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ERIC Number: ED523423
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 292
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1244-1571-0
Reading between the Lines: A Distinctly Pragmatic Approach to 1 Thess 4:13-5:11 and 2 Thess 2:1-12
Schulze, Robert J.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
This dissertation investigates the viability of utilizing linguistic pragmatics to interpret the biblical text and to determine its hermeneutical significance. As a complementary aid to historical and literary readings of a text, linguistic pragmatics utilizes certain tools to discover and/or describe the implicit meaning encoded into a text. A pragmatic inquiry, then attempts to uncover meaning components in the linguistic structure of a text as it is uttered within a specific context. The chapters of this dissertation work toward the thesis that linguistic pragmatics can operate as a hermeneutical aid to biblical texts. After a chapter of introduction, chapter two surveys the discipline, chapter three discusses past interpretive efforts utilizing some form of pragmatics in their endeavors, and chapter four proposes a pragmatic method for such an interpretation. The actual analysis comes in two parts: chapter five investigates the communicational situation and structure of the letters, while chapter six contains the actual pragmatic analysis of 1 Thess 4:13-5:11 and 2 Thess 2:1-12. The conclusion, chapter seven, summarizes the findings of this project. The pragmatic tools that this investigation employs are deixis (indexical reference), speech act theory, and conversational implicature. The first of these, deixis, studies the manner in which certain linguistic elements reference personal, temporal, spatial or social elements in order to determine certain meaning components within a specific, situational context. Elements of speech act theory become relevant to exegesis as it identifies different illocutionary acts in a series of propositions, revealing that communication senders encode their intentions into propositional forms. Additionally, conversational implicature enables interpreters to study texts beneath the umbrella and communicative assumptions of the cooperative principle and other communication maxims. It is the incorporation of these three pragmatic tools (topics) that will contribute toward a "pragmatic reading" of the biblical text. The production of a pragmatic reading of the biblical text serves to further this discipline's contribution to biblical scholarship. To date, little work has been done to investigate how pragmatics might contribute to an exegetical method, and more precisely, how it could incorporate itself within other methods of biblical interpretation, especially discourse analysis. By incorporating pragmatic reading strategies, interpreters will find an added resource for interpreting biblical texts. This dissertation, then, enhances previous studies regarding the use of pragmatics in biblical interpretation, but it also reveals that pragmatics is a complementary endeavor alongside discourse analysis, especially in relation to the manner in which propositions are used in a discourse unit. Furthermore, this dissertation shows that more attention can be paid to the participants encoded into a discourse unit and, the manner in which spatial and temporal elements are encoded into the linguistic structure of a text. It is through these contributing factors that linguistic pragmatics is presented in this dissertation as a useful tool in the interpretive process. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A