Original Research

Constructing Protestant and Catholic Peters: A comparative study in the literary use of the New Testament and ecclesiastical tradition

F. Hale
Verbum et Ecclesia | Vol 30, No 1 | a65 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v30i1.65 | © 2009 F. Hale | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 17 July 2009 | Published: 17 July 2009

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Just as literary authors have long taken liberties with the biblical accounts of Jesus Christ and shaped Him to fit their own agendas, they have also appropriated considerable artistic licence in enhancing the meagre information about Peter in the New Testament when constructing fictional narratives about him. A comparison of The Big Fisherman by the theologically liberal American Congregationalist Lloyd C Douglas and Simon Peter the Fisherman by the Austrian Catholic Kurt Frieberger illustrates how two accomplished novelists, drawing in part on similar sources, created markedly different and to some extent predictable images of this apostle. Neither novel is fully faithful to the New Testament evidence; both evince the influence of extrabiblical sources.


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