ABSTRACTVIOLA L. MCELVEEN. Identifying the Voice of the Teacher in the Thanksgiving Hymns (Hodayot) of the Dead Sea Scrolls(Under the direction of DR. JAMES D. TABOR) The central purpose of my thesis is to attempt to identify the methods and criteria used by scholars who have divided into "maximalist" and "minimalist" camps in determining the likelihood that within the Thanksgiving Hymns (1QH) or Hodayot we might identify the autobiographical voice of the Teacher of Righteousness. My method is to examine the ways in which the Teacher is described and understood both as to his career and his role, within the sectarian scrolls—primarily the Damascus Document (CD), the Habakkuk Pesher (1QpHab), and assorted fragments of Cave 4. I begin with a survey of the scholarship on the Thanksgiving Hymns. Next, I examine the references to the Teacher and the ways in which his pivotal role in history of the Community is portrayed in the sectarian scrolls. I then compare these results with portions of the Thanksgiving Hymns that have been most often identified as autobiographical, to ascertain whether one finds a close enough correlation to suggest his own hand at work in these materials. Finally, I attempt to draw some tentative conclusions on the question with attention to the possible challenges and limitations of my method and analysis.