This work provides a brief introduction to feminist interpretation of scripture. Feminist interpretation is first grounded in feminism as an intellectual and political movement. Next, this introduction briefly recounts the origins of feminist readings of the Bible with attention to both early readings and the beginnings of feminist biblical scholarship in the academy. Feminist biblical scholarship is not a single methodology, but rather an approach that can shape any reading method. As a discipline, it began with literary-critical readings (especially of the Hebrew Bible) but soon also broached questions of women’s history (especially in the New Testament and Christian origins). Since these first forays, feminist interpretation has influenced almost every type of biblical scholarship. The third section of this essay, then, looks at gender archaeology, feminist poststructuralism and postcolonial readings, and newer approaches informed by gender and queer theory. Finally, it ends by examining feminist readings of Eve.
Jennifer L. Koosed, Ph.D. (Vanderbilt University, 2004), is a Professor of Religious Studies at Albright College in Reading, Pennsylvania. She is the author of a number of monographs, including
Gleaning Ruth: A Biblical Heroine and Her Afterlives ((University of South Carolina, 2011).
Reading the Bible as a Feminist Jennifer L. Koosed Abstract
Preface: The Bible in the Hands of an Angry Man
Part 1. What is Feminism?
Part 2. The Bible in the Hands of Angry Women
Part 3. The Field Expands
Part 4. Eve: The Mother of All Feminist Interpreters
Conclusion: Flying Away with Lilith
Anyone interested in feminism and the way it has shaped biblical scholarship: biblical scholars, clergy and educated laypeople, graduate and undergraduate students.