In this book David Lyle Jeffrey seeks to characterize illustratively the historical commitment of Christianity to the literacy and literature of Western culture.
Against postmodernist tendencies to deride the historical commitment to meaning in Western art and literature as a regressive "logocentrism," Jeffrey argues that the biblical tradition—the cultural and literary identity forged among Western Christians by virtue of being a "People of the Book"—has in fact given rise to Western literacy.
Jeffrey looks at the Christian "grand narrative" as it is reflected in Western literature, making apt use of the visual arts by incorporating a series of twenty-eight black-and-white illustrations that enrich and fortify the story it tells.
Table of Contents
- Logocentrism and Scriptural Tradition
- Scripture upon Scripture
- Secular Scripture: The "Beautiful Captive"
- Evangelization and Literacy
- The Book Without and the Book Within
- Authorial Intent and the Willful Reader
- Symbolism of the Reader
- Authentic Narrative
- The Bible and the American Myth
- Theory and the Broken-Hearted Reader