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    Covenant and Pax Deorum: Polyvalent Prodigies in Josephus' "Jewish War"

    Davies, Jonathan (2019) Covenant and Pax Deorum: Polyvalent Prodigies in Josephus' "Jewish War". Histos, 13. pp. 78-96. ISSN 2046-5963

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    This paper considers the question of culturally-directed doublespeak in Josephus’ Jewish War, of the possibility of Josephus sending different messages to Gentile and Jewish readers in the same text. It offers two readings of a passage in Jewish War 6 which describes the portents which prefigure the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple, and explores how Josephus expresses his narrative in a way which simultaneously evokes parallels with both Roman religion and biblical prophecy and historiography, resulting in a passage which resonates radically differently depending on the parallels which the reader can bring to bear, and which inverts the cultural power-dynamic of Roman imperialism by offering greater interpretative power to those readers who come from an unprivileged provincial culture. It offers a fruitful approach to considering an author who is marked above all by hybridity, and by a mastery of more than one literary tradition.

    Item Type: Article
    Keywords: Josephus; Judaism; Roman religion; hybridity; biblical historiography; doublespeak;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Arts & Humanities > Ancient Classics
    Item ID: 14072
    Depositing User: Jonathan Davies
    Date Deposited: 24 Feb 2021 17:01
    Journal or Publication Title: Histos
    Publisher: Newcastle University
    Refereed: Yes
    Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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