Discourse Features of New Testament Greek: A Coursebook on the Information Structure of New Testament Greek

Levinsohn, Stephen H

Dr. Levinsohn, with expertise in both New Testament Greek and discourse analysis, wrote this coursebook for use in classroom lectures and discussion groups, as well as for self-instruction. He draws on his research and his experience in seminars, teach-ins, and courses as he describes discourse features that he and other researchers have studied in depth.

For maximum benefit, students should already have some basic familiarity with discourse analysis and some knowledge of Koiné Greek. They do not need extensive knowledge of Greek vocabulary, but do need the ability to identify the case of a noun, the tense-aspect of a verb, and to distinguish participial, relative, and main clauses.

The seventeen chapters cover topics such as constituent order, sentence conjunctions, patterns of reference, back grounding and highlighting, and reporting conversations. Discourse features are illustrated from passages of the New Testament. Most sections include review questions to assist the student in applying the principles.

About the Author

Stephen Levinsohn has a doctorate in Linguistic Science from the University of Reading, England. He is an International Linguistics Consultant with SIL International, did fieldwork in Colombia from 1968 to 1998 with the Inga (Quechuan) people, and directs linguistic and "Discourse for Translation" workshops in different parts of West Africa and Latin America.

Table of Contents:


Part I: Constituent Order

  1. Coherence and Discontinuities
  2. Points of Departure
  3. Constituent Order in the Comment
  4. More on Constituent Order

Part II: Sentence Conjunctions

  1. Kai and Ae in Narrative
  2. Tote, Non-Conjunctive Kai, and Te Solitarium
  3. Thematic Development in Non-Narrative Text

Part III: Patterns of Reference

  1. Participant Reference
  2. The Article with Substantives

Part IV: Backgrounding and Highlighting Devices

  1. Backgrounding of Sentences
  2. Backgrounding Within Sentences
  3. Highlighting and the Historical Present

Part V: The Reporting of Conversation

  1. The Default Strategy for Reporting Conversations
  2. More on Reported Conversations in the Synoptic Gospels and Acts
  3. Reported Conversations in John’s Gospel
  4. Three Ways of Reporting Speech

Part VI: Boundary Features

Suggested Answers to Illustrative Passages
Index of Scripture References
Index of Topics

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Second Edition
xi, 316 pages
Discourse structure
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