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Q on Tape

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  • Mike Bossingham
    Right, back to basics. Q is a hypothetical document expounded by one particular solution to the Synoptic problem. It has never been found, its content is
    Message 1 of 2 , Jul 8 11:17 AM
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      Right, back to basics.

      Q is a hypothetical document expounded by one particular solution
      to the Synoptic problem. It has never been found, its content is
      deduced from the other Gospels. It's existence is now increasingly
      being questioned.

      I have no problem with the media on which it appears, that is
      irrelevant. The problem is that the words seem to describe it
      as a concrete and known document. This kind of sickly writing
      promotes Q beyond its value in the eyes of many of the
      listeners and readers minds.

      Regards

      Mike Bossingham
      Maidenhead
      Berks
    • Don Spencer
      On Wednesday, July 08, 1998 11:17 AM, Mike Bossingham ... Right, I don t think many of us have any problems with the provenance of Q. But I wonder whether the
      Message 2 of 2 , Jul 8 3:21 PM
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        On Wednesday, July 08, 1998 11:17 AM, Mike Bossingham
        [SMTP:MikeBossingham@...] wrote:
        > Right, back to basics.
        >
        > Q is a hypothetical document expounded by one particular solution
        > to the Synoptic problem. It has never been found, its content is
        > deduced from the other Gospels. It's existence is now increasingly
        > being questioned.

        Right, I don't think many of us have any problems with the provenance of
        Q. But I wonder whether the implied concern about the tape edition of Q
        betrays an ambivalence on the part of scholars about the role of public
        debate. Q has been, rightly or wrongly, a scholarly preserve for 150
        years. We now hear about Q on TV, radio, occasionally even from the
        pulpit, and now from our Walkman or car audio system. Ownership of *this*
        synoptic solution is no longer isolated to those in academia. Questions
        about whether the great unwashed have the intellectual capacity to handle
        the nuances of the debate seems to me to be the general response among
        scholars.

        >
        > I have no problem with the media on which it appears, that is
        > irrelevant. The problem is that the words seem to describe it
        > as a concrete and known document. This kind of sickly writing
        > promotes Q beyond its value in the eyes of many of the
        > listeners and readers minds.
        >

        I think it useful for us to remember another thing. Q is important not
        *just* because it is a solution to the synoptic problem. It is part of
        other contexts as well, one of which is general scholarly debates about
        the NT involving literary criticism, redaction criticism,
        interdisciplinary methodologies, etc.

        The broadest context is, of course, where scholars and the general public
        converge. The tape edition is a popular publication. But it leaves little
        doubt that Q is a scholarly construct, a hypothetical text whose actual
        words are not hypothetical at all, but part of the apparently familiar
        text of the synoptics. Words familiar in one context, unfamiliar in
        another. Hence the value of the tape edition. We hear them, words,
        phrases out of context, yet mysteriously provocative and insightful (yes,
        I know, this is not a scholarly evaluation, merely personal impression).
        It's part of what Mack calls "defamiliarization". Scholarly
        consternation and public fascination turn out to be pretty much the same
        thing - loss of the familiar and curiosity about the unknown.

        Shalom,

        Don Spencer
        dspencer@...

        "A high proportion of what I say is probably wrong...The only problem is
        that I do not know which bits are wrong."
        N. T. Wright
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