Biblical criticism is the scholarly "study and investigation of biblical writings that seeks to make discerning judgments about these writings." Viewing biblical texts as having human rather than supernatural origins, it asks when and where a particular text originated; how, why, by whom, for whom, and in what circumstances it was produced; what influences were at work in its production; what sources were used in its composition; and what message it was intended to convey. It will vary slightly depending on whether the focus is on the Old Testament, the letters of New Testament or the Canonical gospels. It also plays an important role in the quest for a Historical Jesus.
It also addresses the physical text, including the meaning of the words and the way in which they are used, its preservation, history and integrity. Biblical criticism draws upon a wide range of scholarly disciplines including archaeology, anthropology, folklore, linguistics, Oral Tradition studies, and historical and religious studies.
Famous quotes containing the word criticism:
“It is ... pathetic to observe the complete lack of imagination on the part of certain employers and men and women of the upper-income levels, equally devoid of experience, equally glib with their criticism ... directed against workers, labor leaders, and other villains and personal devils who are the objects of their dart-throwing. Who doesnt know the wealthy woman who fulminates against the idle workers who just wont get out and hunt jobs?”
—Mary Barnett Gilson (1877?)