Norman Golb (born 1928) is the Ludwig Rosenberger Professor in Jewish History and Civilization at the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago. He earned his PhD from Johns Hopkins University in 1954. He joined the faculty of the Hebrew Union College, Cincinnati in 1958 before settling at the University of Chicago, where he has worked since 1963. Golb has also been a visiting scholar at the University of Wisconsin (1957–58), Harvard University (1966), and Tel Aviv University (1969–70).
Golb has been a key proponent of the viewpoint that the Dead Sea Scrolls found in Qumran were not the product of the Essenes, but rather of many different Jewish sects and communities of ancient Israel, which he presents in his book Who Wrote The Dead Sea Scrolls?: The Search For The Secret Of Qumran. In the 1990s, Golb was an advocate for the freeing of the Scrolls for general scholarly studies.
Golb was also the discoverer, in 1962, of the Kievan Letter, the earliest document attesting to Jewish habitation of Kiev. He also identified Obadiah the Proselyte as the author of the oldest known manuscript of Hebrew music (12th century), the earliest extant legal record of the Jews of Sicily, a new document dealing with the First Crusade and new manuscript materials relating to the Jews of Rouen. Finally, he recovered a genizah document describing a European convert to Judaism (11th century) and an original manuscript of the Khazars.
He was born in Chicago, Illinois.