"Is this Not the Carpenter?": The Question of the Historicity of the Figure of Jesus

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Thomas L. Thompson, Thomas S. Verenna
Equinox, 2012 - Religion - 280 pages
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The historicity of Jesus is now widely accepted and hardly questioned by most scholars. But this assumption disarms biblical texts of much of their power by privileging an historical interpretation which effectively sweeps aside much theological speculation and allusion. Furthermore, the assumption of historicity gathers further assumptions to it, shaping the interpretation of texts, both denying and adding subtext. Scholars are now faced with an endless array of works on the historical Jesus and few question what has been lost through this wide-spread assumption of historicity. Is This Not the Carpenter? presents a very valuable corrective: a literary rereading of the New Testament.

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About the author (2012)

Thomas L. Thompson is Professor emeritus at the University of Copenhagen and author of many works including The Messiah Myth: The Near Eastern Roots of Jesus and David, Historicity of the Patriarchal Narratives: The Quest for the Historical Abraham, Bible in History: How Writers Create the Past and Early History of the Israelite People: From the Written & Archaeological Sources. Thomas S. Verenna is an independent researcher and student at Rutgers University, whose book Of Men and Muses: Essays on History, Literature and Religion was published by Lulu Press in 2009. His most recent related paper on the subject is 'Did Jesus Exist? The Trouble with Certainty in Historical Jesus Scholarship', published in the online journal Bible and Interpretation in May 2012.

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