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Book Cover
Author Sandnes, Karl Olav, 1954-

Title The challenge of Homer : school, pagan poets and early Christianity / Karl Olav Sandnes
Published London ; New York, NY : T & T Clark, [2009]
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Description 1 online resource (xiv, 320 pages)
Series Library of New Testament studies ; 400. Early Christianity in context
T & T Clark library of biblical studies
Library of New Testament studies ; 400
Library of New Testament studies. Early Christianity in context.
T & T Clark library of biblical studies.
Contents School and encyclical education in antiquity. Introduction ; School in the Graeco-Roman world ; The pivotal role of Homer ; Knowledge and formation : the insufficiency of encyclical studies ; Philo of Alexandria : a Hellenistic Jew on Greek education ; Summary of part 1 -- The Christian agôn over encyclical studies in the first four centuries CE. Justin Martyr, his student Tatian and two Ps. Justins ; The apostolic tradition : prohibited occupations ; The teaching of the apostles (Didaskalia apostolorum) and the Syriac tradition : 'avoid all the books of the Gentiles' ; Tertullian : learning but not teaching encyclical studies ; Clement and Origen : Christian teachers in Alexandria ; Flavius Claudius Julianus : emperor and apostate : Christian teachers are immoral ; The Cappadocian fathers ; Jerome : an ascetic addicted to Greek learning ; Augustine : liberal studies : a window on the relationship between Greek culture and Christian faith ; Summary of part 2 -- Looking back to the New Testament. The New Testament and encyclical studies ; Conclusion
Summary Homer was the gateway to education, to the skills of reading and writing. These skills were necessary for the nascent Church. Knowledge of Homer's writings was a sign of Greekness, of at-home-ness in the society. Education was embedded in the mythology, immorality and idolatry of these writings. This challenged the Christians. This study presents how Christians responded to this. The opinions varied from rejection of Homer and all pagan literature, considering them works of the Devil, to critical involvement with this literature. This study attempts to trace the discourse on Homer and education among the Christians back to the New Testament. The topic does not come to the surface, but it is argued that in Paul's letters contrasting attitudes towards the propaideutic logic and the philosophical principle of usus (making right use of) are present. He opposed a logic wherein Christian faith represented the peak of education, the culmination of liberal studies. In his instruction on how to relate to the pagan world, Paul argues in accordance with the principle of usus. The New Testament is not so dependent upon the Homeric poems, as assumed by some scholars. --From publisher's description
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 279-305) and indexes
Notes Print version record
Subject Homer -- Criticism and interpretation.
Bible -- Criticism, interpretation, etc. -- History.
Bible. Epistles of Paul -- Criticism, interpretation, etc.
Church history -- Primitive and early church, ca. 30-600.
Education, Ancient.
Religion and poetry.
Genre/Form Criticism, interpretation, etc.
Form Electronic book
ISBN 0567601110 (electronic bk.)
9780567601117 (electronic bk.)