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Re: [John_Lit] RE: "Befriending the Beloved Disciple" or what are YOU reading this fall?

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  • Ramsey Michaels
    Jeff: I too have much appreciated Adele s book, especially taking into account that she comes to John s Gospel from a Jewish standpoint. Yet does not every
    Message 1 of 4 , Sep 19, 2002
      Jeff:

      I too have much appreciated Adele's book, especially taking into account
      that she comes to John's Gospel from a Jewish standpoint.

      Yet does not every reader, even the most devoutly Christian among us, assume
      at one time or another (whether we admit it or not) the mantle of each of
      these four "readerships": the compliant the resistant, the sympathetic, and
      the engaged (and maybe more)?

      Is Adele really telling us anything we did not already know in our hearts to
      be true?

      Ramsey Michaels


      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Staley, Jeffrey" <staleyj@...>
      To: <johannine_literature@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Thursday, September 19, 2002 10:59 AM
      Subject: [John_Lit] RE: "Befriending the Beloved Disciple" or what are YOU
      reading this fall?


      > Folks, I hope you have seen the review of Adele Reinhartz's new book
      > "Befriending the Beloved Disciple" at:
      > http://www.bookreviews.org/pdf/1631_2761.pdf
      >
      > It is also "on the table" to be discussed at the SBL in November. I used
      it
      > in class this past spring (undergrad class on FG), and students generally
      > found the book very provocative. "You mean there is more than ONE way to
      > read a text?" or "How can you study a book you don't believe in?"
      >
      > In an attempt to spark some conversation, I offer the following
      observations
      > on her book from a part of an essay on apocalyptic I have written (soon be
      > published). I have cut out all the comparisons to apocalyptic, to stay
      with
      > parts where I summarize Reinhartz's arguments for those of you who haven't
      > read her book.
      >
      > Jeff Staley
      >
      > In her recent book on the Fourth Gospel entitled Befriending the Beloved
      > Disciple: A Jewish Reading of the Gospel of John, Adele Reinhartz proposes
      a
      > thought-provoking, fourfold model for reading beyond that book's
      determinate
      > binarisms. Taking a cue from Wayne Booth's The Company We Keep: An Ethics
      of
      > Fiction, Reinhartz focuses on the ethical implications of what she terms
      > "compliant reading," "resistant reading," "sympathetic reading," and
      > "engaged reading" as she explores the Johannine metaphor of the Beloved
      > Disciple in four roles: the reader's mentor, opponent, colleague, and
      > "other." With each type of reading she asks two interrelated questions: 1)
      > What kind of "friend" is the Beloved Disciple to the different types of
      > readings-i.e. does the "implied author" "encourage" compliant, resistant,
      > sympathetic, or engaged readings of "his" text? and 2) What kind of reader
      > do we become when we read the text in these various modes? Reinhartz's
      > choice of metaphor opens up the reader's imagination to multiple active
      > reading strategies and challenges the normal understanding of what counts
      as
      > a "faithful," "friendly" reading of the Bible-where the faithful reader is
      > the one who "submits" to the determinate, ideological perspective of the
      > text without a critical engagement of its ethos or its literary
      > indeterminacies.
      > Reinhartz defines a "compliant reading" as one where readers accept
      > the implied author's "gift in the terms in which he offers it. . . . They
      > comply with the directions that the implied author describes."
      > Reinhartz's resistant reading is the mirror image of a compliant
      > reading. She argues that it "entails the effort systematically to read
      from
      > the point of view of the Other as defined by the text or genre under
      > discussion." From Reinhartz's perspective, the problem with resistant
      > readings is that they "cannot overcome or bypass the rhetoric of binary
      > opposition [in FG]but rather reproduce them in reverse."
      > The final pairing of readings are the most interesting and
      > challenging for contemporary Christians. Reinhartz defines a sympathetic
      > reading as one in which the implied author is a "colleague, . . . a peer
      who
      > struggles with similar issues in similar ways [as I do]," but without
      being
      > engaged "over the issues that divide us." An engaged reading, on the
      other
      > hand, is one that "attempts to engage seriously and directly with the
      > fundamental content of the Beloved Disciple's gift as well as with [one's]
      .
      > . . own inability, or if you like, unwillingness, to accept it." An
      > engaged reading entails, in Reinhartz's words, "fac[ing] the challenge of
      > opening up [our] own understanding[s] of the world to include . . . [them]
      > without at the same time abdicating [our] right to judge the ethos, and
      the
      > ethical criteria, that . . . [they] support."
      > Adele Reinhartz's metaphor of "befriending the Beloved Disciple"
      > complicates biblical hermeneutics in an ethically responsible manner and
      > pushes beyond the traditional norms of reading approved by historical
      > critical methods.
      >
      > SUBSCRIBE: e-mail johannine_literature-subscribe@yahoogroups.com
      > UNSUBSCRIBE: e-mail johannine_literature-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
      > PROBLEMS?: e-mail johannine_literature-owner@yahoogroups.com
      >
      > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
      >
      >
    • Staley, Jeffrey
      Jeff: I too have much appreciated Adele s book, especially taking into account that she comes to John s Gospel from a Jewish standpoint. Yet does not every
      Message 2 of 4 , Sep 19, 2002
        Jeff:

