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The (Im)Polite Jesus

An Analysis of Jesus’ Verbal Rudeness in Matthew’s Gospel


Carlos Olivares

This book is an informed, focused, deep, and creative analysis of the topic of (im)politeness applied to Jesus in Matthew’s Gospel, with in-depth conclusions and analysis about the Matthean Jesus’ (im)politeness. This study utilizes innovative methodological approaches regarding the analysis and interpretation of the subject in Matthew’s Gospel, finding similarities with the language and (im)polite engagements of other first-century Greco-Roman characters and the Matthean Jesus in similar contexts.

The (Im)Polite Jesus would make an excellent addition for studies on Matthew’s Gospel or courses focused on biblical studies, biblical literature, biblical hermeneutics, methodologies, and in discussions about exposing interpreters’ cultural biases when addressing the topic of (im)politeness.

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One of the risks of any foreign social engagement is to judge negatively words, expressions and social gestures from a personal perspective because they look strange or deplorable to the cultural eyes of the interpreters. This kind of appraisal, which is based on the individual’s background, is sometimes used to measure adversely everything that goes against modern and common conventions, putting aside all that looks out of place. Something similar, in my view, can be said when readers engage with ancient texts, in particular when certain behaviours, for example, appear to be functioning in a different way than they usually do in the interpreter’s world. The topic of (im)politeness is a clear example of this.

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