Programme with Abstracts
May 31 / Samedi, 31 Mai
Saturday, May 31 / Samedi, 31 Mai
CSBS Executive Meeting / Réunion du Comité Exécutif
Sunday, June 1 / Dimanche, 1 Juin
LES RIVALITÉS RELIGIEUSES
Themes and Methods
Presiding: Harold Remus (Wilfrid Laurier U.)
Peter Richardson (U. of Toronto) “Religious Harmony and Rivalry—from the Ground Up”
This paper, with accompanying slides, assesses instances of religious rivalry in the Syro-Palestinian area, concentrating on three classes of evidence: (I) instances where rivalry seems more muted than literary descriptions might suggest (concurrent building activities in adjacent areas); (2) instances where rivalry is clearly present (take-overs, adaptations, renovations or destruction); (3) instances of obvious borrowing across religious lines (though it is obscure whether this derives from rivalry or harmony). The examples will be taken from Galilee, Jordan, and Syria during the period from about the first to the fifth centuries CE, and will be architectural or archaeological in nature.
Jack Lightstone (Concordia U.) “My Rival, My Fellow: Methodological and Conceptual Prolegomena to Mapping Interreligious Relations in the First Several Centuries of the Christian Era”
This paper attempts to sharpen the work of the seminar by locating the analysis of religious rivalry within a broader conceptual frame. It views religious rivalry as one dimension of intergroup relations, social formation and self-definition within pluri-religious and pluri-ethnic social environments. Using examples culled primarily from early rabbinic documents, the paper argues for a framework in which rivalry and competition operate simultaneously with other social mechanisms that permit requisite levels and arenas of trans-group social solidarity. This framework enables us to identify not only social spheres in which Jews, Christians and adherents of other religions operated as rivals, but also social spheres in which these same social actors interacted as fellow citizens.
Respondent: Leif Vaage (Emmanuel College, U. of Toronto)
READING BIBLICAL TEXTS
LIRE LES TEXTES BIBLIQUES
Presiding: Kim Parker (Memorial U.)
12:00 Robert C. Culley (McGill U.) “On the Variety of Critical Approaches”
As the number of critical approaches to biblical texts increase, it is becoming clearer that these approaches represent rather different notions about what a text is. It may be appropriate now to try to identify what these different concepts of texts are and how are related to each other. I have made an initial, and rather primitive, attempt in this direction in the introduction of Themes and Variations. In this paper, I would like to pick up some aspects of this I problem by considering some recent discussions of a “final form” or “canonical” approach to the book of Psalms.
12:30 Sylvia C. Keesmaat (Institute for Christian Studies) “Paul’s World Creation: Suspicious Rhetoric or Trust-Evoking Speech?”
In the light of recent interpretations which assert that Paul is creating a world for the early Christians which is socially oppressive and heavily controlled, this paper will explore a reading of Paul which focuses on the hermeneutical function of world creation. What sort of reality does Paul create for his readers? Is this a world that exists solely for the purposes of Paul’s immediate rhetorical goals? Or are the rhetorical roots of Paul’s language to be found in the larger context of Paul’s tradition? Either way, is the rhetorical world Paul creates one that should be viewed with suspicion or trust?
13:00 John Sandys-Wunsch (Mill Bay, BC) “The Child and the Savage: the Effect of Metaphors for Other Cultures on Biblical Interpretation”
In the early enlightenment there was a prevailing sense of the cultural gap between modem Europeans and the rest of the world. The metaphor used to describe this gap was the difference between the child and the adult. In the course of the eighteenth century oscillations in the evaluation of other cultures tended to reflect an author’s concept of children either as sweet, naive, naturally good individuals or Bart-Simpson-like ankle biters. The effect of different assumptions 7 can be seen in the biblical interpretation of figures like Lessing and Herder.
13:30 Susan Slater Kuzak (Atlantic School of Theology) “Fifty Ways to Know Your Bible”
There is an increasing awareness in Biblical Studies of the directing role in biblical interpretation played by the researcher’s own consciousness, commitments, and contexts. This has been presented in wide-ranging ways, from a variety of ideological stances, and with a similar wide range of implications drawn from our understanding of the practice and goals of biblical interpretation. This paper will suggest contours for a discussion of some different understandings of the goals and practice of biblical/Bible study. It will ask how these may relate to different epistemological assumptions, both in connection with forms of knowing proper to imaginal expression and, more broadly, with ongoing discussions of the roles of the knower in relation to what becomes known through the practice of interpreting the Bible.
