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The Birth of Christian HistoryMemory and Time from Mark to Luke-Acts$
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Eve-Marie Becker

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780300165098

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300165098.001.0001

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Shaping History in the 1st and 2nd Centuries CE in Its Literary Culture

Shaping History in the 1st and 2nd Centuries CE in Its Literary Culture

(p.34) 2 Shaping History in the 1st and 2nd Centuries CE in Its Literary Culture
The Birth of Christian History

Eve-Marie Becker

Yale University Press

This chapter studies the interrelation of history-writing and literary culture. It considers the function of history-writing within the context of Hellenistic literary culture, as historiography at the time can be seen as a literary phenomenon. History-writing represents a substantial contribution to ancient literature; it circulates within the sphere of the ancient literary canon. Chronologically speaking, Mark and Luke follow in the literary tradition set by the earliest in Western history-writing, yet literary tradition among the earliest Christian authors also differs from the Greco-Roman world. Where historiographical topics and concepts vary significantly from one author to the next, in Mark and Luke, the subject of the narrative, namely, the gospel, remains surprisingly constant.

Keywords:   historiography, history-writing, Greco-Roman literary traditions, ancient literature, ancient literary canon, ancient literary culture, Western history-writing

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