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Parables of War : Reading John's Jewish Apocalypse - John W. Marshall

Parables of War

Reading John's Jewish Apocalypse

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What makes the Book of Revelation so hard to understand?

How does the Book of Revelation fit into Judaism and the beginning


John W. Marshall proposes a radical reinterpretation of the Book
of Revelation of John, viewing it as a document of the Jewish
diaspora during the Judean War. He contends that categorizing the
Book as "Christian" has been an impediment in interpreting the
Apocalypse. By suspending that category, solutions to several
persistent problems in contemporary exegesis of the Apocalypse are
facilitated. The author thus undertakes a rereading of the Book of
Revelation that does not merely enumerate elements of a Jewish
"background" but understands the Book of Revelation as an integral
whole and a thoroughly Jewish text.

Marshall carefully scrutinizes the problems that plague
contemporary interpretations of the Book of Revelation, and how
the category of "Christian" relates to such problems. He employs
the works of Mieke Bal, Roland Barthes, Jacques Derrida, Jean
Fran?ois Lyotard, and Jonathan Z. Smith as theoretical resources.
In the second half of his study, he provides detailed descriptions
of the social and cultural context of the diaspora during the
Judean War, and constructive rereadings of four key text

The result is a portrait of the Apocalypse of John that envisions
the document as deeply invested in the Judaism of its time,
pursuing rhetorical objectives that are not defined by the issues
that scholars use to differentiate Judaism from Christianity.

A lively reinterpretation of John's Apocalypse.... [But] Marshall's fair, consistent interpretative paradigm is not the only aspect of the book that is particularly rigorous and sustained.... Marshall ... couches his critique of the dominance of the usual readings of the Apocalypse in the sophisticated terminology of the giant literary critics (especially Barthes, Culler, Jameson, and Derrida) and there is a levity to this treatment that belies the usual density.''--Laurence Broadhurst "Studies in Religion, 34, 3-4, 2005 "

Acknowledgementsp. vii
Introductionp. 1
Aporias: Passages Without Passagep. 10
Meanings: Names and Pathsp. 25
Terms: The Supplement and/or the Complementp. 37
Taxonomy: The Sine Qua Non of Christianity?p. 45
Narratives: John('s) Becomes a Christian (Document)p. 55
Names: Choosing.Categoriesp. 68
Date: That Long Yearp. 88
Location: Diaspora in Warp. 98
Parables I: Standing Fast Among the Nationsp. 122
Parables II: Defending the Holy Cityp. 149
Results: Judaism in Asia and Devotion to Jesusp. 174
Epiloguep. 207
Bibliographyp. 208
Subject Indexp. 240
Ancient Sources Indexp. 245
Modern Authors Indexp. 255
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780889203747
ISBN-10: 0889203741
Audience: Professional
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 265
Published: 19th November 2001
Country of Publication: CA
Dimensions (cm): 22.8 x 15.2  x 1.91
Weight (kg): 0.26