Chapter 5 examines how arguers resolve apparently conflicting passages through argument. First, the problem that textual inconsistency poses for interpreters is considered, followed by a discussion of the three types of disputes that rhetors can have over an apparent inconsistency. Ancient rhetoricians viewed controversies in this stasis as consisting of a double letter versus spirit dispute, and the lines of argument detailed in the previous chapter are available in this stasis. But, as this chapter illustrates, there remain other special lines of reasoning that rhetors can use to resolve evidently conflicting passages. Several of these strategies have been used to reconcile apparently conflicting biblical passages concerning women’s preaching, as exemplified by the chapter’s main example: an epistolary debate over the issue reproduced in Frances Willard’s 1889 Woman in the Pulpit. Disputes in this stasis reveal the logical connections between passages and how these connections can be rhetorically constructed.
Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.