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Bruce J. Malina 1933-2017

Bruce.cmalinaThe sad news reached me today that Prof. Bruce J. Malina died yesterday, Aug. 17, at dawn, US time. Malina was professor emeritus at Creighton University, Omaha, USA.

Prof. Malina will probably be remembered by most as one of those who introduced Social Anthropology, or Cultural Anthropology as he called it, into New Testament studies. His books on The New Testament World: Insights from Cultural Anthropology (John Knox Press, 1981 and later), his Christian Origins and Cultural Anthropology. Practical Models for Biblical Interpretation (John Knox Press, 1986), and his (together with Jerome H. Neyrey), Portraits of Paul. An Archaeology of Ancient Personality (Westminster John Knox Press, 1996), are great works that made Social Scientific ways of thinking (along cultural anthropology lines) both relevant and common in New Testament studies. Think about it, who, if any, knew and applied the models of Honor and Shame, Dyadic Personality, Limited Good etc in New Testament studies before they read Malina? When at the peak of his strength-and popularity- he published a flow of articles and books on New Testament Issues. He got a lot of followers, and a group focusing on these issues, the Context Group , was formed in 1986, and is still active (see also here). In 2001 he was honored by a Festschrift: John J. Pilch, ed., Social Scientific Models for Interpreting the Bible.  Biblical Interpretation Series, SBL, Atlanta, 2001, and a bibliography 1967-1999 of his works is available here.

As for my own part, I met prof Malina in 1987, when being a Fulbright professor at the University of Oslo, he visited the University of Trondheim to present some of his work there, and to discuss my own work as a research fellow there. There and then he introduced me to the world of Mediterranean Social anthropology, and in particular to the model of ‘establisment violence/vigilantism’ which I later applied in my PhD dissertation. I remember him as very kind, helpful and genuinely interested in my work, but also as very self-conscious about his work.

In his later years he cherished some unconventional ideas about present day Israelis, Israel and the Palestinian problem. To some extent this might also have influenced some views in his scholarly works.

But I cherish the memories of a Bruce Malina as a scholar who did New Testament studies a great service in introducing issues from Mediterranean social anthropology. The study of the social world of the New Testament, and even of the Bible as a whole, received insights through his works that we all now take for granted.

RIP

 

 

Great news from SNTS Meeting 2017

The annual Meeting 2017 of the SNTS (Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas) is now over. It was held in Pretoria, South Africa during the days of Aug 8–11. Alas, I was not able to attend the meeting, but here is nevertheless some info as received from the webpages related to the Society, and from one of those who had the opportunity to attend.

    1. There were no main paper devoted to Philo of Alexandria, but at least one seminar paper dealt with him: In the seminar focusing on The Development of Early Christian Ethics within its Jewish and Greco-Roman Contexts , one paper focused on ‘Aristotle’s Three-fold Submission in the Household codes of Paul, Peter, Philo and Josephus’. It was presented by David Instone-Brewer, and the respondent was Christine Gerber.
    2. There has not been any seminar – in recent years- dealing with Philo of Alexandria, but from 2018 – next year- there will be a change in this.  The Society has accepted the establishment of a Seminar dealing with “Philo and Early Christianity”, working for five years, starting in 2018. The Seminar will be led by the professors Greg Sterling, Yale Divinity School, USA, and Per Jarle Bekken, Nord University, Bodø, Norway.

IMG_3144This is great news, and we can now look forward to Philo sessions at SNTS Meetings for the coming five years. The meeting of 2018 will be in Athens, Greece, then 2019 in Marburg, Germany, and then in Rome, Italy, in 2020.

Philo and the Psalms

Via the blog of Jim Davila I was made aware of a new book on the reception of the Old Testament Psalms:

Christiane Bøhm,

Die Rezeption der Psalmen in den Qumranschriften, bei Philo von Alexandrien und im Corpus Paulinum
[The Reception of the Psalms in the Qumran Cave Scrolls, Philo of Alexandria’s Writings, and the Pauline Corpus.] 2017. XII, 284 pages. Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament 2. Reihe 437. 84,00 €, sewn paper, ISBN 978-3-16-154664-8.

In this study, Christiane Böhm examines the interpretation of the Psalms in the trio of 11QPsa, Philo’s allegorical commentary and the Pauline letters, each of which constitutes paradigmatic text corpora representing the various strands of ancient Judaism, and provides a specific understanding of the Psalms.
The interpretation of the Psalms in Qumran, Philo and Paul reflect an inner-Jewish discourse on their capacity to disclose reality and their identity-imparting function in the interpretive horizon of group-specific belief systems. The three examined text corpora reveal a different view of the Psalms. It also becomes apparent how the sense potential inherent in the psalter is fully exhausted.

