By Phyllis Trible

Introduces a manner of studying and examining biblical literature

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Rhetorical Criticism: Context, Method, and the Book of Jonah

Introduces a fashion of examining and analyzing biblical literature

Extra info for Rhetorical Criticism: Context, Method, and the Book of Jonah

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A n d o f course m a n y d id “ fall o f f” . B u t th e aston­ ish in g th in g is th at the religion is n o t destroyed. I n its best representatives it grows p u rer, stronger, an d m ore p rofoun d . I t is bein g, b y this terrible discipline, directed m ore an d m ore to its real centre. T h a t w ill be the subject o f the n ext chapter. ” So far— I couldn’ t help it— this book has been w hat the old w om an in S cott described as “ a cau ld clatter o’ m o ra lity ” . A t last w e can turn to b etter things.

It is the b o d y, even the dead body w hich is the m an him self; the ghost is on ly a sort o f reflection or echo. (T h e grim im pulse sometimes has crossed m y m ind to w on d er w hether all this w as, is, in fact true ; that the m erely n atural fate o f hum an ity, the fate o f unredeem ed h um an ity, is ju st this— to disintegrate in soul as in b o d y, to be a witless psychic sedim ent. ) S u ch a conception, vague an d m arginal even in Paganism , becomes m ore so in Judaism . Sheol is even dim m er, further in the background, than H ades.

B u t ca n w e, besides learning from these terrible Psalm s also use them in our devotional life? I be­ lieve we ca n ; b u t th at topic must be reserved for a later chapter. 33 iv D eath in th e Psalm s A ccordin g to m y policy o f taking first w hat is most unattractive, I should now proceed to the selfrighteousness in m an y o f the Psalms. But we can­ n ot deal w ith that properly until some other matters h a ve been noticed. I turn first to a very different subject. O u r ancestors seem to have read the Psalms and the rest o f the O ld Testam ent under the impression th at the authors wrote w ith a pretty full under­ standing o f Christian T h eology ; the m ain difference being that the Incarnation, w hich for us is some­ th in g recorded, w as for them som ething predicted.

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