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date: 19 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines how words become the weapons of the disempowered in the book of Daniel. Given the subversive undertones of the text, the Daniel narrative wages its own form of combat, which at times, appears no less violent than the campaigns that accompany real life warfare. Like other Jewish writings of the same period, the book functions presumably as a form of protest against imperial policies and practices. Still, the book’s shifting rhetorical stance could be indicative of the writer’s altered perception of the fluctuating social conditions of his era and his group’s tenuous (political and religious) position amidst the turmoil. When understood in this fashion, the message of Daniel survives as one that not only subverts imperial authority, but one that also speaks truth to the ideological and religious authorities of its day, including those among its own constituency.

Keywords: warring words, warfare, combat, disempowered, Daniel narrative, subversive undertones, book of Daniel, empire, ideology

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