Adam and Eve, David and Bathsheba: stories and afterlives of biblical marriages
Time: 10:30 - 16:30
Location: KS - Keeley Street
This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
Course Code: HRS36
Duration: 1 session
What is the course about?
In the course of the day, we will read and analyse the stories of Miriam the Prophetess, Ruth the Migrant and Esther the Queen. We will explore the narrative using a variety of tools, including sociological and feminist perspectives. We will then examine a number of literary texts which have been inspired by the reading of these women’s stories.
What will we cover?
The story of Miriam in the books of Exodus, Numbers and Micah: the question of her function as ‘prophetess will also be analysed in the light of extra-biblical religious texts, as well as how the story has been read by a range of writers from the medieval period to the sixteenth century and modern times.
The story of Ruth is contained in the book of the same name. Her plight will be analysed in the context of the Torah and in a number of novels, including Elizabeth Gaskell,’s Ruth and Marilynne Robinson’s work.
Esther is also the name of a late biblical book, which will give us an opportunity to examine the complex relationship between women and political power. We will also look at examples of how this book has been re-read in various works ranging from early Jewish to modern times.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
• Analyse biblical stories relating to three biblical women.
• Introduce some of the tools used from feminist scholars.
• Appreciate the literary impact of some biblical texts about women outside the Bible.
• Understand the factors at work in the transformation of these stories in various literary works.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
Anyone is welcome, although some knowledge of the Bible is desirable, but not essential. More importantly an openness of mind and a willingness to engage with a variety of views is required.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
The course will use look at the stories in their original setting, and will be organised around group discussion and illustrated lectures.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
Please bring a copy of the Bible.
No additional cost. Photocopies of some key texts will be provided.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
You might be interested in HRS37 - From Cain and Abel to Joseph and his brothers: stories and afterlives of biblical siblings, taught by the same tutor.
Dr Ann Jeffers taught Biblical Studies (Hebrew Bible and Second Temple Judaism) at Trinity College Dublin and Heythrop College, University of London for 30 years. She is now Research Fellow at Roehampton University. Her research interests, and publications are in the field of magic and divination in the Bible and the ancient world, feminism and reception history of the Bible mostly in literature and the visual arts. She also belongs to an interdisciplinary research group, ‘Media and Religion’.
Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.