A Modern Rendering of the Psalms
The Psalms, from the Jewish and Christian Bibles is one of the key texts of world literature. However, there are several impediments for most readers who approach this work, including archaic language translations that do not resonate with contemporary English speakers. The existing translated prosody is also rather stuffy. This book offers a compact apparatus for reading this text which includes discussion of manuscript sources, description of places and events alluded to, which are often beyond the ken of ordinary readers, and provides a practical “content-oriented index”, which allows the inquirer to go directly to psalms that address particular practical problems in living-in-the-world, and a select bibliography of current material for further study. These devices will assist the student and the general reader who wish to know more as they explore this historically significant text.
Michael Boylan, PhD, is an internationally recognized figure in philosophy who has written 24 books in philosophy, along with 135 published essays. He has also published 12 philosophical novels and two books of poetry. He was invited as a poet to give a solo evening poetry reading at the United States Library of Congress, and has been part of national policy committees in the USA and a participant in national think tanks such as the Brookings Institution and the Center for American Progress. His philosophy publications include the books Natural Human Rights: A Theory, The Origins of Ancient Greek Science: Blood—A Philosophical Study, and Fictive Narrative Philosophy: How Fiction can Act as Philosophy.
“These fresh translations of the Psalms by Michael Boylan are beautiful jewels for every reader to enjoy. They carry enough of the familiar tones and cadences of previous interpretations so those familiar with them can easily recognize their favorites, and yet appreciate them in some new ways. Boylan offers just enough contemporary language and phrasing to awaken the mind and spirit in order to appreciate their timely messages. The titles he assigns to each Psalm are particularly creative and inviting. These readings of the psalms will be appreciated by worship leaders as they offer them for their communities of faith. They will be an invaluable resource for pastoral caregivers to share with those facing a variety of situations. Teachers of the Bible will find them valuable as they introduce the Psalms to new readers, as well as seasoned students exploring them for deeper meaning. And, perhaps more importantly, they will enrich personal reflections through their evocative and accessible prose.”
Dr Sharon G. Thornton, PhD
Professor Emerita of Pastoral Theology, Andover Newton Theological School, USA
“Michael Boylan’s A Modern Rendering of the Psalms exemplifies how I think classical texts should be interpreted. The interpreter begins with our current circumstances, from that position they study the text, and then render the text to enlighten our understanding of our situation. When you read “God has your back,” you know Boylan’s translations are for us in our circumstances. It doesn’t get better than this. If you already know the Psalms, Boylan’s work will be surprising and enjoyable. If you don’t know them, here is a delightful way to meet them.”
Formerly of the University of San Francisco
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