku and Taharka.
(11) The Wadi Gasus graffito concerning the God’s Wives Amenirdis and Shepenwepet gives us two reign dates which must be of two contemporary kings. The Year 19 would now belong to Osorkon III (Shepenwepet being his daughter) and the Year 12 to Taharka (Amenirdis being his sister). The date which corresponds to the event of the graffito based on these calculations would be c. 678.
(12) Going further back through the 22nd Dynasty. Takelot II was preceded by Osorkon II according to the conventional view and the available evidence seems to confirm this. However, Osorkon’s tomb, found by Mariette within the great temple enclosure of Tanis, has, since its discovery, been a subject of embarrassment for the accepted chronology. (See, for example, Velikovsky’s interpretation in Peoples of the Sea, II:ii, ‘Priest-Prince Psusennes’.) The archaeological evidence has confirmed that it was constructed prior to the adjacent tomb of the 21st-Dynasty king Psusennes I (Akheperre). In the accepted sequence of kings this would seen to be a complete impossibility, since the conventional chronology allows no overlap between the 21st and 22nd Dynasties and has Psusennes I reigning some 140 years before Osorkon II. It is our suggestion that Osorkon II did in fact reign as a contemporary of the 21st Dynasty and that Psusennes I (Akheperre) followed him as ruler of Tanis in the mid-8th century BC (rather than the conventional dates of 1039-991 BC).
(13) The presence of a ruler called Osorkon in Tanis at this time could finally resolve the problem of the identity of Osochor, 5th king in Manetho’s 21st Dynasty. To add weight to this hypothesis we find objects bearing the name of Amenemope (4th ruler of the 21st Dynasty) in the burial regalia of Osorkon II’s young son Harnakht who died prior to his father. Our revision would also explain this anomaly as Amenemope was the predecessor and contemporary of Osorkon – the latter reigned for a minimum of 23 years, for the last six of which he occupied the Tanite throne as Manetho’s Osochor following the death of Amenemope.
(14) There is absolutely no clear evidence to determine which of the two Psusennes of Manetho’s 21st Dynasty correspond to the kings Akheperre Psusennes and Tjetkheperre Psusennes of the monuments. The assumption has always been that as the latter was the father-in-law of a Libyan king Osorkon then he must be the last king of the 21st Dynasty, which according to the accepted scheme preceded the Libyan 22nd Dynasty. Another fallout of the conventional chronology has been that the king Osorkon in question, whose prenomen isn’t known, must have been the first Osorkon (Sekhemkheperre) of the 22nd Dynasty. Our revision, based on a substantial overlap of the two Dynasties, makes these assumptions unwarranted. The Osorkon who married the daughter of a Tanite pharaoh Psusennes becomes Osorkon II. With Osorkon II placed after Amenemope we find a far more satisfactory solution in suggesting that Tjetkheperre Psusennes was actually the first of that name in the dynasty and father-in-law of Osorkon II. Thus Akheperre Psusennes would now become the last king of the 21st Dynasty explaining why his tomb was constructed after that of Osorkon II. (Needless to say, this means that all the data normally attributed to the supposed long reign of Akheperre should be assigned to its rightful owner – Tjetkheperre, who now becomes the Psusennes I of Manetho with the 46-year reign.)
(15) Where we place Shoshenk I (Hedjkheperre) and Osorkon I (Sekhemkheperre) in this picture is as yet a matter for further study but it is interesting to note that in the Serapeum at Sakkara the Apis bulls buried during the reign of Ramesses XI were followed by an Apis burial in Year 23 of Osorkon II, with no interments from the 21st and early 22nd Dynasties! It is therefore conceivable that Osorkon II shortly followed the end of Ramesside 20th Dynasty and was the first Libyan monarch to be recognized in the ancient capital of Memphis. Accordingly, this Osorkon may have reigned before his ‘predecessors’ in the conventional chronology, Shoshenk (I) and Osorkon (I).
The list of Memphite priests of Ptah places Shedsunefertem, a contemporary of Shoshenk I (Hedjkheperre), shortly after the time of the last Psusennes. This would possibly place Shoshenk I in the late 8th century. Thus we have not excluded Velikovsky’s suggestion that Hedjkheperre Shoshenk was the Pharaoh ‘So’ who took tribute from Hoshea of Israel in 725 BC (see Ages in Chaos, iv: ‘Shoshenk’).
