Thursday, August 25, 2005

Goodbye to the Grammatical Historical Method!

I suppose that I can put my Super Mark V Objective Exegesis 4000 machine in the back of the closet, next to my bellbottoms, Rubik's Cube, tapered jeans, Men Without Hats 45rpm collection, and my Colecovision [with Buck Rogers cartridge still plugged in!].

Why? Well, thanks to modern enlightened arguments, I have now renounced my support for the grammatical-historical method. Let's illustrate the new PP hermeneutic on the following sentence:

The grammatical-historical method is an unsatisfactory method for understanding the Biblical texts in the sense that one either gets interpretations contrary to what the text is saying, or, by virtue of the GHM, one misses out on other truths that are there in the text.

Interpretation[s] under the new PP hermeneutic:

(1) I like butterflies, and, not only that, but bunny-rabbits hopping through sunlit meadows make me happy as well.

(2) Peel back foil to expose tater tots, let sit for 20 minutes at 375 degrees.

(3) The white male patriarchal heterosexist hegemony must be overthrown! Revolution now!

(4) The number "11" is a breathtaking two-digit integer with a terminal "1." But, on the other hand, all prime numbers are pleasant numbers as well, though the principle of "prime" is a construct of dead white males used to oppress women and people of color. [See (3).]

Perhaps in a few centuries, a group of people will get together and decide that our example statement above is not only confined to its authorial intent, but will also prooftext it as stating

(5) The Great Pumpkin is the one true Pumpkin, a jealous Pumpkin, a stern Pumpkin, and those who enter the Pumpkin Patch with an impure heart are anathema.

(6) Gary Numan should've stopped with Telekon instead of leaving New Wave and going into his "New Romantic" phase.

And then later, we can in turn reinterpret (5) and (6) in the context of Living Tradition to mean

(7) There are 17 persons in the Trinity, but 5 of them fail to recycle their soda cans, revealing an imperfection in the Godhead.

We can also allegorize or symbolize in the sample statement above: when we read the words grammatical-historical method we may think "Mayor McCheese;" we triumphantly view unacceptable method as a stand-in for "Grimace," and the words interpretations contrary to the text are a merely symbolic usage for "Hamburglar." We may thus interpret the text as stating that Mayor McCheese, Grimace, and the Hamburglar are tools of the white male patriarchal heterosexist capitalist hegemony, and the text, through jouissance and the liberating effects of Derrida's Of Grammatology, presents this to the careful reader who has thrown away the confining bourgeois chains of words, context, authorial intent, and the like.

On a personal note: If I read between the lines of the text, I can also find a very clever proof-by-contradiction to Fermat's Last Theorem too. But we can debate these finer points of interpretation some other time when I'm not just sticking to the basics of my new hermeneutic.

[Typed on the office computer! New home computer coming soon! Hooray!]

4 Comments:

Blogger centuri0n said...

You have a Mark V? Geez -- I was still using my old LED Mark III.

I better ask the wife if I can upgrade.

Friday, August 26, 2005 8:14:00 AM  
Blogger Pedantic Protestant said...

Well, the Mark V will soon be obsolete. The Mark VI is coming out soon, and besides being able to abstract and objectively interpret propositions, it also allows you to directly beam propositions to/between disembodied minds too, unlike the earlier models. Also, it improves on the philosophical-assumption-removing of the Mark V, so that one can approach exegesis with an even clearer assumption-free mind.

The price tag is rather steep though, so I'm saving up presently.

Rumor has it that Eric Svendsen is one of the beta-testers for the Mark VI. He'll never admit it, but I have my suspicions.

Friday, August 26, 2005 1:01:00 PM  
Blogger centuri0n said...

We can see the down-side of beaming between minds in the first Scooby Doo movie. I'm going to keep my Mark III on the desktop until I see the Mark VI in action.

Friday, August 26, 2005 4:48:00 PM  
Blogger Pedantic Protestant said...

There's no shame in owning and using a Mark III, Frank. Either way, you'll be able to identify and objectify propositions, resulting in your being able to let your inner logocentrist run free and uninhibited.

Much of it is aesthetic --- the Mark III has wood-panelling just as did the Atari 2600 [God help me --- another early 80's reference]. The Mark V is much sleeker and sexier. The Mark VI apparently looks something like and IPod.

Friday, August 26, 2005 6:15:00 PM  

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