1997 0-7734-2429-6 This study examines the possibility that Qoheleth's main canonical function may be to grant integrity and comfort to sensitive and thoughtful believers who see the harsh reality of life and God's apparent indifference to it. It also struggles with issues in hermeneutics with regard to the problematics between exegesis and theology which Qoheleth acutely presents in the canon and for theology. The introduction deals with some introductory matters in Qoheleth studies (death and emotional effects in Qoheleth, scepticism/pessimism and form criticism of the book), followed by a new English translation. Part I employs historical criticism in the exegesis of Qoheleth. Part II looks at alternative theological and literary views to wisdom and Qoheleth.