What is the course about?
This study day will examine three clusters of biblical narratives focusing on biblical marriages. We will consider the stories of Adam and Eve; Abraham, Sarah and Hagar; and David and Bathsheba. These stories have been taken up by Jewish and Christian communities across centuries as they struggled to make sense of the stories themselves, and chose to interpret them in the light of their own socio-economic circumstances. Each cluster will focus on a different problem: the place and function of women vis-a-vis men in society (Adam and Eve), dealing with infertility (Abraham, Sarah and Hagar) and adultery (David and Bathsheba).
What will we cover?
• Adam and Eve
• Abraham, Sarah and Hagar
• David and Bathsheba.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
· Analyse biblical stories relating to three sets of texts focused on famous biblical marriages.
· begin to use some of the tools used from biblical scholarship, in particular the reception of biblical texts.
· Appreciate the literary impact of some biblical texts about biblical characters 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 discussions and illustrated lectures.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
There is no extra cost. Please bring a copy of the Bible.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
You might be interested in HRS37: Cain and Abel, Jacob and Esau, Leah and Rachel, Joseph and his brothers: stories and afterlives of biblical siblings - also taught by Ann Jeffers, on 30.5.20.