        I too have much appreciated Adele's book, especially taking into account
        that she comes to John's Gospel from a Jewish standpoint.

        Yet does not every reader, even the most devoutly Christian among us,
        assume
        at one time or another (whether we admit it or not) the mantle of each
        of
        these four "readerships": the compliant the resistant, the sympathetic,
        and
        the engaged (and maybe more)?

        Jeff responds--yes and verily verily, probably more than four. WHich begs
        the question, why only these four? What other ones might there be?
      • Billy Evans
        Message 3 of 4 , Sep 20, 2002
          on 9/19/02 11:29 AM, Ramsey Michaels at profram@... wrote:

          > Jeff:
          >
          > I too have much appreciated Adele's book, especially taking into account
          > that she comes to John's Gospel from a Jewish standpoint.
          >
          > Yet does not every reader, even the most devoutly Christian among us, assume
          > at one time or another (whether we admit it or not) the mantle of each of
          > these four "readerships": the compliant the resistant, the sympathetic, and
          > the engaged (and maybe more)?
          >
          > Is Adele really telling us anything we did not already know in our hearts to
          > be true?
          >
          > Ramsey Michaels
          >
          >
          > ----- Original Message -----
          > From: "Staley, Jeffrey" <staleyj@...>
          > To: <johannine_literature@yahoogroups.com>
          > Sent: Thursday, September 19, 2002 10:59 AM
          > Subject: [John_Lit] RE: "Befriending the Beloved Disciple" or what are YOU
          > reading this fall?
          >
          >
          >> Folks, I hope you have seen the review of Adele Reinhartz's new book
          >> "Befriending the Beloved Disciple" at:
          >> http://www.bookreviews.org/pdf/1631_2761.pdf
          >>
          >> It is also "on the table" to be discussed at the SBL in November. I used
          > it
          >> in class this past spring (undergrad class on FG), and students generally
          >> found the book very provocative. "You mean there is more than ONE way to
          >> read a text?" or "How can you study a book you don't believe in?"
          >>
          >> In an attempt to spark some conversation, I offer the following
          > observations
          >> on her book from a part of an essay on apocalyptic I have written (soon be
          >> published). I have cut out all the comparisons to apocalyptic, to stay
          > with
          >> parts where I summarize Reinhartz's arguments for those of you who haven't
          >> read her book.
          >>
          >> Jeff Staley
          >>
          >> In her recent book on the Fourth Gospel entitled Befriending the Beloved
          >> Disciple: A Jewish Reading of the Gospel of John, Adele Reinhartz proposes
          > a
          >> thought-provoking, fourfold model for reading beyond that book's
          > determinate
          >> binarisms. Taking a cue from Wayne Booth's The Company We Keep: An Ethics
          > of
          >> Fiction, Reinhartz focuses on the ethical implications of what she terms
          >> "compliant reading," "resistant reading," "sympathetic reading," and
          >> "engaged reading" as she explores the Johannine metaphor of the Beloved
          >> Disciple in four roles: the reader's mentor, opponent, colleague, and
          >> "other." With each type of reading she asks two interrelated questions: 1)
          >> What kind of "friend" is the Beloved Disciple to the different types of
          >> readings-i.e. does the "implied author" "encourage" compliant, resistant,
          >> sympathetic, or engaged readings of "his" text? and 2) What kind of reader
          >> do we become when we read the text in these various modes? Reinhartz's
          >> choice of metaphor opens up the reader's imagination to multiple active
          >> reading strategies and challenges the normal understanding of what counts
          > as
          >> a "faithful," "friendly" reading of the Bible-where the faithful reader is
          >> the one who "submits" to the determinate, ideological perspective of the
          >> text without a critical engagement of its ethos or its literary
          >> indeterminacies.
