Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.575743
Title: The audience of Matthew : an appraisal of the local audience thesis
Author: Vine, Cedric Everard William
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2012
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Abstract:
This thesis seeks to establish the inadequacy of readings of the Gospel of Matthew as intended for, and a reflection of, a local audience or community. Despite repeated challenges, the local audience thesis continues to dominate a large proportion of Matthean scholarship, and, as such, the issue of determining the Gospel's audience remains an open question. This thesis posits four main critiques. First, the assumptions which underpin the text- focused process of identifying the Gospel's audience, whether deemed to be local, Jewish, or universal, lack clarity. Literary entities such as the implied reader, the intended reader, or the authorial audience, prove inadequate as a means of identifying the Gospel's audience. Second, local audience readings necessarily exclude plot-related developments and are both selective and restrictive in their treatment of characterisation. Much is lost or ignored, as a coherent and simplified audience context is derived from the complex narrative world of the Gospel. Third, this thesis argues that many in an audience of the Gospel would have incorporated their experience of hearing Matthew within pre-existing mental representations shaped by Mark or other early traditions. Thus, they would have understood the Gospel as relating to events and settings distinct from their own context, regardless of the degree to which they identified with characters or events in the Gospel. Fourth, this thesis argues that early Christian audiences were largely heterogeneous in terms of ethnicity, age, sex, wealth, familiarity with Christian traditions, and levels of commitment. As such, the aural reception of the Gospel would have resulted in a variety of impacts. A number of these critiques extend beyond the local audience option and for this reason this thesis does not posit a particular audience for the Gospel.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.575743  DOI: Not available
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