David, Saul, and God

David, Saul, and God : Rediscovering an Ancient Story

4.06 (15 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

The biblical story of King David and his conflict with King Saul (1 and 2 Samuel) is one of the most colourful and perennially popular in the Hebrew Bible. In recent years this story has attracted a great deal of scholarly attention, much of it devoted to showing that David was a far less heroic character than appears on the surface. Indeed, more than one has painted David as a despicable tyrant. Paul Borgman provides a counter-reading to these studies, through an attentive reading of the narrative patterns of the text. He focuses on one of the key features of ancient Hebrew narrative poetics - repeated patterns - taking special note of even the small variations each time a pattern recurs. He argues that such 'hearing cues' would have alerted an ancient audience to the answers to such questions as 'Who is David?' and 'What is so wrong with Saul?' The narrative insists on such questions, says Borgman, slowly disclosing answers through patterns of repeated scenarios and dominant motifs that yield, finally, the supreme work of storytelling in ancient literature. Borgman concludes with a comparison with Homer's storytelling technique, demonstrating that the David story is indeed a masterpiece and David (as Baruch Halpern has said) 'the first truly modern human.'show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 352 pages
  • 165.1 x 236.22 x 38.1mm | 453.59g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Revised and Fir.
  • black & white illustrations
  • 0195331605
  • 9780195331608
  • 1,195,598

About Paul Borgman

Professor of English, Gordon Collegeshow more

Review quote

Borgman explores the literary text as we have it, and determines the narrator's meanings on the basis of eleven patterns of repetition that give the account its distinctive narrative structure. * International Review of Biblical Studies * Offers a new way of understanding ambiguous or seemingly contradictory texts which is a welcome contribution to this field of study. * J. E. Tollington, Journal for the Study of the Old Testament 33.5 *show more

Table of contents

INTRODUCTION: SOLVING THE STORYS MYSTERY OF DAVID AND GOD; CONCLUSION: DAVID AND GOD, ODYSSEUS AND ATHENE: CHARACTER AND MORAL UNIVERSEshow more

Rating details

15 ratings
4.06 out of 5 stars
5 40% (6)
4 27% (4)
3 33% (5)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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