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Mind, Text, and Commentary

Noetic Exegesis in Origen of Alexandria, Didymus the Blind, and Evagrius Ponticus

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Blossom Stefaniw

Scholarship on early Christian exegesis is full of puzzlement at the commentator’s apparent lack of concern for the literal or historical meaning of the text, usually explained as the result of an illegitimate allegorical method. This study comes to grips with the particularities of this type of interpretation by using tools from ethnography and literary criticism. By analysing the commentator’s interpretive assumptions and the framework of significances within which the commentaries were produced and read, the author is able to solve a chronic problem in the study of early Christian exegesis. Further, she articulates the social context of the performance of noetic exegesis and its significance for monastic teachers, philosophers, and their audiences.

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BIBLIOGRAPHY Ancient Sources – Editions and Translations: Apophthegmata Patrum (Apophth. Patr.) The Sayings of the Desert Fathers: The Alphabetical Collection. Edited and translated by Benedicta Ward. Preface by Anthony of Sourozh. Cictercian Studies Series, vol.   59. Kalamazoo (MI): Cictercian Publications, 1975. Clement (Clem.) Clement, and Origen. Alexandrian Christianity: Selected Translations of Clement and Origen with Introductions and Notes. Edited and translated by Henry Chadwick, and John Ernest Leonard Oulton. Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 1955. Didymus the Blind (Didym.) Didymus the Blind. Didyme L’Aveugle: Sur la Genèse. Edited and translated by Paul Nautin. Sources Chrétiennes, vol. 233, 244. Paris, 1976, 1978. — Didymos der Blinde: Psalmenkommentar I zu Ps. 20–21. Edited by Louis Doutreleau, A. Gesché, and Michael Gronewald. Papyrologische Texte und Abhandlungen 7. Bonn: Habelt, 1969. — Didymos der Blinde: Psalmenkommentar II zu Ps 22–26:10. Edited by Michael Gronewald. Papyrologische Texte und Abhandlungen 4. Bonn: Habelt, 1968. — Didymos der Blinde: Psalmenkommentar III zu Ps 29–34. Edited by Michael Gronewald. Papyrologische Texte und Abhandlungen 8. Bonn: Habelt, 1969. — Didymos der Blinde: Psalmenkommentar IV zu Ps 35–39. Edited by Michael Gronewald. Payrologische Texte und Abhandlungen 6. Bonn: Habelt, 1969. — Didymos der Blinde: Psalmenkommentar V zu Ps 40–44.4. Edited by Michael Gronewald. Papyrologische Texte und Abhandlungen 12. Bonn: Habelt, 1970. — Didymos der Blinde: Kommentar zum Ekklesiastes I.1. Kap. 1.1–2.14. Edited by Gerhard Binder, and Leo Liesenborghs. Papyrologische Texte und Abhandlungen 25. Bonn: Habelt, 1979. — Didymos der Blinde: Kommentar zum Ekklesiastes I.2. Edited by Gerhard Binder. Papyrologische Texte und...

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