What literary form is used in Chapter 2 of the The Gospel according to Mark. Explain Why?

Expert Answers
readerofbooks eNotes educator| Certified Educator

If you are asking about the genre of the book of Mark, it is a gospel. There was a certain type of genre in the ancient world called aretology, which was a work that praised the virtue of a person. The gospels nicely fit into this genre.

So, we can say that Mark is an aretology and chapter 2 of Mark is a chapter of polemics within the genre of aretology. In particular, there are four polemics. First, there is the conflict about healing a paralyzed man. Jesus also claims to forgive his sins, which was a huge theological problem for the Jews. Second, there is the conflict with eating with a tax collector, which was controversial in the ancient world. Tax collectors were seen as traitors. Third, there is the conflict over fasting, namely Jesus' follower do not fast. Fourth, there is a conflict over breaking the Sabbath, which was an important tradition among the Jews.

In light of these points, we can say that the whole chapter - all four pericopes - concern some conflict.