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A Secular Bible?

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image of Method & Theory in the Study of Religion

AbstractWhat has been called secular criticism among some scholars in the Society of Biblical Literature has been pursued as a critique and alternative to traditional theological studies. The question is whether the term secular is being used to describe a method, characterize the biblical literature, or propose a postmodern hermeneutic for a secular age. The article explores these issues to find that secular criticism has not been able to escape the assumption of biblical authority by criticizing theological interpretations. The alternative would be to study the Christian myth embedded in the Bible and render a cultural critique.

Affiliations: 1: Claremont Graduate University608 West Ninth Street, Claremont, CA


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1. Avalos Hector The End of Biblical Studies 2007 Amherst, New York Prometheus Books
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14. Reed Randall W. A Clash of Ideologies: Marxism, Literation Theology, and Apocalypticism in New Testament Studies 2010 Eugene, Oregon Pickwick
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17. Taylor Charles A Secular Age 2007 Cambridge, MA Harvard University Press
18. Thompson Thomas L. The Mythic Past: Biblical Archeology and the Myth of Israel 1999 London Random House
19. Wiebe Donald "Secular theology is still theology, not the academic study of religion" Bulletin of the Council of Societies for the Study of Religion 2008 Vol 37 3 77 81
20. Wood James "Is that all there is?: Secularism and its discontents" The New Yorker 2011 Vol 15 & 22 87 92

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