A Feminist Companion to the Song of Songs by Athalya Brenner

By Athalya Brenner

This quantity is the 1st in a chain which gives a basic source for feminist biblical scholarship, containing a complete choice of essays, either reprinted and specifically written for the sequence, through top feminist students.

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Meyers explores this and other phenomena related to gender-motivated imagery. She starts by surveying the application of gender-specific imagery in the SoS, then progresses through the analysis and collation of male and female imagery to a discussion of women's culture or, rather, subculture within a male (androcentric) world (see section 2 above). The two essays in this section demonstrate how semiotics, discourse analysis and stylistics acquire an added dimension when handled through feminist convictions and womanly readership.

It also contains some allusions that may be interpreted as reflections of a fratriarchal or fratrilineal culture (in which power structures and social dominance belong to a woman's brothers). On the other hand, it contains few apparent references to the patriarchal, father-dominated realities that must underlie it, as they do throughout the rest of the Hebrew Bible. The book can therefore serve as a stepping stone for discussing the issue of the accepted social order and its alternatives, an issue which is central to feminist thinking and critique.

12), which she judges to be the central kingpin for the structure and comprehension of the whole book. Her conclusion goes beyond textuality and semiotics to the ideological level. She thinks that biblical language and meaning betray androcentric social attitudes; and that their usage and misinterpretation are biased, and can be pointed out as such through the semiological discussion. From matters of structure we proceed to matters of style. It is a rather curious state of affairs that, within the gender mutuality of the SoS in which the female is predominant, strong masculine metaphors are applied to the literary figure(s) of the female(s).

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