Item description for The Text of the New Testament: An Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism by Kurt Aland & Barbara Aland...
Overview The definitive introduction to New Testament textual criticism is now revised and enlarged! The Alands compare the major editions of the New Testament, describe and analyze the Greek manuscripts in detail, and discuss the value of early versions. Particularly noteworthy are their introduction to the use of modern editions of the Greek New Testament and their greater sensitivity to differing viewpoints. Two new supplementary essays are included in addition to revised plates, tables, and charts.
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Studio: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.24" Width: 6.28" Height: 0.99" Weight: 1.25 lbs.
Release Date Jun 1, 2000
Publisher Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
ISBN 0802840981 ISBN13 9780802840981
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More About Kurt Aland & Barbara Aland
Kurt Aland (1915-1994) was professor of Church History and New Testament Textual Criticism at Muenster (Germany), where he founded the Institute for New Testament Textual Research. He served as co-editor of Eberhard and Erwin Nestle's Novum Testamentum graece and was a member of the editorial committee of the Greek New Testament. Aland and his wife coauthored one of the standard introductions to New Testament textual criticism, and he edited the most widely used New Testament text of the present period.
Reviews - What do customers think about The Text of the New Testament an Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism?
A Good Source, But A Source With An Agenda Jan 2, 2007
This book is a very good compendium of knowledge regarding what the biblical manuscripts contain. It is authored by the late Kurt Aland and his wife, Barbara, and translated from German into English by Errol Rhodes.
It is a complete listing of the manuscripts of the Greek New Testament. The listing is good as well as the critiques offered of some of the shortcomings in the reasoned eclectic approach. It is good - with one exception - at the presentation of competing theories.
The one exception, however, is conspicuous - the flip dismissal of the Majority Text. While I am not an MT guy, at least a minimal refutation of the view should be presented as opposed to what sounds like, "We're right, they're wrong, and that's that."
Again - a good guide to the NT manuscripts. Just watch the anti-Byzantine bias.
Four current approaches for New Testament Textual Criticism Feb 2, 2006
The material below is from David A. Black's New Testament Textual Criticism: A Concise Guide, 1994, Baker Books: Grand Rapids (MI), pp. 36-39.
------------------------------------------ Today, four approaches to textual criticism can be seen among New Testament scholars. Each of the four current approaches may be identified with individual scholars. For the sake of convenience, these approaches may be called Radical Eclecticism, Reasoned Eclecticism, Reasoned Conservatism, and Radical Conservatism. The term "eclectic" means that the scholar tends to view each textual variant on its own merits instead of blindly following one manuscript or group of manuscripts. The term "conservative" is used here to refer to a generally high view of the traditional Byzantine text type and/or the Textus Receptus.
A. Radical Eclecticism (G. D. Kilpatrick, J. K. Elliott)
Radical Eclecticism holds to what may be called a purely eclectic text. This approach prefers a text based solely on internal evidence. Adherents of this view argue that since the history of the New Testament text is untraceable, none of the text types carries any weight. Hence the reading of any manuscript may be original, since no manuscript or group of manuscripts is "best". An eclectic scholar will thus choose the reading that commends itself as best fitting the context, whether in style or thought. This view, held primarily by a minority of British scholars, has been criticized for ignoring the value and importance of the external evidence, particularly the Greek manuscripts.
B. Reasoned Eclecticism (B. M. Metzger, K. Aland)
Reasoned Eclecticism holds that the text of the New Testament is to be based on both internal and external evidence, without a preference for any particular manuscript or text type. This view of the text is represented in the Nestle-Aland and United Bible Societies' Greek New Testaments. This approach often represents a predilection for manuscripts of the Alexandrian text type. This preference is based largely on Westcott and Hort's theory that the Byzantine text is a conflation of the Alexandrian and Western texts, and that the superiority of the Alexandrian text over the Western text can be shown through internal evidence. This approach has occasionally been criticized for producing a new "Textus Receptus" - a canonized form of the New Testament text.
C. Reasoned Conservatism (H. A. Sturz)
What might be called Reasoned Conservatism holds that each of the main text types is equally early and independent, going back separately into the second century. Like Reasoned Eclecticism, Reasoned Conservatism sees both internal and external evidence as useful. However; unlike Reasoned Eclecticism, which tends to follow the Alexandrian text, Reasoned Conservatism insists that no single text type can be preferred over all others, and instead emphasizes the geographical distribution of the text types. Scholars who hold to his view argue that the Byzantine text is older than the age of the earliest Byzantine manuscript (fifth century). For example, Byzantine readings once thought to be late have been found in early Egyptian papyri. Therefore, adherents of this view consider the Byzantine text type to be an early and independent witness to the text of the New Testament. They further believe that the reading that is the consensus of the majority of text types is most representative of the autographs. Reasoned Conservatism has been criticized for restoring the Byzantine text (which many feel to be "corrupt") to a place of usefulness.
D. Radical Conservatism (Z. Hodges, A. Farstad)
Finally, the approach that may be called Radical Conservatism holds that the Byzantine text type most closely approximates the original text of the New Testament. Scholars who hold to this view prefer the reading of the majority of manuscripts, which are, of course, mainly Byzantine. Several of these scholars have produced the New King James Version, which is based on the Textus Receptus, thus perpetuating the tradition begun by William Tyndale in 1525 and continued in King James Version of 1611. This approach has been criticized for being too mechanical and for ignoring the fact that manuscripts must be weighed and not just counted. For example, if ten manuscripts are copies of a single parent manuscript, then an error appearing in the parent will appear ten times in ten copies. But these ten copies are equal to a single authority, not to ten. -----------------------------------------------
I personally trust B. M. Metzger, K. Aland and co. (I.S)
Standard Text on NT Textual Criticism Jul 15, 2005
This is a must read for anyone interested in NT Textual Criticism. It is a standard text with Bruce Metzger's, Text of the New Testament. Highly recommended. It is a translation from German, but is quite readable.
Important for the Greek NT student Dec 31, 2002
This book sets the scene for the New Testament text, its transmission and the extant manuscripts. The book is not quite as interesting a read as Metzger's book which is more readable. However this book benefits in a much higher level of detail regarding certain aspects of the mss, as well as giving a very detailed introduction to the use of the aparatus of the NA26 and UBS3 Greek New Testaments, which is no doubt essential for someone who desires to understand these in every detail. It also deals in much more detail with other modern editions of the Greek New Testament, their pros and cons.
In response to the other commentators and the Alexandrian texts. It is not really in the scope of this book or Metzger's to really prove their opinions of various manuscripts and their individual value. That really becomes clear when the entire New Testament tradition is studied as a whole and entails considerable work. Those criticizing Aland and Metzger et. al. in my experience do so from a position of ignorance as armchair critics.
An Advertisement for their Greek Text Aug 31, 2002
I bought this book many years ago and read it through. I was quite disappointed by the treatment of textual criticism given. The book reads like an advertisement for the critical texts that they have put out. It did not provide solid scholarly arguments to support their choice of manuscripts and methodology in making their textual evaluations. Many papyri are listed and classified according to their accuracy but no explanation or justification for the supposed authority of these texts are supplied - apparantly you're just supposed to believe the Alands and not question it any further. This book left me the impression that modern critical textual scholarship is an arbitrary and subjective endeavor lacking firm, testable scientific premises and is driven rather by personal preference and prejudice.