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Author: Timo Kaitaro
The study describes how the significance of language and culture in forming human cognition has been understood from the mid-sixteenth century to the mid-nineteenth century. It discusses authors who realized that the human mind—and brain—is in fact a cultural artefact and that language is not merely a means to communicate thoughts but also to form them in the first place. It presents a novel perspective on the history of philosophy in which the narrative is no longer centered on the question of whether knowledge results from experience or reason, but whether experience and reason are in fact possible without language.
By applying a stylistic analysis within a systemic-functional linguistic framework, this study argues that Luke's construal of the Jerusalem Council in Acts 15 and its co-thematic passages attempt to persuade Jewish believers of Luke's audience not to separate from multi-ethnic churches, a goal that is accomplished through subverting the value orientations of a prominent Noahic tradition within Second Temple Jewish literature that promotes strict Jewish isolation from Gentiles. As a result, this study breaks fresh methodological ground in the linguistic study on the New Testament and also advances critical scholarship on the book of Acts.