Christiane Böhm Geboren 1983; Studium der Ev. Theologie in Kiel, Uppsala und Heidelberg; 2010–11 Wissenschaftliche Angestellte am Lehrstuhl für Systematische Theologie und Sozialethik an der CAU Kiel; 2016 Promotion; seit 2014 Vikarin in der Evangelisch-Lutherischen Kirche in Norddeutschland.

See more here: https://www.mohr.de/en/book/die-rezeption-der-psalmen-in-den-qumranschriften-bei-philo-von-alexandrien-und-im-corpus-paulinum-9783161546648

Another interesting book coming…..

Brian J. Wright, Communal Reading in the Time of Jesus: A Window into Early Christian Reading Practices Hardcover – December 1, 2017. Fortress Press.
Publisher’s description:

Much of the contemporary discussion of the Jesus tradition has focused on aspects of oral performance, storytelling, and social memory, on the premise that the practice of communal reading of written texts was a phenomenon documented no earlier than the second century CE. Brian J. Wright overturns that premise by examining evidence that demonstrates communal reading events in the first century. Wright disproves the simplistic notion that only a small segment of society in certain urban areas could have been involved in such communal reading events during the first century; rather, communal reading permeated a complex, multifaceted cultural field in which early Christians, Philo, and many others participated. His study thus pushes the academic conversation back by at least a century and raises important new questions regarding the formation of the Jesus tradition, the contours of book culture in early Christianity, and factors shaping the transmission of the text of the New Testament. These fresh insights have the potential to inform historical reconstructions of the nature of the earliest churches as well as the story of canon formation and textual transmission.

Review of Runia Festschrift

Gregory E. Sterling (ed.), Studies in Philo in Honor of David Runia. Studia Philonica Annual: Studies in Hellenistic Judaism, volume XXVII (2016). Atlanta: SBL Press, 2016. Pp. x, 465. ISBN 9780884141815. $61.95.Reviewed by Ilaria Ramelli, Catholic University; Angelicum; Princeton (iramelli@princeton.edu)

See review at http://bmcr.brynmawr.edu/2017/2017-07-16.html

Philo and Paideia

A Google alert made me aware of this interesting volume on pedagogy in ancient Judaism and early Christianity. I find it interesting for several reasons; first, because ‘paideia’ was an important issue in the ancient world; second because it was also important to Philo of Alexandria, and third; it was also important to the early Christians. This volume contains studies related to all these fields or issues:

Hogan, Karina Martin, Matthew Goff, and Emma Wasserman, eds. 2017. Pedagogy in Ancient Judaism and Early Christianity. Early Judaism and Its Literature. Atlanta: SBL Press

In addition to the usual Introduction chapter, introducing the various chapters, the volume contains 14 interesting studies. As of special interest to Philo scholars, if one should single out some, I would point to these three:

Ballard, C. Andrew,  “The Mysteries of Paideia: ‘Mystery’ and Education in Plato’s Symposium, 4QInstruction, and 1 Corinthians.” pp. 243–82.

Martin Hogan, Karina,  “Would Philo Have Recognized Qumran Musar as Paideia?”  pp. 81–100.

Zurawski, Jason M., “Mosaic Torah as Encyclical Paideia: Reading Paul’s Allegory of Hagar and Sarah in Light of Philo of Alexandria’s,” pp. 283–308.

In the first mentioned study (I am here drawing on the introductory presentation of the editor Karina Martin Hogan, pp. 1-12), the one by Ballard, explores the pedagogical functions of mystery language, a feature well known to readers of Philo. He argues that “the authors of these compositions (dealt with here) describe their teachings with mystery terminology to distinguish their pedagogical techniques from other forms of education- to legitimate the authority of the instructor, to lead the student on a path to acquire esoteric knowledge, and to encourage the student to experience some sort of transformative vision” (p. 8).

Karina Martin Hogan argues that ‘Philo would have recognized the ‘musar’ practiced by the Dead Sea sect as a kind of paideia, in part because both Philo and the authors of the wisdom texts from Qumran were shaped by the study of Proverbs and the torah” (p. 5)

Then, in his study of Paul’s and Philo’s allegorical use of the story of Hagar and Sarah, Zurawski concludes that “Just as Philo allows that preliminary paideia lays the groundwork for the pursuit of wisdom, Paul believes that the torah prepared the Jewish people for salvation, but that it must be set aside now that salvation is freely given through Christ to Jews and gentiles alike” (p. 9).

Those of you interested in the rest of the studies presented in this volume can read more HERE.

 

Borgeniana; a supplementary bibliography

Two bibliographies of the published works of Prof.em. Peder J. Borgen have  been previously given in the two Festschriften he has received; the present bibliography is provided as a supplement to these.

