Viktor Frankl and the Book of Job

Viktor Frankl and the Book of Job


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This book accomplishes two distinct tasks. First, it develops the psychological theory of Dr. Viktor E. Frankl as a literary hermeneutic. Second, it applies the hermeneutic by reading the book of Job.

Key issues emerge through three movements. The first movement addresses Frankl's concept of the feeling of meaninglessness and his rejection of reductionism and nihilism. The second movement addresses the dual nature of meaning; an association is revealed between Frankl's understanding of meaning and the Joban understanding of wisdom. The third movement involves an exploration of Frankl's ideas of ultimate meaning and self-transcendence.

As a Holocaust survivor, Frankl had a personal stake in the effectiveness of his approach. He lived the suffering about which he wrote. Because of this, reading the book of Job with a hermeneutic based on Frankl's ideas will present readers with opportunities to discover unique meanings and serve to clarify their attitudes toward pain, guilt, and death. As meaning is discovered through participation with the text, we will see that Job's final response can become a site for transcending suffering.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781532659133
Publisher: Wipf & Stock Publishers
Publication date: 05/02/2019
Pages: 150
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.32(d)

About the Author

Marshall H. Lewis is a psychotherapist and logotherapist who has practiced for over thirty years. He is a frequent speaker on Viktor Frankl’s theory and serves on the faculty of the Viktor Frankl Institute of Logotherapy. His graduate training in psychology and doctoral training in Bible, culture, and hermeneutics led him to write this book.

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From the Publisher

Applying Victor Frankl's logotherapy to the book of Job, Marshall Lewis sees Job as one forced to make sense of what appears to be an absurd situation. A fresh reading of both Frankl and Job, Lewis, following Frankl, argues that while any experience can be made meaningful, in the end we are sometimes better off accepting a world in which suffering has no meaning, at least at present. A bold and ambitious reading that respects the text of Job as much as it does the texts of Frankl, the book uses Frankl to construct a new hermeneutic of reading.”

—C. Fred Alford, Professor Emeritus, University of Maryland, College Park, and author of After the Holocaust: The Book of Job, Primo Levi, and the Path to Affliction

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