Cover

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pp. 1-3

Title Page

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pp. 4-4

Copyright Page, Dedication

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pp. 5-9

Contents

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pp. ix-xii

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Introduction

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pp. 1-15

In 1534, at the direction of Henry VIII, who had been acclaimed “Defender of the Faith” by Pope Leo X a mere thirteen years earlier, England turned from being a Catholic nation to a Protestant nation; when Henry’s son was crowned as Edward VI in 1547, a series of sweeping and far more radical church reforms were instituted, making the break with Rome even more...

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Chapter 1. "The Jews Perverted and the Gentiles Converted": Confessions and Conversos

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pp. 16-39

The Christian discourse of conversion begins with Paul, whose turn from Pharisaic persecutor of Jesus and his followers to apostle to the Gentiles (especially as it is described in Acts 9) marks a dramatic, miraculous transformation. The question of Paul’s conversion, however, has become a hotly contested one in recent years, part of a more extensive interrogation of the...

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Chapter 2. "Thy People Shall Be My People": Typology, Gender, and Biblical Converts

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pp. 40-81

God’s charge to Abram in Genesis 12.1, “Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from they father’s house, unto a land that I will show thee,” captures the inextricable link between the formation of a new identity and the necessary separation from earlier attachments such a new identity demands; in answering this divine call, Abram enters into a privileged, covenantal...

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Chapter 3. "The Meaning, Not the Name I Call": Converting the Bible and Homer

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pp. 82-111

The Augustinian paradigm for conversion, inspired by the call of tolle lege, “Take up and read,” proposes an important connection between textual encounter and religious transformation, a connection that may already be suggested by—or perhaps read back into—Jesus’ explanation for his use of parables.1 Mark (revised in Matthew and strikingly absent in Luke) reports...

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Chapter 4. Alchemies of Conversion: Shakespeare, Jonson, Vaughan, and the Science of Jewish Transmutation

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pp. 112-151

In February 2007 a memo was circulated by the offices of Georgia state legislator Ben Bridges, calling for the elimination of the teaching of evolution in public schools on the grounds that it was derived from “Rabbinic writings” and other Jewish texts. While it may come as a surprise to some that “tax-supported evolution science” is really a Jewish plot, and that “evolutionism"...

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Chapter 5. Conversion and Enthusiasm: Radical Religion and the Poetics of Paradise Regained

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pp. 152-192

The fictions of conversion I have addressed in the preceding chapters render their transformations as changes from one more or less visible state/status to another, whether it be the “conversion” of Rahab and Ruth from heathen to Hebrew, biblical text and Homeric epic from ancient language to modern vernacular, or base metal to gold and quintessence. In each of these case studies...

Notes

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pp. 193-230

Bibliography

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pp. 231-254

Index

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pp. 255-260

Acknowledgments

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pp. 261-263