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The Reader in the Text: Narrative Material

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Chapter Summary

The notion 'reader in the text', however ambiguous and paradoxical, has become part of the jargon of New Testament scholars. This chapter addresses the following problem areas concerning narratives in general and narratives in the New Testament in particular: Is there a reader 'in' the text? Who or what is the reader in the text? And, how is reader in the text? Since every text is constructed with specific readers in mind, the question arises whether heuristic devices like 'implied', 'encoded', or 'model reader' can help the flesh-and-blood reader to follow contours of the text presentation and to actualize the text? The chapter confronts these problems theoretically and methodologically with a view to the interpretation of narratives in the New Testament. It pays attention to the problem of reader in the text in literary theory. The chapter addresses the phenomenon of the reader in the text in New Testament narratives.

Keywords: literary theory; model reader; New Testament narratives; text presentation



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