Social, Political, and Ideological Criticism

Christopher Rowland

in The Oxford Handbook of Biblical Studies

Published in print April 2006 | ISBN: 9780199254255
Published online April 2009 |

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Religion and Theology

Social, Political, and Ideological Criticism

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Religious Studies
  • Biblical Studies


Show Summary Details


This chapter examines the ways in which ideological criticism may contribute to biblical studies. The analysis focuses on the central role of the critique of ideology within the Marxist tradition, and the ways in which that rich tradition of discussion can serve biblical exegesis and theology. It presents two specific examples of the way in which there has been a challenge to dominant ideologies. First, the emergence of liberationist hermeneutics has posed questions to a dominant First World, biblical hermeneutics and its idealist presuppositions, in which the history of ideas have taken precedence over their relationship to their social formation. Second, there have been throughout the history of Christianity alternative patterns of biblical interpretation, with different priorities and with the interests of readers, from below other than the lites of the day. The chapter concludes with some consideration of the historical dimension of ideological criticism in which different doctrinal and practical priorities have emerged within readings of the Bible which have emerged apart from the dominant ideological contexts.

Keywords: ideology; biblical scholarship; Christianity; social context; liberationist hermeneutics

Chapter.  8137 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies ; Biblical Studies

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.