Original Research - Special Collection: Foundation subjects - Old and New Testament Studies

Insults and face work in the Bible

John J. Pilch
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 70, No 1 | a2655 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v70i1.2655 | © 2014 John J. Pilch | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 13 March 2014 | Published: 30 October 2014

About the author(s)

John J. Pilch, Johns Hopkins University, Odyssey Program, United States of America; Department of New Testament Studies, Faculty of Theology, University of Pretoria, South Africa


Insults play a key role in social interaction in the agonistic culture of the Middle East. This article constructs a social scientific model of social interaction regarding face work and insults and then filters the Gospel of Matthew through that model to highlight the prevalence of insult in the biblical world.


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Crossref Citations

1. Proverbs in Middle East North Africa (MENA) Cultural Context
John J. Pilch
Biblical Theology Bulletin: Journal of Bible and Culture  vol: 45  issue: 4  first page: 202  year: 2015  
doi: 10.1177/0146107915608594