The Jesus Memoirs

A pioneering social-scientific approach to Mark’s Gospel was found in Howard Clark Kee’s Community of the New Age: Studies in Mark’s Gospel (Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 1977). Although he accepted the form critical view that there was no exact analogue for Mark’s Gospel among the ancient literature and that Mark created a new genre for the church (17-30), Kee found some parallels to apocalyptic texts like the book of Daniel (65).  When a minority group is reduced to political impotence through social ostracism or political oppression, they may question their place in the social order and long for the transformation of society to accord with what the group understanding of the divine will (cf. Talcott Parsons on the intellectualism of the non-privileged group). Apocalyptic thought expects that the present historical crisis will be overcome by divine victory over evil forces, often leads to a group’s rethinking of interpersonal social bonds or older traditions…

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