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Paul and the Politics of Difference

  • By Jae Won Lee
Paul lies at the core of the constant debate about the opposition between Christianity and Judaism in biblical interpretation and public discourse as well. The so-called new perspective on Paul has not offered a significant break from the formidable paradigm of Christian universalism vs. Jewish particularism in Pauline scholarship. This book seeks to liberate Paul from the Western logic of identity and its dominant understanding of difference, which tend to identify Pauline Christianity as its ally. Drawing attention to the currency of discourses on difference in contemporary theories as well as in biblical studies, the author critically examines the hermeneutical relevance of a contextual and relational understanding of difference and applies it to interpret the dynamics of Jew-Gentile difference reflected particularly in meal practices (Galatians 2:1-21 and Romans 14:1--15:13) of early Christian communities. This book argues that by deconstructing the hierarchy of social relations underlying the Jew-Gentile difference in different community situations, Paul promotes a politics of difference, which affirms a preferential option for the socially ""weak,"" that is, solidarity with the weak. Paul's politics of difference is invoked as a liberative potential for the vision of egalitarian justice in the face of contemporary globalism's proliferation of differences. ""Jae Won Lee argues convincingly for the interaction between postcolonial studies and approaches to Paul 'Beyond the New Perspective, ' demonstrating the theological significance of the overcoming of universalizing interpretations of Paul in an exemplary way in relation, but not confined to, Korean Christianity. Lee's study highlights the importance of the ongoing scholarly conversation at the intersection of diverse approaches in biblical interpretation for and beyond the academy."" --Kathy Ehrensperger, Reader in New Testament Studies, School of Theology, Religious Studies, and Islamic Studies, University of Wales, Trinity Saint David Lampeter, Wales ""Unequivocally constructive, this exposition centers on Paul's resolution of Jewish-Gentile difference. Lee shapes an interpretive worldview creatively but critically from feminism, postmodernism, postcolonialism, minjung theology, and ancient meal practices. Her innovative reading of Galatians and Romans through this perspective produces a compelling challenge for equality with difference--a challenge to ponder to the utmost. This is a must for collateral reading for Paul and Jewish-Gentile difference, and for human life together."" --Robert L. Brawley, Albert G. McGaw Professor of New Testament emeritus, McCormick Theological Seminary, Chicago, IL Jae Won Lee taught as Assistant Professor of New Testament at McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago for eight years. She is one of the editors of and a contributor to Luke-Acts and Empire: Essays in Honor of Robert L. Brawley (2011).

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    Product Specs
    • SKU: 9781498227148
    • Manufacturer: Pickwick Pubn
    • ISBN 13: 9781498227148
    • Publication Date: 08/01/2014
    • Format: Hardcover
    • Author: Jae Won Lee
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