Welcome! You have accidentally reached the blog of a heteroclite follower of Jesus: dave wainscott. I'm
"pushing toward the unobvious" as I post thinkings/linkings
re: Scripture, church and culture. Hot topics include: temple tantrums, time travel, sexuality/spirituality, U2kklesia, role of the pastor, God-haunted music/art..and subversive videos like these.
"Drawing Our Fish in the Sand: Secret Biblical Allusions in the Music of U2"
"Drawing Our Fish in the Sand: Secret Biblical Allusions in the Music of U2" by Deanne Galbraith in Biblical Interpretation 19 (2011) 181-222
Confronted with a popular music
subculture which is predominantly antipathetic to Christianity, the
charismatic-evangelical members of rock band U2 double code their lyrics in
such a manner that Christian references are hidden from mainstream listenersa nd
media while being readily recognizable to their Christian fans. The device
of allusion is especially amenable to this end, as the meaning of an
allusion can only be considered by a reader or listener who possesses the
requisite competency in respect of the
evoked text(s). Through their utilization of biblical allusions, U2 therefore
construct two diﬀerent, perhaps even irreconcilable, groups of listeners—a
knowledgeable Christian in-group and an unknowledgeable non-Christian
out-group. With detailed reference to U2’s songs, this paper examines the
covert tendencies of allusion and the manner by which it is able to engage the
listener’s intertextual imagination. The paper also distinguishes a secret or
hidden allusion from a generic allusion on pragmatic and socio-cultural
grounds, and demonstrates the potential of secret allusions to increase semantic
indeterminacy. Lastly, the paper examines some examples of the reception
of the U2 song ‘Magniﬁcent’ which demonstrate the eﬀectiveness of U2’s secret biblical allusions in creating two
largely discrete groups of listeners.
"We've found different ways of expressing it, and recognized the
power of the media to manipulate such signs. Maybe we just have to sort
of draw our fish in the sand. It's there for people who are interested.
It shouldn't be there for people who aren't." -- Bono on faith, quoted in U2 at the End of the World