Taking reader-response to its logical conclusion : reading Romans with ordinary readers in Pietermaritzburg.
This study is uses reader-response methodology in order to argue: 1) that it is possible through a right understanding and application of this methodology to use it to discover how ordinary readers interpret the Epistle to the Romans and to present a reading of the text by two groups of ordinary readers in Pietermaritzburg. 2) that it is possible to collect the data necessary for the presentation of the interpretation of Romans by ordinary readers using the techniques .that have been developed in ethnographic research. 3) that the interpretation of the letter by ordinary readers shows that they read the text of Romans with a mixture of acceptance and resistance to the rhetoric of the text. 4) that a discussion of the debate on the authorial i intention in Romans can be used to posit the reactions of the original readers/hearers of the letter and that this reaction can then be compared with that of the readers in Pietermaritzburg. To reach the conclusion that in the case of Romans, and by extension in any other text, it is the ordinary readers of the text who, by accepting or rejecting it, determine the success or failure of the author in communicating her intention through the text .