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How We Read the Bible: A Guide to Scripture's Style and Meaning
 You're here » Christian Books Index » How We Read the Bible: A Guide to Scripture's Style and Meaning

How We Read the Bible: A Guide to Scripture's Style and Meaning

Author: Karolien Vermeulen and Elizabeth R. Hayes
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The Bible is interpreted in a variety of ways and through a myriad of lenses. But how we interpret Scripture depends first of all on how we read it. This handbook focuses on the process of reading itself, taking a cognitive-stylistic approach grounded in recent research on language and the mind. 

Through accessible explanations of twelve key stylistic elements, How We Read the Bible provides all who study Scripture with the tools to understand what happens when we read and draw meaning from biblical texts. Rather than problematizing the divide between authors from the ancient world and a modern-day audience, Karolien Vermeulen and Elizabeth Hayes bridge the gap by exploring the interaction between the cues of the text and the context of the reader. With numerous examples from the Old and New Testaments and helpful suggestions for further study, How We Read the Bible can be used within any framework of biblical study—historical, theological, literary, and others—as a pathway to meeting Scripture on its own terms.

Table of Contents

          Introduction: On How to Read the Bible and Why We Need to Know It
I. The Bits and Pieces of Reading
          1. Words in Context: Building Blocks of Meaning
          2. Building Categories: The Use of Prototypes
          3. Attention and Focus: Playing with Figure and Ground
          4. Perspective and Pointing the Way: Deixis
          5. Grammar and Cognitive Grammar: Talking about Language
II. Mapping Corresponding Dots
          6. What Comes Next: The Predictability of Schemas and Scripts
          7. How We See the Text: Mental Spaces and Blends
          8. Connecting the Unrelated: The Ubiquity of Metaphor
          9. Connecting the Related: The Power of Metonymy
III. The Process of Reading a Text
          10. Reading in Context: The Role of Discourse Worlds
          11. Reading as Imagining Different Worlds: The Meaning of Possible Worlds
          12. Reading as Process: Building Text Worlds

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