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What Happens When Achsah Gets Off Her Ass? Queer Reading And Judges 1:11–15

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Chapter Summary

This chapter explores, on the one hand, conventional gendered reading positions that may be encouraged by the biblical texts; and, on the other hand, a resistance to such conventional reading positions, a resistance that specifically takes the form, not of avoiding the Bible, but rather of reading it "in a new way". The chapter discusses one female character who has received a great deal of attention from feminist interpreters of the Bible, the young woman Achsah who appears in the first chapter of Judges. Tammi Schneider points out, Caleb's surprise may be motivated less by Achsah's specificactions "from on her ass" than by the fact that she has traveled to her father without any husband in the first place. It is not only the boundaries of gender identity that are "queered" by a close reading of this text. The boundaries of ethnic identity are destabilized as well.

Keywords: Achsah's ass; biblical interpretation; Caleb; gender identity; Judges 1:11-15; queer reading



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