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Re: Sects

I've watched this developing for a while, ever since Philip Davies 
mentioned something about the community of the CD, or something, and 
someone replied something about the "sect" of CD. 

As far as I'm aware, from observing the usage, the "community" of a text 
refers to all we can infer about the writer(s) and reader(s) of a 
particular text from the specific text itself. It does not necessarily 
imply that each text is produced by a separate community from every 
other, or that we really *know* which texts belong to which (textual) 
The reason for talking about the community of a text is to have a handy 
way to say that we are not trying to generalize beyond what we know or 
infer or even imagine about the people who had to do solely with *this* 
particular text. Thus, the people who form the community of the Temple 
Scroll are not necessarily completely different from those who form the 
community of the CD; however, they are described differently in a work 
which deals with the Temple Scroll from the way they get described in a 
modern work discussing only CD. (Two of P. Davies's works.)

The rationale for this approach is that it is impossible to know the 
internal structure and valuation of the different texts for some or all 
of the members of any group which concerned themselves with the texts. 

A sect, on the other hand, is a "community" that is sociologically 
defined in some way, by those things which set it apart from other sects. 
All baumgarten may be on Irion by now, and he can answer that part of the 
definitional issue better than I -- or someone else might.

Finally, in terms of Yirmyahu's logical analysis, the specific reason for 
talking about "communities" of texts is to remove the analysis from 
concerns that X --> Y, i.e. that X (community) implies Y (sect). However,
it would be true that W (text) implies X (community), with the operation 
of implication a very dense matter which involves the necessity that a 
text had author(s) and reader(s).

Sigrid Peterson   UPenn   petersig@ccat.sas.upenn.edu