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Monthly Archives: March 2011

Interesting article on cities in northern Asia minor (1 Pet 1:1)

By chance, I stumbled over this article:
Mark. W. Wilson, ‘Cities of God in northern Asia minor: Using Stark’s social theories to reconstruct Peter’s communities,’ Verbum et Ecclesia 32(1), available here.

The author uses “seven hypotheses from R. Stark’s Cities of God (2007) as a heuristic tool to
investigate the rise of Christianity in the five Roman provinces mentioned in 1 Peter 1:1.
It affirmed that the Christian communities in these provinces were located in an urban,
not rural, setting. Building on the research of Hort and Hemer, seven major cities in these
provinces were proposed to test Stark’s hypotheses with. These cities are Sinope and Amisus
in Pontus, Ancyra in Galatia, Caesarea Mazaca in Cappadocia, Dorylaeum in Asia and Nicea
and Nicomedia in Bithynia. An important factor noted in several of these cities was their
prominence as a commercial seaport and the presence of a Diaspora Jewish community.
Utilising this methodological approach helped to elucidate more fully the audience of 1
Peter’s geographic and historical background.”

Prayer and Vindication in Luke Acts

A new book has recently been published, originating from a Norwegian dissertation a few years ago:

Geir O. Holmås, Prayer and Vindication in Luke Acts: The Theme of Prayer within the Context of the Legitimating and Edifying Objective of the Lukan Narrative (Library of New Testament Studies; T.& T.Clark Ltd, 24 Mar 2011) 329 pages. £70).

It can now be bought at Amazon.co.uk(£66.50), Amazon.com ($112.34) as well as at the Publisher, and other bookstores.
It is a major study of Prayer in Luke-Acts, and deserves wide reading of al studetns of Luke-Acts. The publisher characterizes the study thus: “This is a comprehensive study of the literary function of prayer in “Luke-Acts”, employing narrative critical methodology and focusing on the theme’s relation to Luke’s historiographical aims Holmas asserts that the distribution of strategically-placed prayer notices and prayers throughout “Luke-Acts” serves a twofold purpose. First, it is integral to Luke’s project of authenticating the Jesus-movement as accredited by Israel’s God. Holmas shows that Luke presents a consistent pattern of divine affirmation and redemption attending the tenacious prayers of the faithful ones throughout every major phase of his narrative – in turn demonstrating continuity with the pious Israel of the past. Secondly, most importantly the ‘ultimate’ purpose of Luke’s emphasis on prayer is didactical. In Luke’s gospel Jesus summons his disciples (and implicitly his readers) to confident and persistent prayer before the Eschaton, assuring them of God’s readiness to answer their entreaties. Luke’s historical account as a whole provides narrative reinforcement of this affirmation. Just as God has been consistent in responding to the diligent prayers of his faithful ones in recent history, satisfying and fulfilling Israel’s hopes for redemption in the Jesus movement, he will assuredly secure ultimate vindication at the end of time for those who persist in prayer.”
Geir Otto Holmas is Associate Professor of New Testament at MF Norwegian School of Theology, Oslo, Norway. (His family name is Holmås; on the front of the book it seems to have been changed to Holmas).

Liddell-Scott-Jones (LSJ) on TLG

The Thesaurus Linguae Graecae now announces: “The Thesaurus Linguae Graecae (TLG) is proud to announce the release of a new online version of Liddell-Scott-Jones (LSJ), the premier lexicon for classical Greek. The TLG version represents five years of intensive work to produce a fully edited and searchable version of LSJ with links to the TLG corpus.”

“The TLG embarked into this project in 2006. Recognizing the fact that LSJ is the most central reference work for all scholars and students of ancient Greek, we decided that producing a fully corrected and reliably accessible online version with links to TLG texts was a worthwhile undertaking. The digital LSJ was a natural extension of our larger and ongoing lemmatization project. In the process of improving automatic recognition of all word forms in our texts, we have digitized and extracted information such as headwords, meanings, and grammatical use from a large number of dictionaries. Making LSJ available to the public was another step in this direction.”

See further information about this issue here.

Update:The LSJ is currently unavailable. After its release last week, the TLG site has been bombarded by pirate sites seeking to download its data. In the process they have caused serious technical and security problems. We regret having to suspend access while we are taking steps to address the security of our servers. We apologize for the inconvenience this action has caused to many legitimate users.

Philo in postcolonial perspectives II

After posting the message below, I discovered another possibly relevant study from a postcolonial perspective. In the last issue of Studia Philonica (Vol XXII 2010), p. 247, there is mentioned an unpublished PhD Dissertation:

R.M. Victor, Colonial Education and Class Formation in Early Judaism: A Postcolonial Reading (Diss. Texas Christian University, 2007).

Now it turns out that this study has in fact been published in 2010, but I have not been able to see it yet:

Royse M. Victor, Colonial Education and Class Formation in Early Judaism.
A Postcolonial Reading
(Library of Second Temple Studies 72; T & T Clark International,2010.

According to the publisher presentation, in this study, the author, “Taking the colonial education system as one of the major analytical categories, this study makes an inquiry into how colonialism functioned and continues to function in both the ancient and the modern world. Based on the Books of Maccabees, Ben Sira, Dead Sea Scrolls, Philo, Josephus, and early rabbinic literature, Victor seeks to determine how the institution of the gymnasium was used to educate the elites and enable Greek citizens, Hellenes, and Hellenistic Jews to function politically, ethnically, and economically within the larger Greek empire, and particularly in Judea, by creating a separate class of the “Hellenized Jews” among the Jewish population. It further reveals the continuity of the role of the colonial education system in forming a class structure among the colonized by exploring a similar historical incident in the British colonial era in India, and demonstrates how the British education introduced into colonial India in the early nineteenth century played a similar role in creating a distinct class of the “Brown Englishmen” among the Indians.”

If there are any others out there who knows about any other studies that apply postcolonial perspectives to the ancient diaspora Judaism, I would be very grateful to be notified. Please use the comments field below.