This Guide for the
Perplexed will demonstrate how modern biblical scholars have expressed
dissatisfaction with a one-sided historical-critical approach to biblical texts
and have argued that developments in secular literary theory should be applied
in biblical studies. Whereas the historical-critical approach was concerned with
the moment of a text's production (authorship, date, place of writing etc), the
literary approach is concerned with the moment of the text's reception. Eryl W.
Davies shows how and why approaches such as ‘reader-response criticism',
‘feminist criticism', ‘ideological criticism', ‘canonical criticism' and
‘post-colonial criticism' are now becoming more popular in many quarters. The
volume explains to the uninitiated in a readable and accessible form how
strategies originally derived from secular literary criticism have been adopted
by biblical scholars in order to understand the text of Scripture and to
appreciate its relevance.