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The Discipleship Paradigm

Readers and Anonymous Characters in the Fourth Gospel


David Beck

This volume examines the Fourth Gospel narrative in terms of its character portrayal, especially the portrayal of anonymous characters. It focuses on how characterization impacts readers, eliciting their involvement in the narrative, particularly the recognition of and response to Jesus' identity, and how anonymity facilitates that participation.
The first chapters examine the understanding of characterization in contemporary literary theory, then the author explores other contemporaneous narratives for the function of anonymous characters in those narratives. The final chapters examine specific character portrayals in the Fourth Gospel, demonstrating how the narratives of anonymous characters draw the reader into participation in the narrative and enables identification with those characters, especially the disciple Jesus loved, the Johannine paradigm of discipleship.

David Beck Ryden


Manumission touched comparatively few slaves, but it proved to be an essential institution for the growth of Jamaica’s free population-of-color. Heretofore, there have been no systematic studies of manumission records for the eighteenth century. This paper analyzes manumission deeds filed as official records in the island’s Secretary’s office during the 1770s. These documents are scrutinized in light of Edward Long’s 1774 discussion on the free population and the manumission process. Despite white anxiety over the growth of the free-population-of-color, the data show that a wide cross-section of Jamaica’s free-population liberated enslaved people for a variety of reasons, including cash payments that reflected market imperatives. While most enslaved people could never hope to find freedom in this fashion, the constancy of manumission had an enormous bearing on the makeup of the free population.

The Leningrad Codex

A Facsimile Edition

Edited by Astrid B. Beck, David Noel Freedman and James A. Sanders

The oldest complete Hebrew Bible in the world is the Leningrad Codex. Housed in the Saltykov-Shchedrin State Public Library in St. Petersburg, Russia, and dating to 1009 C.E., the Leningrad Codex stands as the single most important extant manuscript for establishing the text of the Hebrew Bible and is the basis for virtually all critical editions of the Hebrew Bible.
In a landmark publishing event in biblical scholarship, the Leningrad Codex is now available for the first time in a facsimile edition. This beautiful scholar's edition of the Leningrad Codex, produced under the auspices of the University of Michigan in cooperation and consultation with the Ancient Biblical Manuscript Center and West Semitic Research Project, features a high quality 25,4 x 30,5 cm. hardcover format that includes sixteen full-color illuminated carpet pages that capture in precise detail the Codex's lovely medieval artwork.

Edited by David Beck, Mily Crevels, Hein van der Voort and Roberto Zavala

This peer-reviewed book series offers an international forum for high-quality scholarly studies on the indigenous languages of South, Central and North America, including the Arctic. Around 1,000 genealogically and typologically very diverse languages are spoken in this immense region. Due to ecological and cultural pressure this treasure trove of languages is often highly endangered with extinction, hence the urgency of its preservation and study. The publications in this series will concern both descriptive and analytical work on American indigenous languages, and include handbooks, language surveys, grammatical descriptions and theoretical, historical, areal and typological monographs or particularly well-organized edited volumes with a central theme. Even though the scope of the series is international, authors are encouraged to write in English to reach as large as possible a readership.

The series published an average of two volumes per year over the last 5 years.