What's the difference? (Lexham Discourse...)

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Lee | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 19 2018 8:54 AM

Reuben Helmuth:

Marshall Harrison:
its seems to  be the same as letting context modify or define the word rather than going by a strict dictionary definition

For some people, Discourse Analysis may be that. However, as Levinsohn (who has influenced Runge, the author of the Logos discourse products) teaches it, it is so much more than this. 

By the way, a synonymous term is Text Linguistics, which you'll see in the titles of some Logos resources.

Absolutely. DA is not primarily about adding senses or additional nuances to individual words. There's so much more going on.

Discourse Analysis and Other Topics in Biblical Greek (eds. Porter and Carson), p. 22-4:

Although many scholars may have heard the term discourse analysis, few know its methods or employ them in their research. In some ways it is surprising that this area of research has been so slow in arriving in New Testament studies, because there have been a few noteworthy scholars who have employed its methods. Perhaps the best known of these is Louw, who already wrote an insightful article introducing the topic in 1973. He has been instrumental both in the development of a form of discourse analysis and in applying it to numerous texts. But his article, and many subsequent publications, appeared in work related to Bible translation, an arena where many who employ discourse analysis work, and they are, to a large extent because of their own choice, not part of mainstream biblical scholarship. How to account for this widespread disregard, when the discipline of New Testament studies is (or at least is supposed to be) so text-oriented and so given to drawing upon various models from literary and social-scientific disciplines, is difficult to ascertain.

Although discourse analysis is in many ways still in its primary development, to aid in getting a feel for its state of play and to help in understanding the essays that follow, it may be wise to survey the four major schools of thought that have come to be used in New Testament studies. Before doing that, however, several caveats must be registered. First of all, this analysis is strictly preliminary. In the light of what has been said above, it must be seen that this differentiation is a rough and ready one designed to give some guidance in reading a particular author. The lines being drawn are along broad boundaries and are not meant as prescriptive of any given scholar or the school of thought. Secondly, several of the major figures can be identified with several of the schools of thought, since they have worked or their work is utilized in various places. Perhaps this illustrates that there is more commonality in methods than has been realized, or at least that there is a fluidity to boundaries indicating some commonly held presuppositions. Thirdly, there is not much theoretical literature that has actually emerged from New Testament scholars themselves on discourse analysis. Most of the work that has appeared has been interpretative in nature, applying a model to the text of the New Testament, making what is perceived to be necessary modifications in the light of the exigencies of dealing with an epigraphic language. Fourthly, not all of these schools of thought have been equally productive in the study of the New Testament as they have been in non-biblical discourse analysis, so that the numbers associated with each do not necessarily represent their popularity in the larger arena of the entire field of discourse analysis.

Posts 205
Marshall Harrison | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 19 2018 9:22 AM

Sounds like some of the issues I had to deal with when doing speech recognition systems. For example how to you interpret this sentence when you hear it: "Write Mr. Wright with the right directions".

All three words are pronounced the same (leaving out regional accents) but have vastly different meanings.

Then there is reed and read which are pronounced the same but spelled differently. And when used in the past tense there is read again though now its spelled the same as its present tense form but pronounced differently as red.

There are many other examples leaving me to wonder how we can ever communicate.

Even our grammar rules have exceptions' For example "I before E except after C or when pronounced as A as in neighbor or weigh. But then we have the word "their" which breaks that rule.

There are many other examples leaving me to wonder how we can ever communicate.

Rather than being confused by all of this I think I'll just take a nap...or is knap?

Posts 89
David Staveley | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 19 2018 10:01 AM

Reuben Helmuth:

Marshall Harrison:
its seems to  be the same as letting context modify or define the word rather than going by a strict dictionary definition

For some people, Discourse Analysis may be that. However, as Levinsohn (who has influenced Runge, the author of the Logos discourse products) teaches it, it is so much more than this. 

By the way, a synonymous term is Text Linguistics, which you'll see in the titles of some Logos resources.

I totally agree with you that discourse analysis is so much more than the alteration of word meanings. But I tried to keep my description of what discourse analysis is as simple as possible, without invoking in any way the problems encountered with the use of discourse analysis and its encounter with the text of the bible. Those problems are a hot-bed of controversy within scholarship. Some scholars simply don't believe discourse analysis has a legitimate place within biblical scholarship.

So, my intention in what I wrote was as an entrée to the subject, something to wet the appetite so to speak, in order to try to encourage people to give discourse analysis a try themselves.

Dr David Staveley Professor of New Testament. Specializing in the Pauline Epistles, Apocalyptic Judaism, and the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Posts 2584
Lee | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 19 2018 11:58 AM

David Staveley:

So, my intention in what I wrote was as an entrée to the subject, something to wet the appetite so to speak, in order to try to encourage people to give discourse analysis a try themselves.

You were correct. OTOH contrarians were also trying to help. The notion that DA helps to nuance meanings of individual words is not quite Runge's approach. If the buyer buys the Discourse Bundle with this in mind, he might be surprised. Runge's approach runs into entire clauses and inter-sentential relationships. He also makes extensive use of what he calls the "markedness theory." I can't even begin to explain it in a few words.

That is why my advice was simply: buy and try. Logos has a money-back guarantee!

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