Strange Bedfellows?

David Brog, Josephus, and the Rhetoric of Contested Allegiances

In: Method & Theory in the Study of Religion
Sheldon Steen Florida State University

Search for other papers by Sheldon Steen in
Current site
Google Scholar
View More View Less
Download Citation Get Permissions

Access options

Get access to the full article by using one of the access options below.

Institutional Login

Log in with Open Athens, Shibboleth, or your institutional credentials

Login via Institution


Buy instant access (PDF download and unlimited online access):


This paper offers a comparative analysis of two people in situations of seemingly contested allegiances: David Brog and Josephus. While the two come from wildly disparate contexts, they nonetheless employ strikingly similar rhetorical strategies as they justify their cooperation with a group to which they would otherwise appear to be categorically opposed. In this paper I examine, compare, and contrast the rhetorical strategies of both, with particular attention to strategies of legitimation (both internal and external), their reconstructions of history, and how each minimizes the importance of apocalypticism. While there is certainly more that distinguishes the two than unites them, this comparative analysis will hopefully give insight into how people navigate complex identities, particularly when those identities, at least from an outsider’s perspective, would appear to be in conflict.

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 285 15 5
Full Text Views 194 3 1
PDF Views & Downloads 35 7 3