Brown vs. Hurtado [Aguirre]

In  “The Conversion of Christianity” from The World of Late Antiquity by Peter Brown and  “The Early Christian Preference for the Codex” from The Earliest Christian Artifacts by Larry Hurtado, both focus on  major topics that are crucial  when it comes to the understanding of  early Christian religion and the development and spread of Christianity during the fall of the Roman empire. Although both topics are similar, each author decided to focus  on distinct subject matter, Hurtado on the spread of Christian teachings through codices and Brown focuses on the overall spread of Christianity at the time. Each other decides to inform their audiences in different ways as well, Brown takes a much more opinionated stand while Hurtado takes an analytical approach– which includes data and the stand point of other historians, while still keeping his point of view. Each other does an amazing job of informing the readers.

In order to under the work of both Hurtado and Brown we must look into their audiences. Brown’s style of writing is much more linear and complex; Brown expects his audience to have an already pre established notion of what he is talking about–we can see that he wants to inform his reader on his opinion on the spread of christianity, but not be teaching them about the history of christianity.  He includes his opinion through out the whole chapter, on page 82 “This is probably the most important aggiornamento in the history of the Church: it was certainly the most decisive single event in the culture of the third century”, but that is simply his stand on the fall of the roman empire  and the rise christianity. Brown also does not solely try to get his point across to his reader by just writing, he includes specific photos in the chapter to show visual representation of what he is trying to talk about. Hurtado on the other hand is much more detailed about in his writing– he uses concrete data in his evidence to prove that codices played a major role in the spread of christianity. He does not assume that his audience know all about the topic he is covering, so he makes sure that he is as clear as possible. Hurtado tries to make his information as credible as possible by including other historians’ “incorrect”  point of view and as a way to contrast to his informative chapter. Like Brown Hurtado also uses images to back up his claims.




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