Recovering the Original Gospel of Thomas
A History of the Gospel and its Growth
London: T & T Clark; 2005; paperback 2006
The Gospel of Thomas is an engimatic collection of 114 sayings of Jesus. Here, April DeConick explores tough questions that have occupied scholars since the discovery of this gospel in the sands of Egypt in the 1940s. Where did this gospel come from? When was it written? Who wrote it? Why was it composed? What is its meaning? Rather than taking the conventional approach to answering these questions, DeConick examines these issues anew by proposing that the gospel developed within a climate dominated by oral consciousness as a product of communal memory.
"In welding new theories of orality and community memory to traditional historical criticism, April DeConick has produced a ground-breaking study of the Gospel of Thomas that convincingly overturns much of current scholarship. Recovering the Original Gospel of Thomas is the most important book on that gospel to appear in a very long time."
Birger A. Pearson, Emeritus Professor of Religious Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara
"Fresh, provocative, and well researched, April DeConick's book is...a revisionist presentation of the Gospel of Thomas that offers a serious challenge to current interpretations of Thomas and the sayings of Jesus in Thomas."
Marvin Meyer, Griset Professor of Bible and Christian Studies, Chapman University
A "great book" that "sets the stage for a new chapter in this field of research."
Eric Noffke, RBL, June 23, 2006.
"This is, in my view, one of the most important books on Thomas ever published."
Birger Pearson, Religious Studies Review 32:3 (2006) page 196.
Gilles Quispel, Vigiliae Christianae 60 (2006) pages 231-233.