          >> Reinhartz defines a "compliant reading" as one where readers accept
          >> the implied author's "gift in the terms in which he offers it. . . . They
          >> comply with the directions that the implied author describes."
          >> Reinhartz's resistant reading is the mirror image of a compliant
          >> reading. She argues that it "entails the effort systematically to read
          > from
          >> the point of view of the Other as defined by the text or genre under
          >> discussion." From Reinhartz's perspective, the problem with resistant
          >> readings is that they "cannot overcome or bypass the rhetoric of binary
          >> opposition [in FG]but rather reproduce them in reverse."
          >> The final pairing of readings are the most interesting and
          >> challenging for contemporary Christians. Reinhartz defines a sympathetic
          >> reading as one in which the implied author is a "colleague, . . . a peer
          > who
          >> struggles with similar issues in similar ways [as I do]," but without
          > being
          >> engaged "over the issues that divide us." An engaged reading, on the
          > other
          >> hand, is one that "attempts to engage seriously and directly with the
          >> fundamental content of the Beloved Disciple's gift as well as with [one's]
          > .
          >> . . own inability, or if you like, unwillingness, to accept it." An
          >> engaged reading entails, in Reinhartz's words, "fac[ing] the challenge of
          >> opening up [our] own understanding[s] of the world to include . . . [them]
          >> without at the same time abdicating [our] right to judge the ethos, and
          > the
          >> ethical criteria, that . . . [they] support."
          >> Adele Reinhartz's metaphor of "befriending the Beloved Disciple"
          >> complicates biblical hermeneutics in an ethically responsible manner and
          >> pushes beyond the traditional norms of reading approved by historical
          >> critical methods.
          >>
          >> SUBSCRIBE: e-mail johannine_literature-subscribe@yahoogroups.com
          >> UNSUBSCRIBE: e-mail johannine_literature-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
          >> PROBLEMS?: e-mail johannine_literature-owner@yahoogroups.com
          >>
          >> Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
          >>
          >>
          >
          >
          > SUBSCRIBE: e-mail johannine_literature-subscribe@yahoogroups.com
          > UNSUBSCRIBE: e-mail johannine_literature-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
          > PROBLEMS?: e-mail johannine_literature-owner@yahoogroups.com
          >
          > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
          >
          >
        • Billy Evans
          ... Ramsey I agree 100%. My wife showed this book to the middle school teachers where she teaches and her peers were amazed that NT scholars saw any merit it
          Message 4 of 4 , Sep 20, 2002
            on 9/19/02 11:29 AM, Ramsey Michaels at profram@... wrote:

            > I too have much appreciated Adele's book, especially taking into account
            > that she comes to John's Gospel from a Jewish standpoint.
            >
            > Yet does not every reader, even the most devoutly Christian among us, assume
            > at one time or another (whether we admit it or not) the mantle of each of
            > these four "readerships": the compliant the resistant, the sympathetic, and
            > the engaged (and maybe more)?
            >
            > Is Adele really telling us anything we did not already know in our hearts to
            > be true?
            >
            > Ramsey Michaels
            Ramsey

            I agree 100%.

            My wife showed this book to the middle school teachers where she teaches and
            her peers were amazed that NT scholars saw any merit it Adele's book at all.
            They had studies the issue at a deeper level and did not see any merit it it
            either. And, yes they do know how to read. Adele's book is just an obvious
            observation ...much like the TV show, Jerry Sinfeld....Observations that the
            audience already understands to some degree is the essential component to
            writing a comedy.

            Billy
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