Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Pauline style

Over on his Facebook wall, Jeremy Pierce recently defended the Pauline authorship of the Pastorals. One of Jeremy’s arguments is that it’s not unusual for a writer’s style to change over time, to develop as he ages.

In that regard, the evolution of John Ruskin’s prose style provides a concrete comparison. For instance:

1 comment:

  1. I don't have Facebook (anymore), so perhaps Pierce has covered this already.

    There's also the question of coherency and contingency. Some critics seem to forget that it's completely compatible with single authorship for an author's style to significantly change depending on the needs and composition of the audience.

    For example, Paul, who was rhetorically trained, would have shifted his styles depending on the audience(s), its disposition(s) toward him, and the purpose(s) of his letter. Far from being unexpected, such rhetorical postures were discussed in some of the contemporary rhetorical manuals.