Download Disability in the Hebrew Bible: Interpreting Mental and by Saul M. Olyan PDF

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By Saul M. Olyan

Psychological and actual incapacity, ubiquitous in texts of the Hebrew Bible, obtain their first thoroughgoing therapy during this monograph. Olyan seeks to reconstruct the Hebrew Bible's specific principles of what's disabling and their strength social ramifications. Biblical representations of incapacity and biblical type schemas - either particular and implicit - are in comparison to these of the Hebrew Bible's greater historical West Asian cultural context, and to these of the later Jewish biblical interpreters who produced the lifeless Sea Scrolls. This examine can help the reader achieve a deeper and extra sophisticated realizing of the ways that biblical writers built hierarchically major distinction and privileged sure teams (e.g., folks with "whole" our bodies) over others (e.g., individuals with actual "defects"). It additionally explores how old interpreters of the Hebrew Bible comparable to the Qumran sectarians reproduced and reconfigured previous biblical notions of incapacity and past category types for his or her personal contexts and ends.

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Additional resources for Disability in the Hebrew Bible: Interpreting Mental and Physical Differences

Sample text

Female beauty is frequently described using idioms similar to those used of males who are categorized as beautiful, and the attractive qualities of women are frequently not unlike those of men. Abigail, the wife of a foolish clan chieftain of Caleb, is characterized as “beautiful with respect to appearance” (yepat to’ar) in 1 Sam 25:3, as is Rachel in Gen 29:17. oˆb ro’ˆı). Just as David’s eyes were mentioned as emblematic of his attractiveness, so too are those of Rachel (by implication), in contrast to those of her unattractive sister Leah, whose eyes are described as “weak” (rakkˆot) (Gen 29:17).

At all events, the ban on the blind and the lame must have some ideological basis, and the two most likely candidates are the threat of pollution or that of profanation. In either case, a marginalizing and stigmatizing discourse would lie behind the proscription of blind and lame worshipers from the Jerusalem temple sphere. The interdiction of Deut 23:2 (Eng. 1) appears to have a different rationale altogether. In that text, men with two types of genital damage ( = “defects”) are apparently prohibited from entering the temple sphere.

Toˆb) on the one hand, and “ugly” (ra‘) on the other. 20 As C. Dohmen stated, “the semantic spectrum of these polar terms is very broad, as is the range of their syntactic variation. The meaning of the contrast extends from a general ‘positive – negative’ response of emotions, feelings, and sense perceptions . . to describing ethical knowledge in its totality and the ability to decide between right and wrong. . ” The two components of the opposition are brought together in the expression “to spurn the evil and choose the good” (Isa 7:16), an idiom that refers to discernment of right from wrong, appropriate from inappropriate; they are also famously paired in Gen 2:17; 3:5, 22.

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