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Liberation of Christmas: The Infancy Narratives in Social Context Paperback – September, 1993

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Paperback, September, 1993
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About the Author

Richard A. Horsley is Distinguished Professor of Liberal Arts and the Study of Religion at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. He is the author of numerous works, including 'Jesus and Empire' 'Jesus and the Spiral of Violence' 'Galilee' and 'Hearing the Whole Story' He is also editor of 'Christian Origins' which is volume 1 of A People's History of Christianity. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Continuum International Publishing Group (September 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0826405924
  • ISBN-13: 978-0826405920
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.3 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #141,906 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Steven H Propp TOP 100 REVIEWER on November 29, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Richard Horsley is professor of Religious Studies at the University of Massachusetts; he has written/edited many other books, such as Christmas Unwrapped: Consumerism, Christ, and Culture, Jesus and Empire: The Kingdom of God and the New World Disorder, Christian Origins (People's History of Christianity), etc.

He wrote in the Introduction to this 1993 book, "Christmas is now a fantasy that has considerable commercial but little historical significance. It would be difficult indeed for the Christmas story to be heard in such an overwhelming cultural context... The conflict that the sensitive reader may feel between the infancy narratives of Jesus and the current celebration of Christmas, therefore, cannot be understood in terms of a conflict between religion and economics or 'materialism.' ... If we want to appreciate biblical literature on its own terms... we must adjust our mode of appropriation... This means ... attempting to understand that politicoeconomic affairs are inseparable from religious matters in most biblical material, and... import of the biblical material is thus also broader than simply religious." (Pg. x-xi)

He proposes, "If we no longer feel compelled defensively and categorically to dismiss the stories of Jesus' birth, or the narrative details in them, as 'myth'---then perhaps we could read the stories as history-like narratives ...
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