Origins of Narrative: The Romantic Appropriation of the Bible

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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.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"As far reaching and well told as this account of the origins of narrative is, the author aims at a yet higher accomplishment. In his preface Stephen Prickett proposes to offer 'one step, at least,' toward correcting the division between theology and the other humanities. If this book be but a step, it is a giant's step." Sewanee Review

"Origins of Narrative is a subtle and complex work, written with great clarity and elegance." Alan P.R. Gregory, Anglican Theological Review

"His book is full of ingenious thinking..." John Pfordresher, Theological Studies

" is certain that scholars and students of literature would do well to appropriate Prickett's version of the origins of narrative." David E. Latane, Jr., South Atlantic Review

One can't help but admire the ambitious reach, the energetic enthusiasm, and the adventuresome curiosity that Prickett brings to his enterprise,which seems to have been conducted in detachment from most of the theoretical arguments that have preoccupied Romantic Studies in the past two decades. The vision and methods and breadth of Prickett's approach are impressively original. They have produced a book that illuminates in a variety of new and useful ways the historical interconnections between Biblical hermeneutics and the literary practices and theories that modern European culture has derived from it, a history that still profoundly affects the way we read and write and think about literature. (Robert M Ryan in EUROPEAN ROMANTIC REVIEW)

"This is a work of remarkable erudition and subtlety, valuable in its contribution to our understanding of the individual figures and linkages it treats as well as in the way it provokes the reader to further investigation and reflection." Charles M. Wood, Modern Theology

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521445436
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 4/28/2005
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 308
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.83 (d)

Table of Contents

Part I. Jacob's Blessing: 1. The stolen birthright; 2. The presence of the past; Part II. The Romantic Bible: 3. The Bible as novel; 4. The Bible and history: appropriating the Revolution; 5. The Bible as metatype: Jacob's ladder; 6. Hermeneutic and narrative: the story of self-consciousness; Epilogue; Bibliography; Index.

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