Teaching through Song in Antiquity: Didactic Hymnody among Greeks, Romans, Jews, and Christians
Gordley, Matthew E.
TŁbingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2011 pp. xiv + 445. Ä89.00
Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament, 2/302
Description: While scholars of antiquity have long spoken of didactic hymns, no single volume has defined or explored this phenomenon across cultural boundaries in antiquity. In this monograph Matthew E. Gordley provides a broad definition of didactic hymnody and examines how didactic hymns functioned at the intersection of historical circumstances and the needs of a given community to perceive itself and its place in the cosmos and to respond accordingly. Comparing the use of didactic hymnody in a variety of traditions, this study illuminates the multifaceted ways that ancient hymns and psalms contributed to processes of communal formation among the human audiences that participated in the praise either as hearers or active participants. The author finds that in Greek, Roman, Jewish, and Christian contexts, many hymns and prayers served a didactic role fostering the ongoing development of a sense of identity within particular communities.
Subjects: Methods, Historical Approaches, History, Other History, Literary Approaches, Poetics
Review by Steven Thompson
Citation: Steven Thompson, review of Matthew E. Gordley, Teaching through Song in Antiquity: Didactic Hymnody among Greeks, Romans, Jews, and Christians, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2016).
Adobe Acrobat Reader
All RBL reviews are published in PDF format. To view these reviews, you must have downloaded and installed the FREE version of Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you do not have the Reader or you have an older version of the Reader, you can download the most recent version now.