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Title: 'Today' in Deuteronomy
Subtitle: A Narrative Metalepsis
Author(s): SONNET, Jean-Pierre
Journal: Biblica
Volume: 101    Issue: 4   Date: 2020   
Pages: 498-518
DOI: 10.2143/BIB.101.4.3289117

Abstract :
In its narrative, rhetorical, and pragmatic aspects, the trajectory of the deictic expression 'today' in Deuteronomy reveals what the book is all about: a progressive merging of represented and representing time (and communication). Or, to use the category coined by Gérard Genette, it is a 'metalepsis', 'the transgression of a line of demarcation that authors usually do not touch, namely the ‘shifting but sacred frontier between two worlds, the world in which one tells, the world of which one tells’' (Dorrit Cohn). Purposeful uses of the expression by Moses, in past, present, and future references and by the narrator conjointly build Deuteronomy’s climactic moment, 'today', as the urgent time of decision.

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