(16) The pharaohs of the 23rd Dynasty and others of this period fall within the time span commencing with Osorkon II and ending with the reign of Psamtek I. Their placement, as in the conventional chronology, is dependent on that of the contemporary 22nd and 25th Dynasties. There is no need to detail the arguments here as their occupation of royal office does not affect the overall results of the scheme presented in this article.
(17) We now come to a ‘grey area’ in the revision which is still to be fully developed.
According to our arguments so far, the reigns of Tjetkheperre Psusennes (21st Dyn.) and Osorkon II (22nd Dyn.) would have begun circa 800 and 760 respectively. In order for our 19th Dynasty synchronisms to link it would be necessary to postulate a short overlap of the Third Intermediate Period into the 20th Dynasty. The later Ramessides of the 20th Dynasty may have continued to reign into the period of Dynasties 21 and 22, up to either the beginning of Psusennes I’s reign or Osorkon II’s. This explains why the kings of this period claim to be ‘sons (sons-in-law?) of Ramesses’ and the extraordinary political situation that arose near the end of the 20th Dynasty. Documents of the period indicate the existence of an unstable government including the robbing of royal tombs, revolts amongst various factions within the populace and even a war within the high-priesthood.
Such an overlap may have been considerably shorter if we take into account other unknown factors in the chronology of this period such as:
(a) The length of the interregnum between 19th and 20th Dynasties, as described in the Papyrus Harris.
(b) Whether the so-called ‘Renaissance’ era at the start of the early 21st Dynasty began under Ramesses IX or XI.
(c) Uncertainties in the internal chronology of the 20th Dynasty itself.
(d) Our alternative placement for Piankhy which could, of course, lower the date for the beginning of the TIP by some 20 years.
In any case, our provisional date for the beginning of the 20th Dynasty under Setnakht would fall around the beginning of the 9th century BC, and the successors of Merenptah in the latter part of the 19th Dynasty would occupy the last quarter of the 10th century BC.
(18) The famous ‘Hymn of Victory’ of Merenptah (‘Israel Stela’), which states that ‘Israel is desolated and has no seed’, is now dated to only a few years after the sacking of the Temple of Solomon and the division of the monarchy.
(19) We now come to a major conclusion of our work – that is the true identity of Pharaoh Shishak. The Temple of Jerusalem was stripped of its treasures by the most famous of all the Egyptian kings who campaigned in Palestine – Ramesses II.
Considerable evidence seems to support this identification, some of which is summarized in the following points:
(a) An abbreviated form of the name of Ramesses II has been handed down to us by the Egyptian scribes, especially through documents relating to Palestine. This ‘nickname’, Sessy-[su], derived from the latter part of his nomen, was attached to the name of fortifications on the route to southern Palestine via Sinai and the city known as ‘Simrya of Sessi’ in northern Syria. The story of ‘Sesoosis’ in the works of Diodorus Siculus, and the parallel history of ‘Sesostris’ in Herodotus, clearly refer to Ramesses II and confirm the usage of this abbreviated form of his name in the ancient world.
(b) The Massoretic text of the Hebrew Bible we have today was transcribed by rabbinical scholars in the Middle Ages, who added ‘pointing’ to indicate vowel sounds and to differentiate between the sounds ‘sh’ and ‘s’. It is therefore quite possible that the name ‘Shishak’ could in fact be read ‘Sisak’. Moreover most of the vowels in ancient Egyptian writings, as in early Hebrew, were not indicated. As a result the names S-ssy-[su] and Sy-s-k are almost identical.
(c) Although the Bible only gives the usual ‘pharaoh’, Talmudic sources state that it was ‘Shishak’ who gave his daughter to Solomon as a wife. If this statement is accurate, it only needs a simple calculation to show that Shishak would have had to reign for some 40 years in order to have been king before year 10 of Solomon and still king in year 5 of Rehoboam. Neither the conventional candidate for Shishak, Shoshenk I (21 years), nor for that matter Velikovsky’s suggestion of Thutmose III (sole reign of 33 years following his suppression by Hatshepsut) would fit the long-reigning ‘Shishak’ as well as Ramesses II, who reigned for 67 years.
(d) During excavations at Byblos in Lebanon the tomb of a king Ahiram was discovered and amongst the funerary objects were found items with the cartouche of Ramesses II (see Ramses II and His Times, iii, ‘The Tomb of Ahiram’). Is it merely a coincidence that, during the reign of Solomon, the ruler of Tyre (whose domains almost certainly included the city of Byblos at this time), was a king Hiram?
