During the later eighteenth century the Bible underwent a shift in interpretation so radical as to make it virtually a different book from what it had been a hundred years earlier. Even as historical criticism suggested that the Bible's text was neither stable nor original, the new notion of the Bible as a cultural artifact became a paradigm of all literature. Not merely was English, German and French Romanticism steeped in Biblical references of a new kind, but theories of literature and criticism came to be Biblically derived.
This Companion explores the Bible's role and influence onindividual writers, whilst tracing the key developments of Biblicalthemes and literary theory through the ages. An ambitious overview of the Bible's impact on Englishliterature – as arguably the most powerful work of literaturein history – from the medieval period through to thetwentieth-century Includes introductory sections to each period giving backgroundinformation about the Bible as a source text in English literature,and placing writers in their historical context Draws on examples from medieval, early-modern,eighteenth-century and Romantic, Victorian, and Modernistliterature Includes many 'secular' or 'anti-clerical' writers alongsidetheir 'Christian' contemporaries, revealing how the Bible's textshifts and changes in the writing of each author who reads andstudies it
Features:• Wide chronological coverage of English literature, especially texts found in the Norton, Oxford, Blackwell and other standard anthologies• Short, punchy essays that engage with the texts, the critics, and literary and social issues• Background and survey articles• Glossaries of Bible themes, images and narratives• Annotated bibliography and questions for class discussion or personal reflection• Scholarly yet accessible, jargon-free approach – ideal for school and university students, book groups and general readersCreated for readers who may be unfamiliar with the Bible, church history or theological development, it offers an understanding of Christianity’s key concepts, themes, images and characters as they relate to English literature up to the present day.
This comprehensive, accessible guidebook traces the ways in which human beings have used narrative to make sense of time, space and identity over the centuries. Particular attention is given to: * early narrative, from Hellenic and Hebraic * the rise of the novel * realist representation * imperialism and narrative * modernism and cinema * postmodern narrative * narrative and new technologies. With a strong emphasis on clarity and a range of examples from oral cultures to cyberspace, this is the ideal guide to an essential critical topic.
Varying degrees of attention are paid to Jesus' four speeches in the Galilean ministry of the Gospel of Luke. Despite increasing interest in ancient Graeco-Roman rhetoric in biblical studies, few scholars examine the speeches from the lens of ancient rhetorical argument. In addition, with the exception of the inaugural speech in Luke 4.14-30, little attention is afforded to the relevance of the speeches for understanding larger nuances of the narrative discourse and how this affects the hermeneutical appropriation of authorial readers. In contrast, Spencer examines each speech from the context of ancient rhetorical argument and pinpoints various narrative trajectories-as associated with theme, plot, characterization, and topoi-that emerge from the rhetorical texture. In doing so, he shows that the four speeches function as "sign posts" that are integral to guiding the Lukan narrative from the "backwaters" of Galilee to the center of the Roman Empire.