Breaking a 200-year impasse on the origins of the gospelsBiblical scholars want to get to the roots of the gospels—the very earliest memories of Jesus and his world. Of course, we know about all
Breaking a 200-year impasse on the origins of the gospels
Biblical scholars want to get to the roots of the gospels—the very earliest memories of Jesus and his world. Of course, we know about all the major concepts at work here—Q, the Urgospel, priority—but it seems like a definitive solution to the Synoptic problem is hopelessly unattainable. Why the impasse? And where do we go from here?
In Jesus Tradition, Early Christian Memory, and Gospel Writing, Alan Kirk guides us through the history of biblical scholars’ quest for the authentic source. Kirk reveals that outdated assumptions about ancient media realities have caused the past two centuries of academic deadlock. Using cutting-edge scholarship on orality, memory, and tradition formation, he shows how the origins of the gospels may be found in the memory practices of the earliest Jesus communities.
Jesus Tradition, Early Christian Memory, and Gospel Writing is an essential resource for scholars and students looking to better understand this complex and rapidly changing field.
View Biographical note
Alan Kirk is professor of religion at James Madison University, Virginia, where he teaches a range of courses in New Testament and early Christianity. His research focuses on ancient gospels, including applications of cognitive and cultural memory theory to problems in the origins and history of the gospel tradition.
View Table of contents
Table of Contents
1. Written Gospel or Oral? Lessing, Herder, and the Road to Strauss
2. Tendenzkritik: Drifting Back to Mark
3. Finding Jesus in the Two Document Hypothesis: Holtzmann to Wernle
4. Form Critical Revolution?
5. The Farrer Juggernaut
6. The Primitive Congregation Reborn: The “Galilean Q People”