Posted: May 07, 2012 5:44 pm
by IgnorantiaNescia
Cito di Pense wrote:
IgnorantiaNescia wrote:

What is exactly circular about noting where and how words are written? As for "defending tradition", I've no interest in doing that. But to ignore all evidence is to open the door wide for inane speculation. Now your reply could imply you think research is irrelevant, but you haven't replied directly so far. So, I ask again:

Do you think lexicographical research is relevant when suggesting novel readings for words? If so, do you think it is odd that Richard Carrier neglected to do such research?

I thought your interest was in the meanings of the words themselves. Now you're saying 'context' is important. Welcome to the world of textual criticism. I'm still asking you how expertise in philology is decided.

Yes, people read and read and read, and they can read about where and how words were written, but I am seriously asking you for the criteria for expertise in deciding how words were written.

You understand that I am pointing to the circularity of insisting that academic philologists in one field are somehow more expert than academic philologists in another. Are you not simply defending the concept of academic fiefdoms in which use is made of philology?

For all we know, Richard Carrier may actually have read more words than Bart Ehrman, and done more philology, or they've read about the same quantity of words, and discussed the words philologically with other philologists. How do you decide? You read what Ehrman writes, and it is not obvious he's brain-farting the philological equivalent of an aria from some opera by Mozart.

The meaning of a word can only be decided by looking at its context. Without any doubt you know there are words with multiple meanings and that words can be used non-literally. Good luck establishing what is meant without the context.

The issue is not that the Greek lexicography of ancient historians is irrelevant compared to that of NT scholars (and the fields are obviously not as demarcated as you imply, though there clearly is specialisation), but whether interpretations should be based on research and thus evidence, or whether it shouldn't.

Richard Carrier has described lexicographical research as counterfactual, so that clearly indicates he hasn't done quantitative research on "brother of the Lord. Such research can not credibly be called merely "reading words", it is actually rather time-consuming. But if you insist on questioning such research, what alternative method would you suggest?