Defamiliarizing preaching : a homiletical investigation into the renewal of preaching in the South Korean context

Lee, Seungwoo (2016-11-23)

Thesis (PhD)--Stellenbosch University, 2016.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The preaching ministry has been facing the crisis of boredom and banality in sermons. Although homiletics scholars have tried to overcome this problem, especially scholars who lean towards the New Homiletics, the problem of boring preaching seems to remain. Having this in mind, the researcher has tried to find a way towards the renewal and refreshing of preaching, especially in the Korean church context, through overcoming and complementing the limitations of the New Homiletics. The research has resulted in presenting “defamiliarization”, the theory of Russian Formalism, as a solution to the problem. Boredom resulting from preaching occurs for several reasons. In this dissertation, familiarity and repetition are presented as among these reasons. In the preaching context as a long-term ministry, familiarity and repetition are structurally incurred. It means that the situation is as follows: a preacher delivers a sermon to the congregation based on the Bible text – from just one textbook – for a long time. In other words, it is the same preacher, the same hearers and the same text. In addition, the Bible presents similar stories, as in the Gospels. And many preachers have favourite parts in the Bible from which they preach. In these contexts, occurrence of familiarity and repetition cannot be avoided. Therefore, to refresh and make the sermon ‘strange’ is an essential need. Defamiliarization may provide a good method. To clearly apply defamiliarization to preaching, the researcher investigated the notion of “impeding perception” and tried to find various ways to apply defamiliarization in preaching, with the focus on both the device and the content of preaching. The reason was the need to overcome and complement limitations and weak points identified in both the New Homiletics theory and in Russian Formalism. The suggestion is that a preacher who wants to refresh preaching to escape the problems of boring preaching should not focus on aspects of techniques for defamiliarization only, but should also attend to aspects of the content of preaching. In addition, the preacher would need to alternate various means to achieve the effect of impeding perception to prevent the methods he uses from also becoming familiar to the congregation through repeated use. In this sense, the essential aim of preachers who seek to refresh preaching should be to focus on the story of the Bible, which is strange and mysterious in itself, while using the methods of defamiliarization.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die bediening ervaar 'n krisis van verveling en banaliteit in preke. Hoewel kundiges van die homilektiek, veral kundiges wat die Nuwe Homiletiek ondersteun, probeer het om hierdie probleem te oorkom, blyk dit dat die probleem van vervelige prediking voortduur. Met dit in gedagte, het die navorser probeer om veral in die Koreaanse kerkkonteks 'n weg na die hernuwing en verfrissing van prediking te vind, deur die oorbrugging en aanvulling van die beperkinge van die Nuwe Homiletiek. Die navorsing het daartoe gelei dat “defamiliarization” – onvertroudmaking –, die teorie van die Russiese Formalisme, as 'n oplossing vir die probleem voorgestel word. Verveeldheid as gevolg van prediking kom om verskeie redes na vore. In hierdie verhandeling word oorbekendheid en herhaling as redes aangevoer. In die konteks van prediking as 'n langtermynbediening, is bekendheid en herhaling struktureel ingewortel. Dit dui op die volgende situasie: 'n prediker lewer 'n preek vir die gemeente wat op die Bybelteks gebaseer is – altyd uit dieselfde teksboek – oor 'n tydperk van jare. Met ander woorde, dieselfde prediker, dieselfde hoorders en dieselfde teks bly ter sprake. Daarbenewens word eenderse stories in die Bybel vervat, soos in die Evangelies. En baie predikante het gunstelingdele in die Bybel waaruit hulle preek. Binne hierdie kontekste, kan bekendheid en herhaling nie vermy word nie. Die verfrissing en die 'vreemd-maak' van die preek word dus 'n noodsaaklike behoefte. Onvertroudmaking (defamiliarization) kan hier goed aangewend word. Om onvertroudmaking duidelik op die prediking toe te pas, het die navorser die idee van ‘belemmerde persepsie’ ondersoek en het hy onvertroudmaking op verskeie maniere in die prediking probeer aanwend, met die fokus op beide die metode en die inhoud van die prediking. Die rede hiervoor was die behoefte om beperkings en swakpunte wat in beide die teorie van Nuwe Homiletiek en in die Russiese Formalisme geïdentifiseer is, te oorbrug en aan te vul. Die voorstel is dat 'n prediker wat prediking wil verfris en die probleme van vervelige prediking wil ontsnap nie slegs op aspekte van tegniek vir onvertroudmaking moet fokus nie, maar ook aandag aan aspekte van die inhoud van die prediking moet gee. Daarbenewens sal die prediker nodig hê om verskeie metodes vir die effek van die belemmering van persepsie te gebruik om te verhoed dat die gemeente deur herhaalde gebruik van dieselfde metode ook daarmee oorbekend raak. In hierdie sin, moet die noodsaaklike doel van predikers wat probeer om prediking te verfris wees om, met die gebruik van metodes van onvertroudmaking, op die verhaal van die Bybel, wat alreeds en van sigself vreemd en geheimnisvol is, te fokus.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/100131
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