PhD Candidate – Hebrew Bible
Midland, Texas, USA
MA – Religion – Duke University
BA – Language & Linguistics – Baylor University
I Speak My Work to the King: A Speech-Act Theory of Biblical Poetry
Supervised by Prof. Kristin DeTroyer
Matthew is seeking to resolve a problem raised by James Kugel in the definition of biblical poetry. Using a version of J.L. Austin’s theory of speech-acts, read through the lens of the work of Paul Grice, he is able to define “poetry” as a set of speech-acts with identifiable constants. In addition to improving the definition of “poetry” in the Hebrew Bible, this approach gives the reader tools for interpreting difficult or liminal texts in both prose and poetry.
Matthew lives in St. Andrews with his wife, a violin teacher, and their new-born son. They are interested in education reform Benedictine spirituality, and have recently formed the Fellowship of St. Columbanus with several colleagues in order to discuss and further the goals of reform in Catholic education.