Not the Righteous but Sinners: Bakhtin's Theory of Aesthetics and the Problem of Reader-Character Interaction in Matthew's Gospel
Not the Righteous but Sinners: Bakhtin's Theory of Aesthetics and the Problem of Reader-Character Interaction in Matthew's Gospel

Not the Righteous but Sinners: Bakhtin's Theory of Aesthetics and the Problem of Reader-Character Interaction in Matthew's Gospel

in The Library of New Testament Studies

by John Barnet

Pages 160
Publisher T&T Clark
Published 2004
ISBN-13 9780826466556
When critics study reader-character interaction in Matthew's Gospel, they tend to reach similar conclusions. The disciples are viewed as the link between Jesus and the readers. The supplicants and Pharisees serve as foils complementing the true meaning of discipleship.This study reconceptualizes the readers' role on the basis of M.M. Bakhtin's analysis of the author-hero relationship. The outcome of this reading strategy is that the readers must also interact with Jesus through the limited perspective of the major character groups, momentarily suspending the post-resurrection knowledge that all authority is g ranted to him.

By encouraging the readers to identify with the Pharisees, the Gospel is able to constitute the readers as sinners, thereby establishing them in the supplicants' condition of need, and thus as the potential recipients of good news.

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