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Looking Lesbian at the Bathing Bathsheba

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image of Biblical Interpretation

The variety of approaches to interpreting scripture emerging in the late twentieth century has demonstrated how well known texts can yield different and surprising interpretations when the interpretational frame of enquiry is differently angled. Feminists and womanists have done sterling work, shedding light on the role and status of scriptural women, asking new questions, modifying and challenging existing methodologies, raising issues not traditionally incorporated within historical critical exegesis. However, almost the entirety of this work has taken place within a heterocentric frame of reference, one that assumes the heterosexuality of the scriptural women themselves and one that appears to presuppose a heterosexual academic community, since lesbian-related concerns and issues have hardly been given a sentence until very recently. This paper will outline the contribution that a lesbian-identied perspective to the Hebrew Bible can offer and query whether feminism is the best 'home' for under taking this work.

Affiliations: 1: University of Birmingham


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