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The Yarbro Collins PPN

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  • E Bruce Brooks
    To: Synoptic Cc: GPG Cc: Undisclosed Individuals On: The Yarbro Collins Reconstruction of the PPN From: Bruce Following up on my 12 August posting of Adela
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 31, 2008
      To: Synoptic
      Cc: GPG
      Cc: Undisclosed Individuals
      On: The Yarbro Collins Reconstruction of the PPN
      From: Bruce

      Following up on my 12 August posting of Adela Yarbro Collins' plaintext
      reconstruction of the Pre-Markan Passion Narrative (PPN) at the Project web
      site, I have now added to the Project site the first of three detailed
      Critiques by myself. See:


      and scroll down to the list of contents. A small methodological thing of
      mine own is at the top of that list; a preprint from v1 of the Project's
      forthcoming journal. A passage of Mark is one of the three examples cited
      (the others are from the Iliad and the Analects of Confucius; the methods
      for detecting interpolation are not confined to one language or culture).
      Comments and criticisms on that piece are most welcome also.


      The main thing, however, is Yarbro Collins, Mark (Hermeneia 2007) 819, where
      she prints as a block of text her reconstruction of the PPN. This (and her
      previous argument, in full detail) interests me because it seems that the
      PPN theory is one of the few places where the manifestly stratified nature
      of the Gospel of Mark is currently under serious discussion by reputable NT
      people. It therefore offers a chance to consider in detail what is being
      done along these lines, at a fairly high level (not just everybody gets into
      the Hermeneia series).

      As will appear in this Critique and the two further ones to follow shortly,
      I find that Yarbro Collins is insightful in detail and generally right in
      substance (though I venture to second-guess a few of her decisions). I feel
      that she is wrong only in this: the features she notes as indicating
      stratification in the Passion Narrative (which for her comprises Mk
      14:32-15:38) are not limited to the Passion Narrative, but are found
      throughout Mark. The implication is that not just Mk 14-16, but all of Mark
      as we have it, is underlaid by a simpler prior narrative: an earlier textual
      state. This state I have been myself concerned to recover, over the past
      several years, by methods not unlike those applied by Yarbro Collins to the
      last part of Mark. I simply apply them to all of Mark. A report on that
      effort will appear presently.

      Meanwhile, discussion of the PPN proposal on either of the E-lists here
      addressed would be welcome. Adela herself will not be participating, but I
      have agreed to supply her with the substance of my own comments shortly
      before the SBL meeting in Boston this November.


      The dates to mark, on the calendars of those who will be at SBL and who are
      interested in the textual history of our earliest source for the original
      Historical Jesus as well as the later Theological Jesus (presently conflated
      in Mark, but in principle separable), are the following:

      *Saturday 22 Nov 08, 9-11:30 AM. Mark Group
      Liberty Ballroom A&B (Sheraton Hotel)
      This is a review session for the Yarbro Collins Mark Commentary. Panelists
      are: James W Voelz (presiding), plus Tom Shepherd, Rikki Watts, and J Keith
      Elliott, each with 20 minutes. There will be a 30-minute response by the
      author, followed by 60 minutes for general discussion. The issue of the PPN
      may or may not be raised by the reviewers or during the discussion; it is
      merely one of the possibilities. If raised, it is doubtful that it can be
      fully explored within the time available for if at this session, whence this
      second chance:

      *Monday 24 Nov 08, 7-8:30 AM. NT Quest 1
      Conference Room (Sheraton Hotel)
      This session has the theme Accretional Mark. It will provide an opportunity
      for further or de novo discussion of the Yarbro Collins PPN reconstruction,
      and also, if desired and if time allows, for my own reconstruction of the
      earliest layer of the entire Markan Gospel. Diagrams will be provided. (So
      will refreshments in lieu of breakfast; I will canvass the group later on,
      to determine how many we should provide for).

      Comments always welcome. There is more room for them on these lists at
      present, over the next two months, than there will be at both SBL sessions
      put together.


      E Bruce Brooks
      Warring States Project
      University of Massachusetts at Amherst
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