ABSTRACT

One productive avenue for locating the best practices for integrating historical and theological exegesis lies along the path of “ascriptive realism,” a shorthand label for a mode of reading informed above all by Hans Frei’s work on Scripture as realistic and history-like narrative. Rather than pursue a full theoretical account of ascriptive realism, I characterize it in broad terms, in relation to concerns over the character of the reader and of the nature of the reality to which the text attests, and then explore a case study. The case study is occupied with what may be called “the quest of the historical Daniel,” and its complex relationship to the practices of scriptural interpretation. Postcolonial readings of Daniel are canvassed for examples of how historical detail may be turned to broader interpretative aims. The goal is to illustrate the kind of framework within which one might locate the best practices for integrating historical and theological exegesis: as a single practice that is irreducibly historical, irreducibly theological, and beholden to informed imaginative inquiry from a range of subdisciplinary perspectives.

You do not currently have access to this content.