Chapter

Text and Identity

Judith Lieu

in Christian Identity in the Jewish and Graeco-Roman World

Published in print May 2004 | ISBN: 9780199262892
Published online July 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780191602818 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199262896.003.0002
Text and Identity

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The literary productivity of early Christianity invites the model of textual communities. This productivity includes the appropriation of the Jewish Scriptures and other writings and the claim to their correct interpretation, as well as the creation of a range of new writings reflecting both continuities and discontinuities with contemporary conventions. The selection of particular texts as authoritative is part of a process of self-definition, which excludes other claimants. Approached independently of such processes allows the diversity of texts to challenge rigid categories of Christianity versus Judaism or of orthodoxy versus heresy.

Keywords: Canon; Christian communities; Christian literature; Crypto-Christian texts; exegesis; Jewish Scriptures; literacy; New Testament; Pseudepigraphy; textual communities

Chapter.  13635 words. 

Subjects: Early Christianity

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