Form Criticism

The German theologian Hermann Gunkel (1862-1932) first developed Formgechichte in an attempt to establish fixed literary patterns.  These patterns then could go behind the present text to help establish the meaning and significance of the literary pattern in its original context.  However, the meaning of form criticism has become fluid.  The study of the biblical texts using form criticism has revealed a marvelous multiplicity of literary styles, forms, and methods used in the Bible.

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