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Romanen och evangeliet: Former för Jesusgestaltning i Pär Lagerkvists prosa
Uppsala University, Humanistisk-samhällsvetenskapliga vetenskapsområdet, Faculty of Theology, Department of Theology.
2001 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
The Novel and the Gospel : Kinds of Jesus-representation in the prose fiction of Pär Lagerkvist (English)
Abstract [en]

This study of the reception of the Gospels in modern fiction combines biblical studies with literary criticism. As a dissertation in the field of New Testament exegesis, the study attempts to establish a middle course between a postmodern (Anglo-American) cultural studies-approach, and a more classical (German) examination of the Bible’s evolving history of interpretation or Wirkungsgeschichte.

The task is to examine the literary forms by which the figure of Jesus is being depicted in two novels by the Swedish author Pär Lagerkvist – Det eviga leendet (1920, The Eternal Smile), and Barabbas (1950) – and to investigate how the artistic representation is related to the biblical texts. As a way of paying critical attention to more subtle and indirect connections between the Bible and modern literature, the study applies a genre-historical method. The investigation highlights the aesthetic literarisation, and ideological profanisation, of biblical forms such as parable, cult-legend, miracle-story, Gospel, and martyr-legend.

It is concluded that the history of reception should not be regarded as an "hermeneutical appendix" in the exegetical procedure, but rather as an integral part of the proper historical-critical inquiry into the meaning and significance of the biblical documents. The Formgeschichte of the Bible is not something that exclusively takes place before and behind the biblical texts, but also after and in front of them. The Bible therefore, must not only be read as literature in a purely formal way as has been customary, but needs to be read also as history of literature. Certainly this is so, if we want to understand the culturally formative function of the Bible.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Skellefteå: Norma Bokförlag , 2001. , 272 p.
Keyword [en]
Religion, Jesus in fiction, the Bible and literature, the Bible and the arts, reception history, reception criticism, reception theory, Pär Lagerkvist, Barabbas, Det eviga leendet (The Eternal Smile), Gospel, genre history, form history, Hans Robert Jauss, "literarisation", biblical cultural studies
Keyword [sv]
National Category
Religious Studies
Research subject
New Testament Exegesis
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-1709ISBN: 91-7217-044-1OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-1709DiVA: diva2:161288
Public defence
2002-03-02, Universitetshuset, sal IX, Uppsala, 13:00
Available from: 2002-02-04 Created: 2002-02-04Bibliographically approved

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