By Eryl W. Davies

This advisor for the confused will exhibit how smooth biblical students have expressed dissatisfaction with a one-sided historical-critical method of biblical texts and feature argued that advancements in secular literary conception can be utilized in religious study. while the historical-critical procedure used to be occupied with the instant of a text's creation (authorship, date, position of writing etc), the literary method is worried with the instant of the text's reception. Eryl W. Davies indicates how and why methods similar to ‘reader-response criticism', ‘feminist criticism', ‘ideological criticism', ‘canonical feedback' and ‘post-colonial feedback' at the moment are gaining popularity in lots of quarters. the quantity explains to the uninitiated in a readable and available shape how suggestions initially derived from secular literary feedback were followed by way of biblical students to be able to comprehend the textual content of Scripture and to understand its relevance.

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While it was true that feminist biblical scholars still struggled to have their work published in the traditional scholarly journals, it was becoming increasingly clear that feminist biblical interpretation could no longer be shunted to the edges of academia and be regarded simply as a passing fad. Indeed, by the late 1970s, feminist studies had become a recognized area of biblical inquiry and were included in the curricula of many universities and theological seminaries. Since then the output of feminist biblical scholars has been nothing short of prolific, and sympathy for the type of approach that they advocated has steadily grown within the scholarly guild.

2 She claimed that the Bible, owing to its profound religious and cultural authority, had been instrumental over the centuries in establishing and consolidating the patriarchal exercise of power and in denying women some of their basic rights and freedom. Indeed, given that the Bible was primarily responsible for the denigration of half the human race, Cady Stanton could not understand why it was still held in such high esteem by women. Whenever they had complained about their lack of citizenship, or demanded equal access with men to theological training and to the ordained ministry, opponents of women’s suffrage had used the Bible as ammunition against them: ‘When in the early part of the nineteenth century, women began to protest against their civil and political degradation, they were referred to the Bible for an answer.

It was this realization that prompted Cady Stanton, towards the end of the nineteenth century, to initiate her ambitious project, entitled The Woman’s Bible, much to the indignation of the church and, indeed, the community at large. The aim of this ambitious project was to highlight the male bias of Scripture and to excise from the Bible those passages that were blatantly misogynistic. indd 38 11/9/2012 4:49:37 AM FEMINIST BIBLICAL CRITICISM 39 her strategy of eliminating from the Bible texts that might offend female sensibilities in the following terms: ‘We need an expurgated edition of the Old and the New Testaments before they are fit to be placed in the hands of our youth to be read in the public schools and in theological seminaries, especially if we wish to inspire our children with proper love and respect for the Mothers of the Race’ (1898: 184).

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Biblical Criticism: A Guide for the Perplexed by Eryl W. Davies
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