THE SPELLING EYE VERSUS THE LISTENING EAR: ORAL POETICS AND NEW TESTAMENT WRITINGS

Pieter J. J. Botha

Abstract


Concepts such as orality, media criticism, manuscript culture, oral reading and performance have been introduced to New Testament scholarship since the 1980s, but their impact on and contribution to mainstream research are still in question. A resurgent interest in these socio-cultural notions is raising fundamental questions about approaches to and conclusions about early Christian texts. Some of the implications and possibilities of these developments are reviewed and briefly illustrated. Rather than emphasising another method or “criticism” that could be “added” to the repertoire of biblical scholars, it is proposed that a multifaceted conceptualising of “speaking-hearing-remembering”, an “oral poetics”, inform NT scholarship.

Keywords


hermeneutics; orality; performance criticism; verbal art; poetics; oral traditional literature

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7833/117-1-1331

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ISSN 2305-445X (online); ISSN 0254-1807 (print)

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