Chapter

Critical Curiosity

Carol A. Newsom

in The Book of Job

Published in print June 2009 | ISBN: 9780195396287
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199852420 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195396287.003.0003
Critical Curiosity

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This chapter focuses on the genre, “the wisdom dialogue”, examples of which are the Babylonian Theodicy and the book of Job. The most distinctive generic markers that serve to sort this group of texts from others that bear more distant comparisons include (1) the form of a freestanding dialogue in which a single question is examined by two or more speakers representing two contrasting perspectives; (2) the topic considered, which is that of the problem of inexplicable suffering or, more broadly, the meaningfulness of life; (3) an exploratory stance; and (4) the use of a sophisticated style and techniques of composition that suggest a setting among the intellectual elites, and probably more specifically among professional “academics”.

Keywords: book of Job; moral imagination; genre; wisdom dialogue; Babylonian Theodicy

Chapter.  9020 words. 

Subjects: Biblical Studies

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