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Att leva och läsa Bibeln: Textpraktiker i två kristna församlingar
Linköping University, The Tema Institute. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
1992 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
Living and Reading the Bible : Literacy Practices in Two Christian Congregations (English)
Abstract [en]

This thesis is based on two years of participant observation in two Christian congregations in a Swedish town. The Book-congregation represents the core of Swedish Free Churches (baptism), the Life-congregation (faith community) belongs to a movement inspired by North American Fundamentalism. During the 1980s, a cult controversy has emerged in Sweden, concerning the legitimacy of the new congregations, to which the latter belongs. "Ways of taking" from the Bible, that haveimportance for ideologizing processes, is part of the agenda of the controversy.

The aim of the thesis is to Study the ethnography of Bible reading, is similar to that in other studies within ethnography and sociology of culture, aiming at exploring the "ideological" and sociocultural embeddedness of communication. Other analytical concepts used, such as interpretive communities,strategies and narratives, are derived from literary theory and reception analysis.

Analyzing Bible reading from this perspective leads to a rich portrayal of the literacy practices of the members. Various literacy events in the communicative economy are highlighted, including interviews, Bible classes, healing classes and the members reading of certain texts from the New Testament (chapters 3-6). This leads to the decentering ofthe notion of "interpretation", which has been the major· focus in previous studies. The keywords of living and reading the Bible are illustrative of the literacy practices in the congregations.

The literacy practices are discussed in relation to the members attitudes towards society and modernity. The poetics and politics of Bible reading involve different conceptions of the role of the Bible in contemporary moral discourse; as a "tool" or as a "weapon" in the competition for cultural legitimacy. Throughout the thesis, the practice of re-presentationin science and religion is discussed. It is argued that methodological reflexivity facilitates an understanding of modern and anti-modern communicative cultures as realities lived.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköpings universitet , 1992. , 352 p.
Linköping Studies in Arts and Science, ISSN 0282-9800 ; 84
Keyword [en]
Bible reading, , New Testament translation, reception analysis, interpretive 'colnmunities, ethnography of communication, literacy practice, modernity, reflexivity, free churches, faith communities
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-35103Local ID: 24866ISBN: 91-7871-007-3OAI: diva2:255951
Public defence
1992-10-21, Sal Elysion, Hus-T, Universitetsområdet Valla, Linköping, 13:15 (Swedish)
Available from: 2009-10-10 Created: 2009-10-10 Last updated: 2012-06-01Bibliographically approved

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Forstorp, Per-Anders
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