Lecture 1 04/02/2014
Most documents written in the Mediterranean culture, where there were different values e.g. honor/ shame/
patronage/ slavery – documents of and with history (1 and 2 century C.E.)
Documents intended to address certain issues earlier Jesus followers had
Composed on the basis of information the author received—oral or written documents—prehistory of
documents and how they travelled from point of composition to being included in the Bible
What kind of literature?
What is the perspective?
Biography or history?—e.g. Acts is history – genre is important
What are the differences?—dependent on genre, editorial tendency, characteristics
What is the function
Historical placement, date, authorship
Way to connect something they say to knowable history
Names sometimes added/ common names hard to trace
Location—how they talk about geography e.g. Mark not written in Palestine ▯ not from Israel
Social register (for whom are the documents written for), social world (debt forgiveness, confrontation in
public space where men argue w/ men)
E.g. “family”—Mediterranean families had many children (high mortality rate) + servants
High bar for who qualifies as a friend in the Mediterranean
Who is speaking?
The Mediterranean is not our world
Nonbureaucratized culture and patronage – relationships not anonymous but personal and enduring for life
What cultural codes are needed to interpret texts?
Stephen Biko (19461977) South African activist advocating