Thursday, September 19, 2013

Q is for . . . . Q and Q reading Q

We reached the stage of my New Testament Intro class today when we were looking at the question of Q.  It's tough to teach because one has to explain to puzzled students why Q is a credible theory, and why it is the dominant one in the field.  Luckily for me, I have an "out" in that I am sure there never was a Q, and I can explain why the standard arguments for its existence are problematic.

I sometimes wonder how far famous fictional Qs like Desmond Llewelyn's Q in James Bond or John de Lancie's Q in Star Trek: The Next Generation make our Q feel rather exotic.  Perhaps it's a problem for the Q theorists because the most famous Qs are fictional.  Perhaps it's a help to them because it gives their hypothetical source a certain frisson.

Anyway, I love this cartoon in which those two famous Qs read the British magazine Q.  It would be even better if they were reading the Critical Edition of Q, but you can't have everything.  The cartoon dates back to 2010, from Neil Cameron's excellent A-Z of Awesomeness, previously mentioned here.

7 comments:

Jeff said...

Time to Photoshop Q and Q reading _The Case Against Q_!

Richard Budelberger said...

Dr Goodacre, where can we read a concise abstract of your arguments against the evidence of Q ? (Speaking for myself, I’m a quasi-Rolland-ist (Father Philippe Rolland) : Mark wrote his Gospel merging the Hellenic and Pauline Gospels – free translations of the Jerusalem Gospel – with some own informations, Matthew from HG and Q and soi, Marcion from PG and Q and soi, Luke falsifying Marcion… And Jesus has nothing to do with Judaism. That’s why I say « quasi »…)

Mark Goodacre said...

Ah, yes; who would like to take on that job, Jeff?

Mark Goodacre said...

Thanks, Richard. There are a few places. The easiest to access is my little book, The Synoptic Problem: A Way through the Maze, available at http://archive.org/details/synopticproblemw00good

Richard Budelberger said...

« archive.org/ » ?!… Who am I to read a copyrighted book of a living (I hope he is) Author for free ? I can’t accept that.

Thank you, Dr Goodacre. I’ll send you a DM (¹) by Twitter…

1. For unGeeks only : DM = Direct Message…

Ian Paul said...

This is so funny. There must be a sociological study to be done on why Q is so often used for the mysterious. Is it because the letter was dumped on us by the Normans in 1066 when we already had the perfectly good C?

MattGZat said...

Dr. Goodacre,
Thanks for access to your work. Do you see 'Q' as geriatric and failing or as the proverbial Phoenix? I have invested in Hermeneia and found the cartoon quite humorous. Hermeneia has four (4) volumes dealing with Q: The Critical Edition of Q: Synopsis including the Gospels of Matthew and Luke and Thomas with English with English Translations of Q and Thomas; The Critical Edition of Q: Synopsis including the Gospels of Matthew and Luke and Thomas with German Translations of Q and Thomas
The Critical Edition of Q: Synopsis including the Gospels of Matthew and Luke and Thomas with French Translations of Q and Thomas
The Critical Edition of Q: Q (Unformatted Greek Text) from The Critical Edition of Q. The cartoon parodies 'of the writing of many books there is no end' and brings to mind Kodachrome lyrics: 'when I think back to all the xrap I learned in high school, college, graduate school, seminary ....
Blessings to you and your academic ventures