Sunday, August 16, 2015

Progress: August 16, 2015

Since I started the book, Emory's Pitts Theology Library has moved to a new home. The number of books I had checked out made their move easier, since they had a lot fewer books to move.

The fall semester at Emory University is fast approaching, and I turn to faculty meetings, meetings with entering students/advisees, syllabi, and so forth, but I can report research/writing progress on three fronts.

Yesterday I submitted my chapter for the book on characterization in Luke-Acts that is being edited by Frank Dicken and Julia Snyder: Characters and Characterization in Luke-Acts

My chapter builds upon the foundation of the work on characterization in Luke-Acts that I did over twenty-five years ago that was published in Host, Guest, Enemy, and Friend: Portraits of the Pharisees in Luke and Acts. The chapter demonstrates how the afterlives" of the two brothers in the parable build upon the characterization in the parable itself. My chapter is entitled, “The Characterization of the Two Brothers in the Parable of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32): Their Function and Afterlives.” The volume will be published by Bloomsbury in (I think) 2016.

Today I submitted my review of Charles W. Hedrick's The Wisdom of Jesus: Between the Sages of Israel and the Apostles of the Church to the Review of Biblical Literature (published by the Society of Biblical Literature). The book includes significant sections on the parables of Jesus, and it builds upon the results of the Jesus Seminar. Since I disagree with the Jesus Seminar's conclusions about Jesus and the "authentic" sayings (but appreciate Hedrick's past and current scholarship), that review was interesting to write.

Now, as the semester permits, I return to the reception history of the parables book (and a couple of other things) to continue to edit the five main chapters and to begin to construct an integrating introduction.  

As I reflect over the last one and a half years of writing the book, the variety of the materials engaging the parables that I have been able to read is amazing. One imperfect measure: I have checked out (and used) over 500 books from four of Emory University's libraries (Pitts Theology, Woodruff, Oxford, and the Media Library) while researching and writing this book (you wouldn't believe what my office at home looks like with all those books!). I am now in the very slow process of returning those books to their proper homes.  

I am extremely grateful for the resources that Emory makes available to students, faculty, and the general public. 

Interior view of the new Pitts Theology Library

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