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Galatians Re-Imagined: Reading With the Eyes of the Vanquished (Paul in Critical Contexts) Hardcover – February 1, 2010

4.8 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Brigitte Kahl is Professor of New Testament at Union Theological Seminary, New York. She received her Th.D. and Dr.Sc.Theol. from Humboldt University in Berlin and is an ordained minister of the Protestant Church of Berlin-Brandenburg.

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Product Details

  • Series: Paul in Critical Contexts
  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Fortress Press (February 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800638646
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800638641
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,086,864 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Brigitte Kahl is a trailblazing scholar and interpreter of Paul. Born in East Germany, she is a Professor of New Testament at Union Theological Seminary in New York City. Her work focuses on the relationship between New Testament texts and the Roman Empire. She has published extensively in both German and English on a variety of New Testament topics, and is a poineering feminist biblical scholar. Her book, Galatians Re-Imagined: Reading through the Eyes of the Vanquished (2010), is a radical reinterpretation of Paul's theology as well as an analysis of Roman imperial ideology and its significance to contemporary Western civilization.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Brigitte Kahl brings to this insightful reading of the Galatians a deep knowledge of the classical world and a keen eye, and ear, for the themes of Roman imperial ideology. Ranging over the history of Roman interactions with the Gallic/Galatian peoples, perceptions of Galatian savagery, and representations of defeated Gauls/Galatians, Kahl gives particular attention to the symbol of the Great Altar of Pergamon and its codes of cultural conflict. She shows that themes of imperial propaganda--order v. lawlessness, civilization vs. barbarity, harmony vs. anarchy--echo in Paul's letter and highlight the deep issues at stake in the Galatian crisis. Paul's struggle is motivated not by Jewish antagonists but by Galatian anxiety about their identity status on a landscape where withdrawal from the civic celebrations of Rome's glory was held in the gravest suspicion. ''Galatians re-imagined'' interprets the letter as an exhortation to stand with the powerless, yet not vanquished, rather than with the imperial worldview of the imperial conqueror, who is not lord supreme. The core of the Galatian controversy is that circumcision was less a body-marker of Jew or gentile, and more a signifier of political compliance or non-compliance with Roman civic obligations as proselytes sought Jewish identity to escape the demands of the imperial cult. The circumcision solution, according to Paul, who claims to be the voice of "proper" Judaism and law observance, is less an expression of faithful, theologically motivated Jewish Torah-obedience than of political realism. Hence, Paul presents foolish Galatians with another option, inclusion without circumcision, which fits into his fundamentally Jewish apocalyptic framework expecting an end-time pilgrimage of the nations to Jerusalem (Isa 2:2-3; Zeph 3:9).Read more ›
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Brigitte Kahl reimagines the interpretation of Galatians in the context of the centuries long struggle between the Romans and the Gauls or Galatians for the domination of the ancient Mediterranean world. The political metaphors that developed in that period, and which Rome used as its excuse to build the universal empire, were taken forward into the time of Paul when the only good Galatian was a submissive and obedient citizen of the Empire. Paul's radical Gospel of freedom refuses to keep to and live within the categories of Imperial Order - Slave, Free, Judean, Galatian, Male, Female and so those from Jerusalem who waned to come to and accommodation with the Roman Imperium tried to force people into these categories. Paul write the furious response that we know as the Epistle to the Galatians in an effort to persuade people to hold fast to their freedom.
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I am a fan of celtic history, and this book brings celtic history and the new testament together. Read it and your view of the United States just might change.
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