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A classroom standard for two decades, The New Testament World: Insights from Cultural Anthropology has introduced students to both the New Testament and the social-scientific study of the New Testament. This revised and expanded third edition offers new chapters on envy and the Jesus movement, updates chapters from earlier editions, augments the bibliography, and offers student study questions.
Bruce Malina provides the foundation for in-depth biblical interpretation using the tools of cultural analysis. As one of the pioneers in this field of biblical studies, Malina has taken the work of sociologist Mary Douglas, interpreted her "Group/Grid" model of cultural analysis, and applied it admirably to biblical studies and interpretation. He refines a new methodology of scholarly biblical interpretation. Since cultures differ, proper interpretation of one culture by another requires a method to compare and contrast the cultures. He has designed such methods and models using the principles of the Douglas method of sociological study. Malina's charts, models, and illustrations serve as study tools for other biblical scholars. His careful thorough work will enable these scholars to incorporate these new models for study into their own methods of biblical interpretation.
This latest addition to the Fortress Social-Science Commentaries on New Testament writings illuminates the values, perceptions, and social codes of the Mediterranean culture that shaped Paul and his interactions - both harmonious and conflicted - with others, Malina and Pilch add new dimensions to our understanding of the apostle as a social change agent, his coworkers as innovators, and his gospel as an assertion of the honor of the God of Israel.
In order to interpret historical writings, the reader must not employ their modern understanding of the world, but must strive to grasp the mindset of the original audience. To assist the twentieth-century New Testament reader in understanding the literal meaning of the New Testament is the goal of this collection of essays. The Social World of Jesus and the Gospels provides the reader with a set of possible scenarios for reading the New Testament: How did first-century persons think about themselves and others? Did they think Jesus was a charismatic leader? Why did they call God 'father'? Were they concerned with their gender roles? The eight essays in this collection were previously published in books and journals generally not available to many readers. Carefully selected and edited, this collection will be both an introduction and an invaluable source of reference to Bruce Malina's thought.
Scholars are agreed that the central metaphor in Jesus' proclamation was the kingdom of God. But what did that phrase mean in the first-century Palestinian world of Jesus? Since it is a political metaphor, what did Jesus envision as the political import of his message? Since this is tied to the political economy, how was that structured in Jesus' day? How is the violence of Jesus' Mediterranean world addressed in the kingdom? And how does "self-denial" fit into Jesus' agenda? Malina tackles these questions in a very accessible way, providing a social-scientific analysis, meaning that he brings to bear explicit models and a comparative approach toward an exciting interpretation of what Jesus was up to, and how his first-century audience would have heard him.
Values are culturally specific. This handbook explains select biblical social values in their Mediterranean cultural contexts. Some examples of values are altruism, freedom, family-centeredness, obedience, parenting, and power. Though the English words for the values described here would be familiar to readers (e.g., altruism) the meanings of such words differ between cultures. In the Mediterranean world, for instance, altruism is a duty incumbent upon anyone who has surplus. It is interpersonal and group specific. In the West, especially in the United States, altruism is impersonal and universally oriented generosity that operates in a highly organized context. This handbook not only presents the Mediterranean meanings of these value words but also contrasts those meanings with Western ones.
"Malina has written an exceptionally clear, accessible and student-friendly introduction to the cultural world of Jesus and his disciples. The windows or scenarios of typical cultural scenes cover the basic range of values and behaviors characteristic of the different cultural world of the Bible".--Jerome H. Neyrey, author of 2 Peter, Jude.

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