The two Festschriften presented to Peder Borgen are these:

Böckman, Peter Wilhelm, and Roald E. Kristiansen. Context. Essays in Honor of Peder Borgen, eds. Trondheim: Tapir Press, 1987, pp. 225-233.

Aune, David E., Torrey Seland, and Jarl Henning Ulrichsen, eds. Neotestamentica et Philonica. Studies in Honor of Peder Borgen. Supplements to Novum Testamentum 106. Leiden & Boston: Brill, 2003, pp. 415-426.

The following is an additional, but provisional bibliography because a more fully bibliography is still to come because some items are missing in the previous ones, and as some of Borgen’s works are still forthcoming. It also does not include interviews, newspaper articles etc. 

Updates:
Updated June 5. 2017
Updated June 8. 2017

2002

Borgen, Peder. 2002. “Avtalen ‘Nådens felleskap’ mellom Metodistkirken og Den norske kirke.” Tidsskrift for Teologi og Kirke 73: 185–98.

2003

Borgen, Peder. 2003. “The Gospel of John and Philo of Alexandria.” In Light in a Spotless Mirror. Reflections on Wisdom Traditions in Judaism and Early Christianity, edited by James H. Charlesworth, 77–91. London: Continuum.

Borgen, Peder. 2003. “Philo of Alexandria as Exegete.” In A History of Biblical Interpretation Vol 1: The Ancient Period, edited by Alan J. Hauser and Duane F. Watson, 114–43. Grand Rapids, Mi: Eerdmans Publishing Company.

2004

Borgen, Peder. 2004. “The Contrite Wrongdoer –  Condemned or Set Free by the Spirit? Romans 7:7–8:4.” In The Holy Spirit and Christian Origins. Essays in Honor of James D. G. Dunn, edited by Graham N Stanton, Bruce W. Longenecker, and Stephen C. Barton, 181–92. Grand Rapids, Mi: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing.

Borgen, Peder, 2004. “Ute-økumenikk og hjemme-økumenikk. Hendelser og erfaringer,” In K.O. Sandnes, H. Hegstad, G.Heiene, og S. Thorbjørnsen (eds.), Etikk, tro og pluralisme. FS Lars Østnor, 269-280. Bergen.

Borgen, Peder, ‚Avhandlingen Das Volk Gottes.‘ NTT 105 (2004) 12-20.

2005

Borgen, Peder, 2005. “Der Methodismus und die Anfänge der Pfingstbewegung in Norwegen: eine auf Thomas Ball Barratt konzentrierte Studie mit einem kurzen Hinweis auf Erik Andersen Nordquelle,“ in P.Ph. Streiff (Hg.), Der europäische Methodismus um die Wende vom 19. und 20. Jahrhundert. EmK Geschichte – Monografien, Band 52, Medienwerk der Evangelisch-methodistischen Kirche. 237-257. Freiburg.

2006

Borgen, Peder. 2006. “Some Crime-and-Punishment Reports.” In Ancient Israel, Judaism, and Christianity in Contemporary Perspective.  Essays in Memory of Karl-Johan Illman, edited by Jacob Neusner, Alan J. Avery-Peck, Antti Laato, Risto Nurmela, and Karl-Gustav Sandelin. Studies in Judaism, 67–80. Lanham: University Press of America.

Borgen, Peder. 2006. “Crucified for His Own Sins – Crucified for Our Sins: Observations on a Pauline Perspective.” In The New Testament and Early Christian Literature in Greco-Roman Context, edited by John Fotopoulos. Supplements to Novum Testamentum 122, 17–35. Leiden.

2007

Borgen, Peder. 2007. “The Scriptures and the Words and Works of Jesus.” In What We Have Heard from the Beginning. The Past, Present, and Future of Johaninne Studies. In What We Have Heard from the Beginning. The Past, Present, and Future of Johannine Studies, edited by Tom Thatcher, 39–58. Waco, Texas: Baylor University Press.

2009

Borgen, Peder. 2009. Vei utenfor Allfarvei (Way Outside of the High-Road). Studier i skjæringspunktet mellom kirkehistorie, personalhistorie og samfunnshistorie. Transactions of The Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences and Letters, 2009, 1, Trondheim. A collection of articles.

‘Vei utenfor allfarvei -oversikt-hovedtemaer,’ pp. 7-20.

‘Johannes Olsonius (1607-1684) Theosophus et medicus Bergensis,’ pp.  21-48.

First published in Norwegian as: “Johannes Olsonius. Theosophus et Medicus Bergensis”, Norsk teologisk tidsskrift, 73 (1972) 1-26.

‘Georg Wolff (1736-1828). Religion, handel og politikk i dansk-norsk og engelsk miljø i London,’ pp. 49-86.