IMPACT OF FEMINIST CRITICAL THEORY ON BIBLICAL STUDIES
L’IMPACT DU FÉMINISME SUR LES SCIENCES RELIGIEUSES
15:00 Patricia Dutcher-Walls (Knox College, U. of Toronto) “Seeing the Forest and the Trees: Social Scientific Directions in Feminist Biblical Studies”
This presentation will review the methods and issues used by sociological and anthropological study of the Bible. Then I will suggest that such study can be helpful for feminist biblical study because a better understanding of the social world of the Bible allows a clearer and more critical understanding of texts, interpretations, and interpreters. A knowledge of the social world enables us to recognize the places and ways women’s presence has been deleted or overlooked in texts, to clear away limited analyses and androcentric interpretations and to rediscover women’s roles in all aspects of biblical analysis.
Application of Method to Specific Texts
15:30 Jacqueline Isaac (U. of Toronto) “Feminist Approaches to Biblical Kinship: Family Relations in the Joseph Story”
A major undercurrent in the patriarchal narratives focuses around the issues of marriage and kinship in ancient Israelite society. Recently, several feminist works which explore these relationships using social-scientific methods have appeared, including the works of Nancy Jay [Throughout Your Generations Forever: Sacrifice, Religion and Paternity], Naomi Steinberg [Kinship and Marriage in Genesis: A Household Perspective] and Ilona Rashkow [The Phallacy of Genesis: A Feminist Psychoanalytic Approach]. In this presentation we will examine the validity of these methods and the value of the results obtained when they are used to explore the marriage and kinship elements of the Joseph story.
16:15 Erin Runions (McGill) “Violence and the Economy of Desire in Ezekiel 16:1-43”
In this presentation, I analyse the imagery of violence toward a woman in Ezekiel 16:1-43, by exploring the relationship between violence and desire in the text. I use René Girard’s theory of mimetic desire and conflict as a standard against which to measure the various operations of violence and desire in Ezekiel 16. There seem to be differences between the way violence and desire function in this text, depending on whether on reads it figuratively or literally. Further, an interplay of violence and desire seems to appear between figurative and literal readings of the text.
JOHN AND HEBREWS
JEAN ET HÉBREUX
Presiding: Wayne McCready (Calgary)
15:00 Tim Scott (St. Joseph’s College, U. of Alberta) “John 13: Footwashing and Christian witness: liturgical praxis as an invitation to martyrdom”
The washing of the disciples’ feet in John’s Gospel is susceptible to a variety of interpretive strategies. Commentators have commented on the supposed link to Christian baptism and the (anti-) sacramental bias at work in the various stages of the redactional history of 13:6-10. In contrast they find verses 13-15 a straightforward case of paraenesis destined for the Johannine community. Rhetorical criticism has rendered problematic this facile distinction in the narrative. The object of this paper will be to explore whether a closer link between the two parts of the foot washing scene in John 13 elucidates more clearly the underlying meaning of each half of the narrative. In particular, vocabulary and themes touched upon in John 13 suggest links to Jesus’ death. Thus the servant invited to wash another’s feet may suggest for the Johannine community a call to Christian mission and martyrdom.
15:30 Mary Rose D’Angelo (Notre Dame) “‘The one who has seen has testified’: Testimony and Prophecy in John”
The words “testimony” and “testify” (marturia, martureo) play a major role in the gospel of John. The verb frequently appears in the perfect and is linked with the verbs “see” and “hear.” Interpreters generally assign occurrences of this language either to the central forensic metaphor of John (e.g. 5:31-39) or to statements that reflect the experience of the community (e.g. 3:11). This essay will point toward a third, perhaps mediating function of the language: in John, 1 John and Revelation, the words testimony/testify refer to visionary and prophetic experience. The testimony of John the Baptist, which is of such major significance to the gospel writer, is a good illustration of this other function of the language. The Baptist’s witness rests upon a vision and an oracular message (1:29-34).
