Archive for the ‘canon’ Category
The working title of my thesis is something like ‘A Canonical Approach to the Song of Songs’. So far, my research has mainly been focused on the canonical approach, rather than the Song of Songs. Here’s the summary statement of what I think the canonical approach is trying to do:
The canonical approach seeks to discover what the text of the canon (in its final form) now means within the literary and theological framework of the whole canon, when used in its canonical function by the people of the canonical community.
That is to say, when texts are read in the context of the whole bible and when they are used for their stated purposes (revealing God, building the church, equipping us for righteousness etc.) and when they are read by the church, what do they mean? So it means we won’t be reading texts as isolated fragments, we will be looking to the rest of the bible to illuminate their literary and theological qualities. We won’t necessarily be concerned with recovering the original author’s intended meaning (or at least, we won’t be restricting meaning in this way). We won’t be using them to do things like reconstructing a history of Israel. And we won’t be attempting to read them from a position of academic ‘neutrality’.
Well, that’s what I think I’m doing. I’m meeting my supervisor later, so we’ll see what he thinks then.