Offsite Review: Handbook of Women Biblical Interpretors

Layout 1There is a small controversy going on about whether graduate students should blog or not.  (Will it negatively impact their future job prospects, no one agrees later with all of what they write in grad school, can you get good feedback from internet trolls, is is possible to make academic contacts based on blog posts, etc.)

Personally I like reading students blogs because they are learning and push me to look at newer research and ways of things about things.  So I try to follow a couple of student blogs.  The controversy made me aware of a couple I didn’t know about.  I started following a Wheaton College group blog (in large part because that is where I did my undergrad) and ran across this book review on Women Bible teachers.

There is far too little attention paid to women as bible teachers and interpreters, even given their relative scarcity, so the book looks interesting.

…In the introduction, Taylor provides evidence of the massive gap in the field of biblical studies, a broad failure to recognize women’s contributions on this point. Taylor insists that even if many women’s writings are “unsystematic” or on a popular level, they could still have significant influence. Taylor confines her focus to women writers from the early church through roughly the 1970s and 1980s. This means that non-Western women and women still living are not included. Taylor also discusses some common trends or themes among the women, though without suppressing the differences among them. The book contains 180 entries of women whose work was influential, distinct, or representative of their time. Each entry contains a short biography to set the context, an analysis of the woman’s work including its significance, and a short bibliography of primary and secondary works. At the back of the book is an index of subjects (names, topics, etc.), as well as one of Scripture passages. This book is thorough, well designed, and an excellent resource for scholars at various levels. If it does well, perhaps Baker would be willing to publish a second volume dedicated to non-Western voices.

continue reading the rest of the review

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