16:00 Alan D. Bulley (Saint Paul) “The Use of the Passive in the Epistle to the Hebrews”
The Epistle to the Hebrews contains a remarkable number of passive constructions in two categories: a) passages containing verbs in the passive voice, and b) figures that are the objects of another’s actions. God is the primary actor in Hebrews. The Son’s role is primarily one of obedient submission to the will of the Father; and he is not spoken of in truly active terms until his “perfection” is complete. The paper surveys occurrences of passive construction in Hebrews and makes connections between the relative roles of God, the Son, and the rhetorical situation of the discourse. Particular attention is given to Christology and the experience of suffering.
MEMORIAL UNIVERSITY PRESIDENTIAL RECEPTION
RECEPTION PRESIDENTIELLE UNIVERSITAIRE
THE CRAIGIE LECTURE / LA CONFÉRENCE CRAIGIE
Wayne Meeks (Yale University) “Judaism, Hellenism and the Birth of Christianity”
The CSBS/CSSR/CTS/CSPS gratefully acknowledge the support of the HSSFC for the Craigie Lecture.
Monday, June 2 / Lundi, 2 Juin
WOMEN SCHOLARS BREAKFAST
POSTCRITICAL THEORY AND BIBLICAL INTERPRETATION
THÉORIE POST-CRITIQUE ET L’INTERPRÉTATION DE LA BIBLE
Presiding: Ann Jervis Mason (Wycliffe College, U. of T.)
9:00 David Jobling (St. Andrew’s College) and Danna Nolan Fewell (Perkins School of Theology) “Pentecost: Acts 2 in the Life of the Bible and Culture Collective”; Gary Phillips (College of the Holy Cross, Worcester MA) “Babel Lives On: Speaking Many Languages, Producing Many Texts”
This is a two-part report on work in process in the Bible and Culture Collective (authors of The Postmodern Bible). The papers, though independent and giving different perspectives, will draw on the Collective’s recent engagement of the Babel and Pentecost accounts (Gen 11:1-19; Acts 2). We ask questions about: the relationship between the passages (in the context of a critique of “canonical criticism”); their reception history (“the search for a perfect language”); their cultural impact (for example, the extensive iconographic tradition); their potential for ideological and feminist critique, etc. In particular, we use these passages to “read” the current state of the “field” of biblical studies, including the imperative for collective scholarship. The first paper focuses on Acts 2, particularly the issues of unity and diversity, communication and community. The second paper focuses on Gen 11 and its positive and negative power as a root metaphor.
10:00 Erin Runions (McGill) “Called to Do Justice: Micah and Identity Politics”
In this paper I will read some current discussion on identity politics alongside texts from Micah. Identity politics are concerned with the way identities are formed and the way they subsequently affect political engagement and action. The dialogic (I-you) manner in which Micah engages and situates the reader within a specific framework of values (in this case, utopian), is similar to the process that some theorists (Charles Taylor, Iris Young) have posited for the formation of identities. This leads me to suggest that texts, and in particular religious texts, can be seen as formative for politically oriented identities and political action. If this is the case, toward what kind of identity does the text of Micah push the reader? What are the oral/ political ethical implications for the reader thus formed?
10:45 Kim Parker (Memorial U.) “Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, must we leave Eden, once and for all?: A Lacanian Pleasure Trip through the Garden”
Recent literature concerning Genesis 2:4b-3:24 indicates that the traditional assumptions that the story is about “sin and the fall” are problematic, and the text might better be viewed in terms of a “maturation” myth. In this paper I want to suggest that the maturation theme as discerned in the Eden narrative has certain affinities with modern psychoanalytical theory, and, in particular with the work of the French postmodernist Jacques Lacan. Lacanian themes such as the development of language, the sense of self, socialization and alienation have their parallels in the Eden narrative.
