New Authorities, New Readings

Queering Hebrew Bible Text Criticism

In: Biblical Interpretation
Author: Gil Rosenberg1
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In this paper, I argue that there are many opportunities for queer readings of texts based on the technical issues of language, manuscripts, and translations with which text criticism is concerned. In some cases, traditional methods can be used to highlight queer aspects of Biblical Hebrew and textual attestations. In others, I challenge traditional text critical assumptions and methods in order to open up a space for queer perspectives and queer interests. I argue that text criticism grants too much authority to ancient communities, and I argue for an approach that protects the interests of the queer community. I draw on Erin Runions’ concept of hybridity to sketch a possible aim for queer text criticism, I offer examples of queer emendations, and I give several cases in which scholars’ unacknowledged heteronormative assumptions have led them to use traditional methods to straighten queer moments in the biblical text(s).

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