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Re: [Synoptic-L] Osborne in Rethinking

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  • Ken Olson
    Sorry I wasn t able to respond to John Poirier or Shawn Kelley s comments here. I just can t write fast enough to keep up with the thread. On ... p. 147: It
    Message 1 of 40 , Feb 7, 2003
      Sorry I wasn't able to respond to John Poirier or Shawn Kelley's comments
      here. I just can't write fast enough to keep up with the thread. On
      Monday, January 7, Mark Goodacre wrote:

      >>A couple more questions from _Rethinking_. First, Osborne again on
      p. 147:

      "It is said by Griesbach supporters that it is more likely that Mark
      collated Matthew and Luke than that they had by chance adopted
      different aspects of the redundancy. but Mark has many such
      redundant expressions (213 in all), and it seems a feature of his
      style more than a collation of his sources."

      Should "collated" and "collation" be "conflated" and "conflation"?<<

      I can't quite tell from this what Osborne meant by collated here, so I will
      shamelessly ignore the question asked and use this opportunity to launch a
      new topic (-;

      Collation (comparing different readings of texts) is something ancient
      scribes were trained to do, normally in order to check copies for fidelity
      to their exemplar or, sometimes, two exemplars. It strikes me that a
      process similar to collation is presupposed on each of the major synoptic
      source theories. It might be useful to examine in detail exactly how the
      process imagined on each of these theories resembles or doesn't resemble the
      process of collation used in correcting texts. Composition and correction
      are of course different processes, but I think such a comparison might at
      least give us some insight into what techniques are known to have been
      available to someone with two or more texts to work with.

      >>Second, from the same volume, Scot McKnight, pp. 67-8:

      "Streeter and other Synoptic-porblem scholars think that you can't
      understand a text accurately unless you know its context and its
      tradition history. The narrative critics think that the text *is*
      the context. This, I believe, is a mistake, but it surely makes
      learning scholarship easier: you don't have to read the old books,
      because they mistakenly believed that texts don't have contexts;
      rather they have textual clues, and if you read carefully (which
      means following the latest trend of narrative criticism), you will
      see all you need to see. And if we look hard enough, once again, we
      will find the *Angst*." (emphasis original).

      In the middle of the quotation: "they [viz. Streeter et al]
      mistakenly believed that texts don't have contexts". Should the
      "don't" be "do"? I can't make sense of this caricature without that,
      or am I misunderstanding McKnight?<<

      I think the problem may be in determining the referent of "they" here. I
      take it "they" are the narrative critics who consider the historical context
      under which authors wrote irrelevant for evaluating literary works, as
      opposed to Streeter and the other practitioners who do think such
      considerations are important. The antecedent of this particular "they" is
      not very clear, but I think it can be divined from context.

      >>On the substance of this, though, I'm also puzzled. What evidence is
      there that narrative-critics are uninterested in a text's context,
      tradition history etc.? One of the first names that comes to my mind
      when I think of contemporary narrative critics is Mark Allan Powell
      and he, as much as anyone else, gives the strong impression that
      narrative criticism can function alongside historical-critical work;
      indeed his most recent publications are on the Historical Jesus. I
      think the polemic misplaced, but perhaps I misunderstand.<<

      I think the polemic is misplaced with regard to contemporary narrative
      critics of the gospels like Powell who also use historical-critical methods.
      I think McKnight's argument is probably adapted from critics like Terry
      Eagleton, who argued that the growth of the popularity of the New Criticism
      that set aside questions of an author's historical context in evaluating an
      author's work was economically determined. Eagleton thinks that the huge
      increase in college enrollment due to the G.I. Bill in the U.S. in the 1950'
      s made the New Criticism popular because it limited the demands put on the
      students. Professors could no longer depend on students having done any
      background reading on the author's historical situation or having read any
      other works for the sake of comparison. It was, therefore, practical to
      limit discussion to the text immediately under consideration (Eagleton,
      Literary Theory, 38-46).

      There's a good discussion of the issue in C. Clifton Black, The Disciples
      According to Mark (which is, unfortunately, unavailable to me at the
      moment). Black points out that the original claim of the New Critics was to
      that an author's historical context had no bearing on aesthetic judgments on
      whether his work "succeeded" as literature. What a work of literature
      accomplishes must be determined from the work itself, not from
      considerations of the author's context or what he may or may not have
      intended. This principal, Black argues, was later misinterpreted to mean
      that an author's historical context had no bearing on what the author
      intended to do in his work, which is a non sequitur that confuses aesthetic
      and historical judgments. Evaluating a text as an aesthetic object and
      trying to understand what it's author intended are different processes.

      Best Wishes,



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    • Maluflen@aol.com
      In a message dated 3/11/2003 8:27:12 PM Pacific Standard Time, ... Cela veut dire: vous avez certainement raison! Leonard Maluf In a message dated 3/11/2003
      Message 40 of 40 , Mar 12, 2003
        In a message dated 3/11/2003 8:27:12 PM Pacific Standard Time, jlupia2@... writes:

        Oui, Larry, vous ĂȘtes certainement correct.

        Cela veut dire: vous avez certainement raison!

        Leonard Maluf
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