11:15 Fiona Black (Sheffield) “What to do with the Wasfs? Grotesque Body Imagery in the Song of Songs”
This paper will consider the grotesque as an alternative way of interpreting three concentrated descriptions of the female body in the Song of Songs (Song 4: 1-5; 6:4-7 and 7:1-8). The imagery used in the descriptions is difficult to interpret because it appears to be nonsensical and ridiculous. Biblical scholarship has traditionally negotiated the imagery by viewing it through the generic lens of the was! The was!, however, makes a connection between ridiculous imaging of the female body and compliment which is disturbing from a feminist perspective and which obscures the difficult nature of the language. This paper problematises traditional readings of the Song by considering the descriptions of the female body not as complimentary, but as grotesque. It contemplates the issues of patriarchal control of women through representation and, additionally, it asks what are the implications that grotesque figuration has for feminist readings of this text.
11:45 Peggy Day (Winnipeg) “The Bitch Had It Coming to Her: The Death of a Metaphor in Ezekiel 16”
Modern commentators on Ezekiel 16 typically assert that the gruesome murder of metaphorical Jerusalem, Yahweh’s wife, is inconsistent with the laws governing adultery. This assertion overlooks the fact that it is Jerusalem’s metaphorical lovers who are said to carry out the punishment, a situation wholly consistent with the law that condemns both the adulteress and her lover to death (Deut 22:22). It also overlooks the fact that certain aspects of the punishment, such as the woman’s dismemberment, are nowhere in the legal material evidenced as punishment for adultery. Having refuted the position that the woman Jerusalem was executed in accordance with the laws governing adultery, the paper will consider alternative explanations for Ezekiel 16’s portrayal of the slaying of adulterous Jerusalem.
LES RIVALITÉS RELIGIEUSES
Presiding: Terry Donaldson (Emmanuel and St. Chad)
John Kloppenborg (St. Michael’s College) “The Basis of Religious Rivalries at Caesarea Maritima”
This paper, which developed from my response to Dorothy Sly’s 1996 paper on isopoliteia at Caesarea Maritima. traces demographic, political, and economic factors producing the tensions between Jews and non-Jews that led to the massacre and expulsion of Jews in 66 CE.
Respondent: Willi Braun (Bishop’s U.)
Wendy Cotter (Loyola U. of Chicago) “The Roman Soldier and Incipient Christianity”
This paper discusses whether earliest Christianity could have offered any attraction for the Roman soldier. The paper will have three parts. First, after reviewing the traditional expectations of army pietas, this paper will address the popular trends in army “religious” affiliations in the first century CEo The second part of the paper will present a review of the basic kerygma about the hero Jesus and the most basic expectations of Christian involvements. The third part of the paper will then discuss those expectations of Christian belief and practice which would cohere with the values and virtues treasured within army tradition and religious trends, and those that would stand at variance with them.
Respondent: Michel Desjardins (Wilfred Laurier U.)
Reinhard Pummer (U. of Ottawa) “From Coexistence to Excommunication and Persecution: The Samaritans of Caesarea before the Muslim Conquest”
Although our information about the Samaritans in Caesarea in the 2nd and 3rd centuries is meagre, we can cautiously conclude that during the time the relationship between Samaritans, on the one hand, and “pagans,” Jews and Christians, on the other, was peaceful. There is no evidence of antagonism between them and any of the other groups. Nor are there indications of proselytizing by the Samaritans among members of other religions. Between the 4th and 6th centuries, the situation of the Samaritans changed. Gradually, intolerance towards them increased from both Jewish rabbis and Christian authorities. This led ultimately to the Samaritans being banned by the former and repressed by the latter. The Samaritan revolts in the 5th and 6th centuries were acts of desperation that decimated the community and contributed to the decline of Caesarea as a city.
Respondent: Eileen Schuller (McMaster U.)
CANADIAN CORPORATION FOR THE STUDY OF RELIGION
CORPORATION CANADIENNE DES SCIENCES RELIGIEUSES
Annual Business Meeting
CSBS STUDENT PRIZE ESSAYS
GAGNANTS DU CONCOURS DE LA SCÉB OUVERT AUX ÉTUDIANTS
Presiding: Adele Reinhartz (McMaster U.)
13:15 JEREMIAS PRIZE
Lee Ann Johnson (Knox College, U. of Toronto): “Satan Talk in Corinth: The Language of Conflict”
13:45 FOUNDERS PRIZE
Nancie Erhard (Atlantic School of Theology): “Hosea 2: Descent and Recovery of the Feminine Divine”
IMPACT OF FEMINIST CRITICAL THEORY ON BIBLICAL STUDIES
L’IMPACT DU FÉMINISME SUR LES SCIENCES RELIGIEUSES
14:30 Dorothy Sly (U. of Windsor) “Antoinette Wire: A Method in Her Madness?”