First published in English as: “George Wolff (1736-1828): Norwegian-born Merchant, Consul, Benevolent Methodist Layman, Close Friend of John Wesley,” Methodist History, 40 (2001) 17-28

‘Ole Peter Pettersen fra Glemmen (1822-1901). Vei utenfor Allfarvei. Studier i skjæringspunktet mellom kirkehistorie, personalhistorie og samfunnshistorie. Skrifter 2009, nr. 1. Det kongelige Norske Videnskabers Selskab; Tapir Akademisk Forlag, Trondheim, 2009, 87-128.

‘Methodism and the Initial Stages of the Pentecostal Movement in Norway,’ pp. 129-151.

First published in German as  “Der Methodismus und die Anfänge der Pfingstbewegung in Norwegen: eine auf Thomas Ball Barratt konzentrierte Studie mit einem kurzen Hinweis auf Erik Andersen Nordquelle,“ in P.Ph. Streiff (Hg.), Der europäische Methodismus um die Wende vom 19. und 20. Jahrhundert. EmK Geschichte – Monografien, Band 52, Medienwerk der Evangelisch-methodistischen Kirche. Freiburg, 2005, 237-257

‘Nils Alstrup Dahl (1911-2001), Das Volk Gottes,‘ i Vei utenfor Allfarvei. Studier i skjæringspunktet mellom kirkehistorie, personalhistorie og samfunnshistorie. Skrifter 2009, nr. 1. Det kongelige Norske Videnskabers Selskab; Tapir Akademisk Forlag, Trondheim, 2009, 153-168.

Originally published as  ‚Avhandlingen Das Volk Gottes.‘ NTT 105 (2004) 12-20.

‘Ute-økumenikk og hjemme-økumenikk,’ pp. 169-187.

Originally published in Norwegian as: *”Ute-økumenikk og hjemme-økumenikk. Hendelser og erfaringer,” In K.O. Sandnes, H. Hegstad, G.Heiene, og S. Thorbjørnsen (eds.), Etikk, tro og pluralisme. FS Lars Østnor, Bergen, 2004, 269-280

2013

Borgen, Peder, ‘On the Migration of Moses,’ in L. H. Feldman et al., Outside the Bible. Philadelphia; The Jewish Publication Society, 2013 I:951-58.

2014

Borgen, Peder. 2014. The Gospel of John: More Light from Philo, Paul and Archaeology. The Scriptures, Tradition, Exposition, Settings, Meaning. Supplements to Novum Testamentum 154. Leiden-Boston: Brill.

  •  “The Scriptures and the Words and Works of Jesus. With a Response by M. Labahn.” pp. 3–27. (Originally published 2010)
  • “Debates on Expository Method and Form”, pp. 29-39. (Orig. 1983).
  • “The Gospel of John and Philo of Alexandria,” pp. 43-66. (Orig. 2003).
  • “Gospel traditions in Paul and John: Methods and Structures. John and the Synoptics,” pp. 67-77. (Orig. 1990).
  • “The Gospel of John and Hellenism,” pp. 79-99. (Orig. 1996).
  • “John and the Synoptics in the Passion Narrative,” pp. 103-119. (Orig. 1959).
  • “John and the Synoptics,” pp. 121-146. (Orig. 1990).
  • “The independence of the Gospel of John: Some Observations,” pp. 147-164.
  • “God’s agent in the Fourth Gospel,” pp. 167-178. (Orig. 1968).
  • “The Sabbath Controversy in John 5:1-18 and the Analogous Controversy Reflected in Philo’s Writings,” pp. 179-191. (Orig. 1991).
  • “Observations on God’s agent and agency in John’s gospel Chapters 5-10: Agency and the Quest for the Historical Jesus,” pp. 193-218.
  • “‘John the Witness’ and the Prologue: John 1:1-34(37),” pp. 219-238.
  • “Can Philo’s In Flaccum and Legatio ad Gaium be of Help?,” pp. 241-260.
  • “The Appearance to Thomas: Not a blasphemous claim, but the Truth,” pp. 261-274.
  • “Summary: John, Archaeology, Philo, Paul, Other Jewish sources. Johns independence of the Synoptics. Where my journey of research has led,” pp. 275-294.

Borgen, Peder. 2014. “Philo – An Interpreter of the Laws of Moses,” in  Reading Philo. Handbook to Philo of Alexandria, edited by Torrey Seland. 75-101. Grand Rapids, Mi., Eerdmans.

2016

Borgen, Peder. 2016. “Alternative Aims and Choices in Education: Analysis of Selected Texts.” In The Studia Philonica Annual XXVIII 2016, edited by David T. Runia and Gregory E. Sterling. Studies in Hellenistic Judaism, 257–71. Atlanta, Ga: SBL Press.

Updated June 5. 2017