Canons in Conflict: Negotiating Texts in True and False by James E. Brenneman

By James E. Brenneman

During this new examine, James Brenneman confronts the problem of conflicting canons with complete strength, incorporating insights received from either literary and biblical disciplines at the query of canon. He starts with an illuminating travel via modern literary idea from Hans Robert Jauss to Stanley Fish, and present discussions in theology concerning the canon. He is going directly to a attention of actual and fake prophesy, with a close exam of the 3 it sounds as if conflicting models of the outdated testomony "swords into plowshares" prophesy, as present in Isaiah 2:2-4,5; Joel 4:9-12 (Eng. 3:9-12); and Micah 4:1-5. Suggesting that the dynamics controlling the method for negotiating among contradictory readings of prophetic texts are just like these at paintings in adjudicating among canons in clash, Brenneman concludes by way of pointing the best way in the direction of an integrative strategy applicable to the query of canon and authority in a "post-modern" pluralistic context.

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Every reader is himself or herself a composite "text" of sorts, full of already interpreted earlier texts. In literary circles and here, Roland Barthes's influence is noteworthy. 52 This is not the place for a history of general hermeneutics, or even of biblical hermeneutics in particular. What may be helpful is a brief encounter with the makers of the modern mind on the problem of hermeneutics in understanding the intertexuality of reader and text. Schleiermacher, Dilthey, and later Heidegger, Gadamer, and Ricoeur represent the philosophical context for the problem of hermeneutics.

Stated canonically, meaning is derived from the whole of the parts in their intertextuality. If Derrida radicalizes Saussurc's notions of the intertextual differences at the level of syntax, he extends this challenge to Saussure's systemic view of language. In doing so, he offers critical nuance to the discussion of intertextuality and context to which we now turn. Intertextuality and (Con)text A third level of intertextuality focuses on synchronic readings of texts in their literary contexts. A synchronic reading concentrates on the interplay between two or more texts or traditions now in juxtaposition by nature of their being in the same work.

Structuralism, semiotics, and formalism all develop Saussure's systemic approach. Another quite influential tradition emerged that placed extreme importance on the second part of Saussure's observation: "In a linguistic system, there are only differences" (emphasis added). Jacques Derrida, the French philosopher, radicalized Saussure5s claims by describing the interplay of language, knowledge, and reality in such a way as to earn the now-formalized description deconstruction. Saussure himself had irrefutably shown that a word like tree means "tree" only by being different from she or be or thee (in sound) or free or three (in letter combinations).

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