Analisi linguistico-retorica di Joseph Ratzinger, “Das Gleichnis vom barmherzigen Samariter”
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The exegetical analysis of The parable of the good Samaritan (Lk 10, 25-37) made by J. Ratzinger in his book Jesus of Nazareth (2007) offers a personal reading of the evangelical passage. It highlights the intensity and profoundness of a downright interior course. In this course, expressed through noteworthy linguistic-rhetorical expedients, the author identifies himself with the protagonist of the narrated episode in a crescendo of interweaving voices and perspectives (I, we, we all, everyone). The three introspective levels of this interior path are the stylistic mirror of the author’s personal plunging into three different points of view: the narrator (the evangelist Luke), the protagonist of the parable (the Samaritan), and the holistic perspective of God becoming neighbour in Jesus. Readers are invited to identify themselves in this personal course. The rhetorical expedients, with which Ratzinger reads Jesus’ answer offered in the parable, help the reader grasp the semantic nuances contained in the evangelical text. These nuances disclose the purpose of the “informative act” inherent in the evangelical teaching, which is becoming a “performative act”, challenging readers to give their free personal answer.