Early Christian and Jewish Narrative
The Role of Religion in Shaping Narrative Forms
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Publisher: JCB Mohr (Paul Siebeck)
Number of Pages: 381
Width: 23.9 cm
Height: 16.4 cm
The authors of this volume elucidate the remarkable role played by religion in the shaping and reshaping of narrative forms in antiquity and late antiquity in a variety of ways. This is particularly evident in ancient Jewish and Christian narrative, which is in the focus of most of the contributions, but also in some "pagan" novels such as that of Heliodorus, which is dealt with as well in the third part of the volume, both in an illuminating comparison with Christian novels and in an inspiring rethinking of Heliodorus's relation to Neoplatonism. All of these essays, from different perspectives, illuminate the interplay between narrative and religion, and show how religious concerns and agendas shaped narrative forms in Judaism and early Christianity. A series of compelling and innovative articles, all based on fresh and often groundbreaking research by eminent specialists, is divided into three large sections: part one deals with ancient Jewish narrative, and part two with ancient Christian narrative, in particular gospels, acts, biographies, and martyrdoms, while part three offers a comparison with "pagan" narrative, and especially the religious novel of Heliodorus, both in terms of social perspectives and in terms of philosophical and religious agendas. Like the essays collected by Marília Futre Pinheiro, Judith Perkins, and Richard Pervo in 2013, which investigate the core role played by narratives in Christian and Jewish self-fashioning in the Roman Empire, the present volume fruitfully bridges the disciplinary gap between classical studies and ancient Jewish and Christian studies, offers new insights, and hopefully opens up new paths of inquiry.