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Title: 'It was not the Season for Figs'
Subtitle: Aesthetic Absurdity in Mark's Intercalations
Author(s): PROCTOR, Mark A.
Journal: Biblica
Volume: 98    Issue: 4   Date: 2017   
Pages: 558-581
DOI: 10.2143/BIB.98.4.3265686

Abstract :
A signature feature of the Second Evangelist’s narrative style involves the purposive intertwining of two stories for the sake of dramatic effect. This paper investigates the Evangelist’s consistent use of what I term 'absurdity' as a literary technique for enhancing the aesthetic value of his intercalations. Put simply, Jesus or another character in a Markan 'sandwich' will routinely say or do something inexplicable or silly so as to startle, surprise, or confuse not only the participants in the stories but sometimes even Mark’s readers. Mark’s intercalations variously profit from the Evangelist’s inclusion of what really constitute nonsensical sayings and/or actions.

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