This presentation examines the exegetical method of Antionette Wire, as found in two works: The Corinthian Women Prophets (Fortress, 1990), and “1 Corinthians,” a Commentary in vol. 2 of Searching the Scriptures, ed. E. Schüssler Fiorenza (Crossroad, 1994), pp. 153-195. My title borrows the expression with which Wire, surely anticipating criticism, introduces her method. For purposes of contrast, I intend to situate Wire’s works between two other recent studies on 1 Corinthians: Jouette Bassler’s “1 Corinthians” in The Women’s Bible Commentary, ed. Carol Newsom and Sharon Ringe (Westminster / John Knox, 1992), pp. 321-329, and Dale Martin’s The Corinthian Body (Yale UP, 1995).
15:00 Francis Landy (U. of Alberta) “Throughout Your Generations Forever: Nancy Jay’s Theory of Sacrifice”
Nancy Jay’s Throughout Your Generations Forever is a global theory of sacrifice, as ambitious as those of Girard, Kristeva, or Durkheim, and has been influential in feminist critiques of the Hebrew Bible, especially through the work of Mieke Bal. Jay argues, with an astonishingly wide assortment of evidence, that sacrifice is throughout associated with patrilineal societies or with repressed patrilineal elements in matrilineal ones; its main function is the short-circuiting of biological maternity. In my discussion I hope to outline Jay’s theory in comparison with its competitors, and to focus on its treatment of biblical genealogical and sacrificial systems.
SPECIAL SESSION CELEBRATING 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF DEAD SEA SCROLLS RESEARCH /
SÉANCE SPÉCIALE EN HONNEUR DU 50IEME ANNIVERSAIRE DE LA DECOUVERTE DES MANUSCRITS DE LA MER MORTE
Presiding: Eileen Schuller (McMaster U.)
14:30 Jean Duhaime (U. de Montreal) “Recent Studies on Messianism in the Dead Sea Scrolls”
This paper will compare the aim and methodology of a few recent studies of the Messianic texts from Qumran (Garcia Martinez, VanderKam, Puech, Collins, Schniedewind, Schiffman) in order to better understand their various results. It will be demonstrated that the Messianic texts from Qumran are used with different assumptions and aims by these authors. In conclusion, I will make a few observations on the way I wish to address the topic in the larger context of a sociological study of the Qumran community.
15:00 John Kampen (Payne Theological Seminary) “The Significance of the Qumran Scrolls for Understanding the Social History of the Matthean Community”
The communal legislation within the Gospel of Matthew distinguishes it from other writings in the New Testament. Much of this legislation such as the Sermon on the Mount, 16:18-20 and 18:15-20 has comparable material within the Qumran scrolls. This paper analyzes the Matthean legislation on the basis of this comparable material and discusses its implications for understanding the social history of the Matthean community.
CSBS ANNUAL BUSINESS MEETING / ASSEMBLÉE ANNUELLE DE LA SCÉB
CSBS PRESIDENTIAL ADDRESS
DISCOURS PRESIDENTIEL DE LA SCÉB
Presiding: Adele Reinhartz (McMaster U.)
Wayne McCready (U. of Calgary) “Shields of Bronze Polished like Mirrors—Biblical Studies and the Academy”
18:30 CSBS ANNUAL
BANQUET ANNUEL DE LA SCÉB
Murray’s Pond Country Club
Tuesday, June 3 / Mardi, 3 Juin
MEETING OF 1997-98 EXECUTIVE
RÉUNION DU NOUVEAU EXECUTIF
PROPHETS AND WRITINGS
PROPHÈTES ET ÉCRITS
Presiding: Edith Humphrey (Aylmer, PO)
9:00 Marion Taylor (Wycliffe College, U. of Toronto): “A Re-examination of the ‘Strange Epilogue’ (10:1-3) which Concludes the Hebrew Esther”
In 1944, Charles C. Torrey asked “Is there any reasonable explanation of the strange epilogue (10:1-3) which stands at the end of the Hebrew Esther?” In this paper, I want to push Torrey’s request further and explore the epilogue’s significance for the canonical shaping of the Book of Esther and the effect of that shape on the meaning of the book, especially in the light of recent discussions of the heroine(s)/hero of the book.