(e) At the battle of Kadesh in Ramesses’ 5th year his almost vanquished army was rescued by a troop of soldiers referred to as the ‘Nearin’. In Hebrew this name (naarim) was given to a chosen group of young men formed as a fighting force of elitist troops, particularly in the early days of the Hebrew Monarchy. It would be interesting to picture the saviours of Egypt as the young men of Solomon’s Israel. This would have given Ramesses good reason to offer his daughter in marriage to the king of the Hebrews – the ally whose naarim had saved Ramesses II from the embarrassment of complete defeat at the hands of the Hittite king Muwatallis.
(f) Solomon’s Egyptian wife may well have been Bint-Anath, favourite daughter of Ramesses II by his second wife. Bint-Anath’s Semitic name – unparalleled for a daughter of Pharaoh – and her rank as ‘Great Consort’ could support the suggestion that Bint-Anath was the Egyptian princess given to Solomon with the destroyed city of Gezer as her dowry. In which case Bint-Anath may have been the Athyrtis, chief daughter of Sesoosis who encouraged her father’s conquests, mentioned by Diodorus Siculus.
(20) The habiru of the el-Amarna period and of the reign of Seti I now take their rightful place in history as the Hebrews, who in this reconstruction were the Israelites under Saul and David. Recent studies of the habiru in Palestine have shown them not to be an invading force from outside the region (such as Joshua and the Israelites at the time of the Conquest), or marauding nomads (as with Velikovsky’s Moabite tribes), but a populace already established in some urban areas with a growing measure of political control. The situation in Palestine depicted in the el-Amarna letters fits extremely well with the rapid extension of Hebrew domination (though they had already been long present in Canaan) in the time of king Saul. In particular, the activities of the habiru armies have been compared with the escapades of the young David and his band of followers, who changed allegiance between the Philistines and the kingdom of Saul as political fortunes dictated.
Various detailed links could be added, including the complaint of Adbi-Hiba of Jerusalem (who in our reconstruction would be one of the last rulers of the Jebus before its capture by David), in his letter to the Pharaoh Akhenaten, that various cities had gone over to the habiru, including Bethlehem, the home of David. Or the fact that in both the el-Amarna letters and the biblical account of Saul’s reign Beth-Shan was in the hands of troops from the town of Gath (Philistines).
(21) The 18th Dynasty in Egypt now occupies the time of the later Judges of the Bible, whilst the Hyksos dynasties ruled during the Conquest and early Judges period.
(22) There is no need to extend the Second Intermediate Period beyond the duration already assumed in the conventional chronology (from such sources as the Turin Canon). The revision proposed by Velikovsky, of course, requires a doubling of the Hyksos period to some 400 years in order for his 18th-Dynasty synchronisms to fit with the Solomonic era. Likewise the Late Bronze I period (linked with the beginning of the Judges/Hyksos era and the early Hebrew Monarchy) need not be stretched to the length originally suggested in John Bimson’s revised stratigraphy. Several lines of evidence suggest that the Second Intermediate Period should be shortened rather than extended.
(23) Velikovsky’s date for the Exodus remains located at the end of the Middle Kingdom just prior to the Hyksos invasion circa 1450 BC. We therefore retain Velikovsky’s identification of the Hyksos with the invading Amalekites at the time of the Exodus.
This revision, of course, is concerned largely with internal Egyptian chronology and does not take into consideration the problems of Assyrian and Babylonian chronology. Work is at present under way in these fields to overlap the reigns of the Assyrian kings in order to synchronize the el-Amarna Period with the time of Ashuruballit I. Although the task is a difficult one, some promising indicators are coming to light which make us hopeful of a satisfactory solution, certainly more so than within the shorter revised chronology proposed by Velikovsky given the constraints of Assyrian chronology. It is also noteworthy that the revision suggested here accords extremely well with the uncalibrated radiocarbon dates for the Egyptian New Kingdom which are on the whole too high for the Velikovskian model, and too low for the conventional chronology.
Finally, we would like to remind the reader, once more, that the above proposals are very much the result of speculative ‘work in progress’ and subject to reassessment – we hope, all the same, that this synopsis may stimulate discussion and criticism from other members of the Society working in the field.