Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Implications of Redaction Criticism

"Redaction critics are rarely conscious of the consequences of their conclusions for the historical-critical evolutionary theory. . . . Nevertheless, the evolutionary theory has collapsed because redaction criticism has pulled the plug on its source of power. Whereas the theory saw the power of literary formation in a romantic symbiosis of tradition and environment, redaction criticism has relocated this power in authors on the one hand and in genres on the other, with genres now construed as cultural media of communication."
--Norman R. Petersen, Literary Criticism for New Testament Critics (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1978), 18.


Martin said...

Ok, I read it at least 4 times and each time I thought I understood it until I came to the last "." and said, "Huh"?.
I can ape that redaction fails because it relocates the power (of scripture?) in the author and medium but I don't grasp why this is a darning satement (sorry, my scruples won't let me type the real word) :-)

Anonymous said...

I too am confused and I am in the field :) Maybe the quote needs more context into what the author means by "evolutionary theory" and in what way the plug has been pulled.