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Barbara Green, O.P., professor of biblical studies at DSPT and GTU will present:
"Can We Do That? Reading Sacred Texts as They Read Us"
The 26th Annual Reading of the Sacred Texts at the GTU.
Reception at 6:30 pm; Lecture at 7:00 pm
How—with what legitimacy, rationale, skill, and effect—can we address fresh questions to our sacred texts? A certain strand of scholarship has valorized objectivity on the part of readers, strict attention to original historical contexts. And yet we also know from the arts that those who create such texts are deeply responsive to changing times. Our eyes and ears will not perceive quite the same world as did the authors of our texts. With the assistance of some hermeneutical tenets to guide interpretation, we will read one scene featuring Priam and Achilles from Homer’s Iliad book 24 and another of David and God narrated in the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament’s 2 Samuel 5-7, viewing also a Baroque artwork of God and David. Since both scenes involve the workings of compassion, we will engage the question of our own capacities to read such material help or hinder us, and how deep texts may prompt compassion in us.
Barbara Green, OP is Professor of Biblical Studies at the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology at the Graduate Theological Union.