This volume examines the unusual interest in women characters displayed in the
Book of Jubilees, an interpretive reworking of the biblical narratives of Genesis through Exodus 12, written in the second century BCE. Demonstrating a pattern in the characterizations, the study shows how a matrilineal standard of ethnic purity and elevation of the biblical matriarchs function as key aspects in a polemic against the acceptance of foreigners into the community.
The latter part of the book explores the exegetical techniques used to develop the portraits and places the polemic in the historical context of Second Temple Judaism.
The work is important for those interested in the history of biblical interpretation, in post biblical Jewish literature and the historical development of Judaism, and the portrayals of women in Hebrew Scriptures.
Betsy Halpern-Amaru, Professor of Religion at Vassar College, has published extensively on the characterizations of women and on Land theology in Second Temple Jewish literature including
Rewriting the Bible: Land and Covenant in Post-Biblical Jewish Literature (
Trinity International, 1994).
Those interested in Interpretation of Hebrew Scriptures, Second Temple Judaism; Qumran Studies, and in portrayals of women in antiquity. Appropriate for academic libraries, specialists, upper level students, and educated laymen.