9:30 Joyce Rilett Wood (Mount Saint Vincent U.) “The Women in Jeremiah’s Choral Lyrics”
Jeremiah composed a choral ode in which different women come forward and speak in their own right. One woman engages in a dispute with Jeremiah, another grieves the loss of her children, and yet another subordinates Jeremiah’s words to her own. A different perception of prophecy emerges. Prophecy is not just prediction and harangue, nor is it the expectation of a uniform response. Female voices compete with male voices and contribute to the development of a complex prophetic message.
10:00 John L. McLaughlin (Wheeling Jesuit U.) “Jeremiah’s ‘Confessions’ as Unanswered Complaints”
It has long been recognized that the so-called “Confessions of Jeremiah” (Jer 11:18-12:6; 15:10-21; 17:14-18; 18:18-23; 20:7-18) utilize the form of the Complaint of the Individual. In the Psalter, such complaints contain an abrupt shift in mood from petition to thanksgiving, which is explained by theorizing an intervening divine response of assurance. Divine responses are explicit in Jeremiah’s first two complaints, although not always ones of assurance, but absent from the final three. This paper will show that God’s attitude in response to the prophet’s continued complaints progresses from assurance through warning and then rebuke to end in silence, and will consider how this functions in the context of the larger prophetic book.
EARLY JEWISH AND CHRISTIAN TEXTS IN CONTEXT
TEXTES ANCIENS JUIFS ET CHRÉTIENS DANS LEUR CONTEXT
Presiding: Alan D. Bulley (Saint Paul U.)
10:30 Philip A. Harland (Centre for the Study of Religion, U. of Toronto) “Greco-Roman associations and imperial facets of civic life: Shedding light on Jewish and Christian groups in the cities of Roman Asia (I-II CE)”
Recent studies of Roman rule and imperial cults in the province of Asia have begun to emphasize the degree to which the imperial presence permeated the institutional, economic, social-religious and architectural landscape of the cities. Few scholars have investigated the epigraphical evidence for religious associations or guilds in this regard, however. In this paper a discussion of the involvements of these small social-religious groups in imperial facets of civic life will provide a framework within which to discuss and compare the various stances of Jewish and Christian groups in the same region to this aspect of civic society. There was a range of possible relations in 17 this regard from the separationist perspective of Revelation to the relative openness of 1 Peter and the Pastorals, the latter in some ways resembling the relations of other ‘pagan’ associations.
11:00 Maria Mamfredis (Concordia U.) “The Mishnah as Canon in Third, Fourth and Fifth Century Rabbinism”
In this paper I plan a discussion of Mishnah as canon in third, fourth, and fifth century Rabbinism. This is to be accomplished by a brief survey of certain documents claimed by Rabbinism as its own. The unquestioned acceptance of the authority which those responsible for these documents understand the Mishnah to confer upon them to interpret Torah and make laws is easily contrasted to the variety of challenges, implicit and explicit, which these very documents direct at the Mishnah’s own methodology of arriving at laws. When one takes into consideration all the effort exerted by these documents in order to show their disapproval of the methodology used by the Mishnah, one cannot help but wonder why the Mishnah was canonized. It is this paradox which this paper intends to investigate.
11:30 Peter L. Griffiths (London, England) “The New Testament was probably written by Queen Berenice”
The names Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are the titles not the authors of the four Gospels. The annunciation and nativity section of Matthew’s Gospel strongly suggests a female author. There are only four women mentioned in the NT whose existence can be confirmed from non-Biblical sources, and these women are all closely related to each other. One of these women is Berenice, whose first husband Marcus was a nephew of Philo Judaeus, the leading authority of his day on the history and religion of the Jewish people. She witnessed and protested crucifixions in AD 65, and her third husband was Polemon, identifiable as the Philemon who received the shortest of St Paul’s epistles. Being anxious to improve relations between the Jews and the Romans, she created a new religion for the Jews. The replacement of the Jewish Passover feast with the Christian Easter was an important element in this policy.
