Thursday, April 11, 2019

Book review:"Subversive Sequels in the Bible:How Biblical Stories Mine & Undermine Each Other (Judy Klitsner)

As promised, here's a belated review of , by Judy Klitsner, which I read some years ago.  I copied this review from some old notes of mine.

The author does a nice job tracking the growth of women from the relatively passive Sarah, whose husband doesn’t bother praying to G-d to cure her barrenness because he doesn’t even care whether his heir comes from his wife or his concubine, to the barren Hannah, who takes matters entirely into her own hands, doing her own praying for a child, and deciding to dedicate that child to G-d by giving him to serve in the Holy Temple without even consulting her supportive husband, who accepts her decision without G-d clobbering him over the head “sh’ma b’kolah/listen to her [Sarah's] voice” style. This book presents the idea that many biblical stories of all kinds are improved in later biblical stories.

Rabbi David Wolpe's review is here.  An Israeli rabbi, Israel Drazin, posted his review here.

And here are some interesting related thoughts from the author herself.


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