In this Book

The Prophetic Law
summary
To read literature is to read the way literature reads. René Girard’s immense body of work supports this thesis bountifully. Whether engaging the European novel, ancient Greek tragedy, Shakespeare’s plays, or Jewish and Christian scripture, Girard teaches us to read prophetically, not by offering a method he has developed, but by presenting the methodologies they have developed, the interpretative readings already available within (and constitutive of) such bodies of classical writing. In The Prophetic Law, literary scholar, theorist, and critic Sandor Goodhart divides his essays on René Girard since 1983 into four groupings. In three, he addresses Girardian concerns with Biblical scripture (Genesis and Exodus), literature (the European novel and Shakespeare), and philosophy and religious studies issues (especially ethical and Jewish subject matters). In a fourth section, he reproduces some of the polemical exchanges in which he has participated with others—including René Girard himself—as part of what could justly be deemed Jewish-Christian dialogue. The twelve texts that make up the heart of this captivating volume constitute the bulk of the author’s writings to date on Girard outside of his three previous books on Girardian topics. Taken together, they offer a comprehensive engagement with Girard’s sharpest and most original literary, anthropological, and scriptural insights.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. pp. C-C
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  1. Title Page, Copyright Page
  2. pp. i-vi
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. ix-xiv
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  1. An Introductionto Girardian Reading
  2. pp. xv-xxxvi
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  1. Dialogue among Girardians
  2. pp. 1-2
  1. “I Am Joseph”
  2. pp. 3-32
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  1. A Jewish-Christian Dialogue
  2. pp. 33-56
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  1. al lo-chamas ’asah (AlthoughHe Had Done No Violence)
  2. pp. 57-76
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  1. Response by René Girard andReply to René Girard
  2. pp. 77-92
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  1. Part 2: Girardian Reading and the Scriptural
  2. pp. 93-94
  1. The End of Sacrifice
  2. pp. 95-116
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  1. From Sacrificial Violenceto Responsibility
  2. pp. 117-138
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  1. Part 3: Girardian Reading and the Literary
  2. pp. 139-140
  1. Reading Religion, Literature,and the End of Desire
  2. pp. 141-148
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  1. “Nothing Extenuate”
  2. pp. 149-166
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  1. Part 4: Girardian Reading and the Ethical
  2. pp. 167-168
  1. Reading Halachicallyand Aggadically
  2. pp. 169-186
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  1. The Self and Other People
  2. pp. 187-200
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  1. From the Sacred to the Holy
  2. pp. 201-228
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  1. Back to the Future
  2. pp. 229-242
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  1. Conclusions
  2. pp. 243-258
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 259-278
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  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 279-290
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 291-296
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