|I went to Roberts Wesleyan College in Rochester, NY from 1986 to 1989 as a Religion & Philosophy major. My mentor, Dr. Paul Livermore, has a Ph.D. from Princeton and treated all his students as if we were in seminary. Many seminaries used the texts we used in our undergrad: Jaroslav Pelikan, Williston Walker, Fitzmeyer, Brown & Murphy, FF Bruce, Metzger, etc.|
I remember one day he said about the scholarship of Bruce Metzger, "He was so good he could hear grass grow."
It used to be that we would read scholarly journals, commentaries, bible dictionaries, theological wordbooks, etc., spending extensive amounts of time in the reference section of the library. There were databases and bibliographies that pointed me to the "standard" data and of course one used journals for "more recent streams of thought".
I've seen the transition happening over the years to computer aided reference materials. You may have not held it in your hand, but you knew where the scholarly data was.
What happens when scholars become bloggers? McKnight's exploration of the perpetual virginity of Mary is outstanding, and of equal interest and value are the interactive comments by "lesser known" scholars and lay people.
I don't think I even know the MLA format for citing a blog. There's no page #. What do you reference — a URL and say "scroll down three screens"? Let alone citing a blog, how would one cite a comment on a blog from some idiot named The Ultra Rev, who is unidentifiable as a person and whose scholarly compentency would be in dispute?
When we used to do research you knew which databases would point you in the right direction. No longer. It could be that the best scholarship on an issue is from the comment of an anonymous or unknown person and blog.
This all just points to a shift in our post-modern world. We used to know which databases or bibliographies told us who the credentialed orrecognizedd experts were and which books they published their expert knowledge in. No longer.
So how do we do research now? The answer to this is the answer to all of life's problems: Google.