Revelation 21-22 in Light of Jewish and Greco-Roman Utopianism
Gilchrest, Eric J.
Leiden: Brill, 2013 pp. xii + 330. $180
Biblical Interpretation Series, 118
Description: In Revelation 21-22 in Light of Jewish and Greco-Roman Utopianism, Eric J. Gilchrest offers a creative and compelling reading of Revelation 21-22 as understood through the lens of ancient utopianism. The work is in two parts beginning with a detailed portrait of ancient utopianism based on Greco-Roman and Jewish traditions. The portrait sketches the “topography” of the utopian landscape, which includes a thorough account of various traditions using fourteen utopian topoi or motifs.
The author then moves to a description of Revelation’s new Jerusalem in light of these two utopian traditions. With sensitivity to how this text would have been read by each utopian perspective, the author constructs a unique reading of a classic passage that highlights the variety of ways the text originally may have been heard.
Subjects: Bible, New Testament, Revelation, Literature, Methods, Historical Approaches, History, History of Interpretation
Review by Thomas Hieke
Citation: Thomas Hieke, review of Eric J. Gilchrest, Revelation 21-22 in Light of Jewish and Greco-Roman Utopianism, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2014).
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