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When Deborah Met Jael

Lesbian Biblical Hermeneutics

When Deborah Met Jael

Lesbian Biblical Hermeneutics

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Publisher: SCM Press
ISBN: 9780334029588
Published: 30/04/2005

When Deborah Met Jael defines and situates the significant elements which constitute lesbian readings of scripture. Deryn Guest explores the instability of the lesbian label and the concept of a "lesbian sensibility".

The book further explores the social location of lesbian hermeneutics, noting in particular the adverse positions of lesbians socially, economically and religiously. The author also examines the non-negotiable principles that underpin lesbian readings of biblical texts. These include; upholding the dignity of the lesbian and the authority of experience; the need to operate via a specifically lesbian hermeneutic of suspicion; the principle of ensuring the views of grassroot lesbians are included; the desirability of opening a lesbian critical position to allies and finally a willingness to confront the issue of biblical authority.

Finally, the author evaluates strategies that have been used to date by lesbians reading scripture, identifying those strategies that are most likely to provide empowerment contemporary lesbians. This chapter will engage closely with relevant biblical texts and demonstrate how these strategies can be applied.

Deryn Guest

Dr Deryn Guest is Lecturer in Biblical Hermeneutics at the University of Birmingham.