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Rhetorical Criticism: Context, Method, and the Book of Jonah


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Phyllis Trible examines rhetorical criticism as a discipline within biblical studies. In part one of Rhetorical Criticism: Context, Method, and the Book of Jonah, she surveys the historical antecedents of the method from ancient times to the postmodern era: classical rhetoric, literary critical theory, literary study of the Bible, and form criticism. Trible then presents samples of rhetorical analysis as the art of composition and as the art of persuasion.

In part two, formulated guidelines are applied to a detailed study of the book of Jonah. A close reading with respect to structure, syntax, style, and substance elicits a host of meanings embedded in text, enabling the relationship between artistry and theology to emerge with clarity.

In the Logos edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Scripture citations link directly to English translations, and important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

Resource Experts
  • Explains how rhetorical criticism interacts with biblical studies
  • Explores the history of rhetorical criticism
  • Analyzes the book of Jonah with a rhetorical perspective
  • Context
    • Sketching the Background
    • Introducing the Foreground
    • Expanding the Background
  • Method and the Book of Jonah
    • Guidelines for Beginning
    • External Design of Jonah
    • Internal Structure of Scene One (1:1–16)
    • Internal Structure of Scene One (2:1–11)
    • Internal Structure of Scene Two (3:1–10)
    • Internal Structure of Scene Two (4:1–11)
    • Guidelines for Continuing
This book was written on several levels and will engage a range of readers to their benefit. I refrain from comment [on the contents] lest I spoil the surprise—and delight—for the reader. Suffice it to say that the book itself is an example of rhetoric.

Gene M. Tucker, associate professor of Old Testament, Emory University

Phyllis Trible, an internationally known biblical scholar and rhetorical critic, is a professor of biblical studies at Wake Forest University School of Divinity. A past president of the Society of Biblical Literature, she began her collegiate teaching career at Wake Forest University in 1963. After leaving in 1971, she taught at Andover Newton Theological School in Massachusetts until she went to Union Theological Seminary in New York in 1979 as a professor of Old Testament. From 1981 until her appointment to the Wake Forest School of Divinity 1998, she was the Baldwin Professor of Sacred Literature at Union Theological Seminary. Trible has been a visiting professor at several other theological schools, including Vancouver School of Theology in British Columbia, Canada, and Iliff School of Theology in Denver, Colorado. Trible, considered a leader in the text-based exploration of women and gender in scripture, has lectured extensively, including abroad. She is the author of the books God and the Rhetoric of Sexuality, Texts of Terror: Literary-Feminist Readings of Biblical Narrative, and, most recently, Rhetorical Criticism: Context, Method, and the Book of Jonah, published in 1994 by Fortress Press. She also has written numerous articles and book reviews for magazines and scholarly journals and provided expert commentary for Bill Moyers’ public television series, “Genesis: A Living Conversation.”


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Digital list price: $26.99
Save $6.00 (22%)