Memory, Orality, and the Fourth Gospel

A Response to Paul Foster with Further Comments for Future Discussion

In: Journal for the Study of the Historical Jesus
Stanley E. Porter
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Hughson T. Ong McMaster Divinity College, Canada,;

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This article examines and responds to the arguments made by Paul Foster in a recent article in jshj regarding social-memory theory, orality, and the Fourth Gospel, where he argues that recent research in these areas are dead-ends for historical Jesus research. We do not necessarily wish to defend the research he criticizes, but we respond to Foster by pointing out some of the limitations in his analysis and provide further comments to move discussion of these research areas forward. Our comments address his assumption that form- and redaction-criticism accomplish the purposes that he envisions for historical Jesus research and a number of other problematic arguments he raises regarding each of these areas.

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