Archive for September 23rd, 2011

NOTE: Thus we begin the series I talked about several weeks ago.

I.                    Definition of Genre

a.       Genre is from a French word that means “kind”

b.      Genre is synonymous with literary forms.

c.       Genre is the type of literature of a given literary piece.

d.      A genre has three elements:

i.      Structure

1.      This concern with the order of words, phrases, sentences and paragraphs of the text.

2.      Line lengths is also an element of a text’s structure

ii.      Content

1.      What is the topic or subject of the given text?

iii.      Function

1.      What purpose does the particular excerpt of the text serve?

II.                 Does Genres exist?

a.       Session two will go over the importance of genre in biblical interpretation.

i.      But this would be meaningless if it can be established do genre does not exist.  It would be just speculations and a waste of time.

ii.      Are there such things as Genre?

b.      The “Transcendental” Argument for the existence of literary genre

i.      Genre does exist because genre is used by God when He wrote the Bible.

ii.      Genre can be so obvious that many people are not conscious of it when they are reading.

1.      A trip to the library

a.       Literatures are arranged according to its kind (genre).

i.      Children’s story

ii.      Government documents

iii.      Biographies

iv.      Action thrillers

v.      Romance novels

vi.      Math text books

vii.      Journal on literary forms

b.      Some of the genre might overlap, but that does not mean that there are not kinds of literature!

2.      Remembering the fact that genre can be so obvious that one might not be conscious is crucial later on as sometimes people can identify genres almost instantly and yet struggle with identifying the factors of what makes the literature in question is the genre that it is.

iii.      The impossibility of the contrary: There is no such thing as a ‘genre-less’ literature

1.      Objection: A groceries’ list is an example of a genre-less literature.

a.       Yet, the groceries list is a genre itself, that of a groceries list!

i.      Groceries list is still a kind of writing

ii.      Groceries list also has the three element of a genre

1.      Structure- Typically, there is one subject per line, and various lines.

2.      Content- The words are all names of food or household items that is preceded or followed by a number (example: 3 burgers), or a unit of measurements (2 milk gallons).

3.      Function- The items are listed so that one remembers what to get.

iii.      If there is no genre, how does the genre skeptic husband know that his wife has left the groceries list on the table along with other paper?  Or how can her scolding wife help her husband find it?

III.               Exercise in identifying genre: Excerpts from the newspaper

Can you identify what “part” or genre of the Newpaper the following excerpts are?  Give your reasons why.

a.      Sample 1:

Your editorial claims to support separation of church and state, but your stated position is contrary to the principle.
To argue that the wall of separation is “porous enough” to allow any branch of government to declare a day of prayer is to promote an exception that swallows the entire rule. For a governor to declare such a day is for the state to officially endorse prayer.
This is not a neutral act. It’s one thing for elected public officials to declare personal faith. It’s quite another to issue formal prayer-endorsing proclamations on behalf of government — in this case, the state of
It sends a message that nonbelievers are lesser in the eyes of the political community than those who believe in a supernatural being.
Religious people in this country can pray whenever they want. They don’t need government proclamations to worship.

Edward Tabash
Beverly Hills

The writer is chair of the national legal committee of the Americans United for Separation of Church and State.[2]

b.      Sample 2:

Israeli warplanes and helicopters bombarded military targets across the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip on Saturday, retaliating for Palestinian rocket fire into Israel with one of the deadliest assaults in the history of the 60-year conflict.
As Palestinian officials put the death toll at 230 and said many were unarmed civilians, the scale of the bloodshed unsettled the
Middle East and alarmed world leaders involved in Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts.[3]

c.       Sample 3:

They came, they saw, for once they didn’t conquer.
By the time the Celtics arrived last week, the Lakers had worked themselves into such a state of indignation, complaints included not only Boston fans’ rocking their bus in the playoffs, but Ray Allen’s ringing insult as he accepted the team’s ESPY at the summer awards show here:

“Another win in L.A!”[4]

IV.              Excerpt in identifying genre: Other literatures

a.       List what are some ways one can identify a poem?

b.      List what are some ways one can identify a junk mail or an email spam?

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