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A folklore view on the NT text

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  • Wieland Willker
    I played around a bit with the new Google Scholar and it brought to light the following interesting piece: INVENTING THE TEXT: A CRITIQUE OF FOLKLORE EDITING
    Message 1 of 2 , Nov 19, 2004
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      I played around a bit with the new "Google Scholar" and it brought to
      light the following interesting piece:

      INVENTING THE TEXT: A CRITIQUE OF FOLKLORE
      EDITING David E. Gay
      Folklore Vol. 14 (2000)
      http://haldjas.folklore.ee/folklore/vol14/pdf/editing.pdf

      Several pages of the article deal with the NT text and present a
      "Parkerian view" of the "original text". He concludes:
      "Through their effort to reconstruct the original New Testament, then,
      the work of New Testament scholars leads us away from an understanding
      of the New Testament as a book that had its origins in oral tradition
      and that has existed in literally thousands of manuscripts and oral
      variants in Greek and in other languages since the early Christian
      period - and from an understanding of the culture and people who
      produced it."


      PS: I think nobody would have found this article using traditional
      tools?
      Try here: http://scholar.google.com/
      (Note that Google was allowed to search all(?) scholarly journals, but
      you have access only to those for which your institution has a
      subscription!)

      Best wishes
      Wieland
      <><
      ------------------------------------------------
      Wieland Willker, Bremen, Germany
      mailto:willker@...-bremen.de
      http://www.uni-bremen.de/~wie
      Textcritical commentary:
      http://www.uni-bremen.de/~wie/TCG/index.html
    • Dave Washburn
      ... When are people going to get over this? More recent research - like the last 30 years or so, perhaps even longer - has shown that the whole oral
      Message 2 of 2 , Nov 19, 2004
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        On Friday 19 November 2004 06:20, Wieland Willker wrote:
        > I played around a bit with the new "Google Scholar" and it brought to
        > light the following interesting piece:
        >
        > INVENTING THE TEXT: A CRITIQUE OF FOLKLORE
        > EDITING David E. Gay
        > Folklore Vol. 14 (2000)
        > http://haldjas.folklore.ee/folklore/vol14/pdf/editing.pdf
        >
        > Several pages of the article deal with the NT text and present a
        > "Parkerian view" of the "original text". He concludes:
        > "Through their effort to reconstruct the original New  Testament, then,
        > the work of New Testament scholars leads us away from an understanding
        > of the New Testament as a book that had its origins in oral tradition
        > and that has existed in literally thousands of manuscripts and oral
        > variants in Greek and in other languages since the early Christian
        > period - and from an understanding of the culture and people who
        > produced it."

        When are people going to get over this? More recent research - like the last
        30 years or so, perhaps even longer - has shown that the whole "oral
        tradition" thing was probably very short, if there was one at all, and hence
        it's unlikely that it had any real influence on the text. In addition, this
        idea only works - insofar as it works at all, which is questionable - for the
        gospels. The Paulines alone reduce it to absurdity, since with most of them
        we know the rough dates of writing, provenances, recipients, and all the
        rest. So for the epistles "oral tradition" doesn't even come into play. And
        in the case of the gospels, it's clear that somebody, somewhere, at a
        specific time, produced a "first edition." This quote makes it sound as
        though several hundred well-meaning idiots cranked out compilations of their
        "oral tradition" that just happened to coalesce into the synoptics. I don't
        know of any reputable New Testament scholar who still holds such an idea.

        > PS: I think nobody would have found this article using traditional
        > tools?
        > Try here: http://scholar.google.com/
        > (Note that Google was allowed to search all(?) scholarly journals, but
        > you have access only to those for which your institution has a
        > subscription!)

        And I suppose that pretty well cuts out those of us who aren't
        institutionalized :-)

        --
        Dave Washburn
        http://www.nyx.net/~dwashbur
        "No good. Hit on head." -Gronk
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