Transient Apostle

Paul, Travel, and the Rhetoric of Empire

Timothy Luckritz Marquis

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April 30, 2013
216 pages, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4
ISBN: 9780300187144
Cloth

In a significant reevaluation of Paul’s place in the early Christian story, Timothy Luckritz Marquis explores the theme of travel in the apostle’s correspondence. He casts Paul’s rhetorical strategies against the background of Augustus’s age, when Rome’s wealth depended on conquests abroad, the international commerce they facilitated, and the incursion of foreign customs and peoples they brought about. In so doing, Luckritz Marquis provides an explanation for how Paul created, maintained, and expanded his local communities in the larger, international Jesus movement and shows how Paul was a product of the material forces of his day.

“This is the single most sophisticated book on Paul to be written within the paradigms of contemporary critical thought. By integrating its extensive, erudite, and compelling citations of the Greco-Roman world in which Paul was writing with post-colonial and post-Marxist thinking, it makes real progress in understanding Paul’s letters.”—Daniel Boyarin

Timothy Luckritz Marquis is assistant professor of New Testament at Moravian Theological Seminary. He lives in Bethlehem, PA.

“This is the single most sophisticated book on Paul to be written within the paradigms of contemporary critical thought. By integrating its extensive, erudite, and compelling citations of the Greco-Roman world in which Paul was writing with post-colonial and post-Marxist thinking, it makes real progress in understanding Paul’s letters.”—Daniel Boyarin, University of California, Berkeley

“This brilliant and beautifully written book masterfully shows how Paul’s rhetoric about himself as a travelling apostle created the new social movement we call “Christianity.” Through his repeated talk about surviving the dangers of ancient travel, Paul exemplified how power shines forth in weakness, even as Christ’s cross points to the glorious resurrection. An illuminating must-read for all interested in Paul and empire.”—Karen L. King, Harvard Divinity School

"This ambitious, well-researched and illuminating study makes a significant and original contribution to the study of Paul and of first-century socio-historical and rhetorical contexts pertinent to the exploration of the New Testament. Impressively fluent with ancient sources and secondary literature, Luckritz Marquis analyzes Paul's discursive strategies with remarkable linguistic and conceptual proficiency."—Brigitte Kahl, Union Theological Seminary

“Timothy Luckritz Marquis makes a compelling intervention in Pauline studies, bringing to light the full rhetorical complexity of the apostle’s self-presentation in 2 Corinthians as an itinerant, both cosmopolitan and marginalized.  Erudite, layered, and theoretically sophisticated, The Transient Apostle is original in its approach and persuasive in its conclusions.”—Benjamin H. Dunning, author of Aliens and Sojourners: Self as Other in Early Christianity.

"A lucid and illuminating discussion of Paul’s prominent use of travel motifs and their role in the apostle’s self-depiction and rhetorical strategy.  Luckritz Marquis deftly situates Paul’s itinerancy and his variegated travel rhetoric within the enhanced physical mobility of the Roman empire."— John T. Fitzgerald, University of Notre Dame

"This excellent monograph, a revised Yale dissertation, advances our understanding of the apostle Paul’s self-presentation as a traveler in the Roman world. . . . Overall praise [for] this wonderfully detailed study of Paul. It deserves attention from classicists and ancient historians interested in the language and imagery of wandering in the topography and performance of Greco-Roman culture. Look forward to reading more good work from this promising scholar."—J. Albert Harrill, Bryn Mawr Classical Review

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