Review in: Theology 1998 101: 371Review door: Robert P. Carroll
Gevonden op: http://tjx.sagepub.com/content/101/803/371.full.pdf+html
A Commentary on Jeremiah: Exile and Homecoming,Walter Brueggemann (Eerdmans 1998),
xiv + 502 pp, £19.99 pbk
This is a one-volume version of Brueggemann's two-volume commentary on Jeremiah published in the International Theological Commentary series as To Pluck Up, To Tear Down: A Commentary on the Book of Jeremiah 1-25 (Eerdmans/The Handsel Press: Grand Rapids/Edinburgh, 1988) and To Build, To Plant: A Commentary on Jeremiah 26-52 (Eerdmans/The Handsel Press, 1991), with an additional seven-page introduction on 'Recent Jeremiah Study'. That said, it must also be said that it is good to see Brueggemann's middle-brow, middle-order, middle-price work on Jeremiah appear as a one-volume work. Brueggemann eschews the rigorous historicist approaches of the big guns on Jeremiah (Holladay and McKane) in favour of a theological reading of the book which will serve ecclesiastical readers. Brueggemann is well informed on the scholarly discussion about Jeremiah and builds on the vexed debates of current Jeremiah studies to develop his own take on the book of Jeremiah as 'a constructive proposal of reality that is powered by passionate conviction and that is voiced in cunning, albeit disjunctive artistic form' (p. ix, Brueggemann's emphases). For Brueggemann the book of Jeremiah 'is a rich and open field for venturesome interpretation', but it is not so open as to be endlessly indeterminate. Over against the recent tendency for some scholars to argue for ideological readings of Jeremiah which Brueggemann sees as a negative tool for reading, he offers his own positive reading of the book as canonical (ideological and canonical are two sides of the same coin for him).
Having written a pair of appreciative reviews of the two volumes when they first appeared (SOTS Book List 1990: pp. 52-3; 1993: p. 56), I would only wish to add here my pleasure at having to hand a smart one-volume paperback of Brueggemann's commentary on Jeremiah. It forms a nice balance to the much more philologically orientated work of Holladay and McKane and will provide readers who are interested in a theological reading of the book of Jeremiah with such a corrective to what has at times been missing in those erudite works.
Robert P. Carroll
University of Glasgow