Wednesday, December 12, 2007

SBL in San Diego VIII: New Testament Textual Criticism

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On Monday afternoon at SBL we had a wonderful miscellany of papers. Others who who there may like to make some comments about this session, which followed the ETC Blog lunch. Unfortunately (you might think 'typically'), I had to rush from presenting to the Mark group in the morning, back to my hotel to run through my afternoon presentation, before rushing back for this session. I must also say that as I was the fourth presenter and was waiting patiently/nervously for my own time I wasn't able to pay as close attention to the first three presentations as I would have liked. Also most people used some form of projected material, but the presenters were lined up at the front where we couldn't see the screen.
  1. First off was our very own Tommy Wasserman (Örebro Theological Seminary) on 'Two Verses Plucked From the Fire: Jude 22-23' which was a closely argued treatment of the major problem here. And a very good job he did too.
  2. Second was Matti Myllykoski (University of Helsinki) on 'POxy 4009: Case Closed': this was marred by the fact that he couldn't get his laptop to project anything and had no real back up plan (except for a handout); so we had repeated references to what we could not see on the screen. Seemed to want to argue, using a different reconstruction from Luhrmann, that the back of this definitely was a part of the Gospel of Peter (but I could be wrong, as I was trying to think of what I could do if I couldn't get my laptop to project).
  3. Third was Gerald Donker (PhD student at Macquarie University-Sydney, Australia) on 'The Pauline Epistles in Athanasius: A Contribution to the Alexandrian Text Type': this was a preliminary report on his research on this subject with a lot of complicated statistical stuff which I couldn't understand. Seemed to think that Athanasius in Paul used an Alexandrian text (but only had 44 samples so far). Decent presentation, although too detailed on the statistical front for me (although not for everyone judging by the questions from the floor).
  4. Fourth was Peter M. Head (that is me) on 'Notes on P. Oxy 4497 (P113): The Smallest Portion of the New Testament Ever Identified'. Fortunately the laptop and the projector shook hands and behaved, so I was able to get on with the job at hand. Basically showed how this tiny fragment could be identified with confidence, drew some lessons from that which might be useful in disputed cases of identification and then speculated on what it may have been from (a large double columned Pauline corpus collection).
  5. Fifth was Geert van Oyen (University of Utrecht) and Jan Krans (Vrije Universiteit-Amsterdam) on 'Geert van Oyen, University of Utrecht and Jan Krans, Vrije Universiteit-AmsterdamCodex Boreelianus Revisited: A Fresh Look at Codex F (09) after 160 years '. I really enjoyed this presentation. Perhaps it was relief that mine was over; but they did a great (and occasionally hilarious) team job of their presentation. They had some of the most beautiful and detailed pictures I have ever seen projected. They conveyed a great deal of information in a very clear and entertaining way.

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