JOINT SESSION WITH CSPS: TEXTS AND INTERPRETATION
SÉANCE CONJOINTE AVEC L’ACÉP: TEXTES ET INTERPRÉTATION
1. Presiding: Paul-Hubert Poirier (U. Laval), 9:00-10:15
Gerald Sheppard (Emmanuel College, U. of Toronto) “Envisioned Texts and Allusive (Intertextual) Practices: Continuity over Time”
Harry Maier (Vancouver School of Theology) “Staging the Gaze: Apocalyptic Narrative: Self-Representation in Early Christianity”
2. Presiding: Peter Widdicombe (McMaster U.), 10:30-12:00
Sylvia Keesmaat (Institute for Christian Studies) “Good Fruit in Colossians 1.6 & 10”
John Egan (Regis College, U. of Toronto) “Intertextuality in Gregory Nazianzen’s Oriations 30.7: John 14.28 and John 10.30 or Philippians 2.6”
THE MATTER OF ‘SITZ IM LEBEN’
LA QUESTION DU ‘SITZ IM LEBEN’
Presiding: Jack Lightstone (Concordia U.)
13:00 Steve Westerholm (McMaster U.) “Pragmatism and the Gospel Tradition”
In gospel research, it is commonly assumed that the gospel tradition included only material deemed useful for addressing perceived community needs. Several features of the tradition suggest that this assumption misrepresents the mindset of the early Christians: the preservation without context of logia whose point depends on the context they are given; the collection of various logia into units on the mechanical basis of a “catchword” found in each without consideration of the point of the logia so collected; and the continued preservation of material so corrupted in transmission that its point is no longer apparent. Each of these features suggests a rather unpragmatic mindset bent on the preservation of material perceived to have intrinsic value.
13:30 Edith Humphrey (Aylmer, P.Q.) “On Bees and Best Guesses—the Problem of Sitz im Leben from Internal Evidence, as illustrated by Joseph and Aseneth”
How did a nice girl like Aseneth get herself embroiled in Byzantine allegories, Therapeutic mysteries, non-sectarian Judaism and an alternate Temple cult in Heliopolis? The tracing of the career of this Hellenistic Jewish novel, its wildly divergent interpretations, and its myriad suggested Sitze im Leben, is instructive. How do we develop criteria and methods that are both sane and fruitful in the elusive work of determining setting when mostly internal evidence must be used? How important is an understanding of setting to a sensitive reading of a work? On what bases do we make such decisions? Stay tuned to see if the “bees” will tell all.
READING PETER AND PAUL
LIRE PIERRE ET PAUL
Presiding: Willi Braun (Bishop’s U.)
13:00 Philip Tite (Wilfred Laurier U.) “The Rhetorical Strategy of 1 Peter 3:12-4:1”
In the third major section of 1 Peter’s letter-body (following T. Martin’s compositional theory), the author shifts into a discourse on righteous sufferers (3:13). By considering the transitional motion from 3:12 to 3:13, the usage of a rhetorical question (in anticipation of the recipients’ response to suffering) and the function of exemplars in the opening sub-section of this righteous sufferers section, this paper will attempt to explicate the rhetorical strategy being utilized by the Petrine author. What we find is a stasis of redefinition, in which glory through suffering is presented as a consolatory focus for the Petrine paraenesis.
13:30 Catherine Innes-Parker (Memorial U.) “Mi bodi henge wio pi bodi neiled o rode: The Gendering of the Pauline Concept of Crucifixion with Christ in Medieval Devotional Prose for Women”
This paper will explore the implications of gendering Biblical texts through an examination of the use of the Pauline concept of crucifixion with Christ in the group of thirteenth-century texts known as the Katherine group. Written for an audience of female religious recluses, or anchoresses, these texts tie the image of being crucified with Christ to the spousal metaphor of the soul as the bride of Christ, figuring the anchoress’s re-enactment of the incarnation and the crucifixion in profoundly feminine terms. The results are ambiguous: female flesh is transformed and empowered, yet this empowerment is tied to images of suffering and penance. This equivocal outcome has significant ramifications for feminist scholarship, as we explore the implications of gendered language in the analysis and translation of Biblical texts.
Main Page / Page d’accueil