Item description for Battered Love (Overtures to Biblical Theology) by Renita Weems...
Overview Weems' pioneering study explores the puzzling ways in which the Hebrew prophets' portrayals of divine love, compassion and covenantal commitment became associated with battery, infidelity, and the rape and mutilation of women.
Publishers Description Weems's pioneering study explores the puzzling ways in which the Hebrew prophets' portrayals of divine love, compassion, and conventional commitment often became associated with battery, infidelity, and the rape and mutilation of women. She wrestles with the prophets' rhetoric and sexual metaphors to uncover Israelite social structures, asking, "What is implied about women, men, and God by the language that the prophets use to describe the covenant between Yahweh and Israel?" This provocative work by a leading African American biblical scholar delves deeply into issues of intimacy and power, violence and control, seduction and betrayal, and is a searing indictment of the axial points of Israelite religion-its covenantal and prophetic traditions-and their authority today.
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Studio: FORTRESS PRESS
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.4" Width: 5.5" Height: 0.4" Weight: 0.45 lbs.
Release Date Nov 1, 1995
Publisher Augsburg Fortress Publishers
Series Overtures To Biblical Theology
ISBN 0800629485 ISBN13 9780800629489
Availability 60 units. Availability accurate as of May 25, 2017 11:45.
Usually ships within one to two business days from La Vergne, TN.
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More About Renita Weems
Renita J. Weems is a writer, Bible scholar, and minister, and the author of Just a Sister Away and I Asked for Intimacy. She lives with her husband and their daughter in Nashville, Tennessee, where she also teaches Old Testament studies at Vanderbilt University Divinity School.
Renita Weems has published or released items in the following series...
Reviews - What do customers think about Battered Love (Overtures to Biblical Theology)?
Good General Information Aug 16, 2007
Even if you have no real interest in women in the Bible this book is beneficial. Weems aptly explains the use of metaphor in scripture with regard to textual interpretation. If I have a small criticism it is that she over-explains just a little bit, but her writing here is applicable to many scriptural texts as a basis for understanding context. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in better understanding the Bible as a whole.
If you are particularly interested in women in the Bible you will find this book fascinating. If you enjoy studying prophecy you will find this book insightful. It's an easy read - it won't take much of your time to read it, and the benefit is well worth it.
Strong on rhetoric weak on theology Jun 2, 2005
Weems's book is a discussion of metaphorical language of sexuality and marriage in Hosea, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel using a revisionist hermeneutic. I gave this book two stars because reading Battered Love provides a clear example of a reader response hermeneutic. It clearly illustrates recent movements from God to God-language. The book also emphasizes the need for dealing with the issue of violence toward women. I gave this book only two stars because I believe the book ultimately moves one further away from the understanding of Scripture.
Weems speaks often about the prophets but only really addresses the negative metaphorical language of Hosea, Jeremiah and Ezekiel. Little to nothing about family or children is found in the book as if Israel sharply dichotomized various aspects of human sexuality. Even the three prophets are, for the author, ultimately unknowable because the literature is understood to be fictitious. But Weems, who wants to speak in terms of ideal prophets and a hypothetical audience, describes how the audience would have reacted (shock, disgust).
Perhaps so, but late dating the Pentateuch allows Weems to suggest that Israel was unaccustomed to applying the sphere of sexuality to God-language, yet Israel's legal material is fraught with the language and examples of human sexuality (as with the ancient Near East). Jeremiah's language may well have shocked the audience but, in fact, their most forceful reaction came from his words about the temple.
Ultimately, the book is about theology and God and Weems wants to apply such God-language to her understanding and description of God. Yet, all is the product of culture and rhetoric. So there is little left for theological categories like God's revelation or the sinful nature of human beings.
Good with some flaws Aug 19, 2003
Overall, I found this book was rather interesting. The writing was solid and easy to understand. However, the author made the assumption that the reader would agree with the basic premise that the biblical world was an inherently sexist society, in which women had no status. While I would agree with that, since she did not examine or support her presumtions, it made her conclusions harder to accept because she did not lay a good foundation. She does seem to presume that the reader would have more difficulty with the role of metaphor in the Bible. In essence my low rating comes from the viewpoint, that I wanted more content in the structures of sexism within ancient Israel rather than an explanation of metaphor in the Bible. I should say I was torn between giving this book three or four stars. If there was a button for three and a half, that is probably what I would have given it.
God as Wife Abuser Nov 29, 2000
Battered Love is about how the Hebrew Bible prophets portrayed the relationship between Israel and God. Many times the metaphor of God as husband and Israel as wife was used.
Weems points out in a fascinating study, that God was often portrayed as setting up all the rules and that strict obediance of the rules was necessary for people of Israel, the subordinate partner in the divine/human relationship. If the Israelites disobeyed the rules, then God was permitted to beat up Israel. If Israel later returned to God, then God would love Israel again.
Renita Weems explains how a metaphor works and how metaphors are used by people. Furthermore she explains quite lucidly that for many people the human husband represented God, and the wife represented the subordinate partner. Therefore, husbands throughout the centuries have believed that they have permission to beat up their disobedient wives. Renita Weems especially looks at the prophets Ezekiel, Hosea, and Jeremiah to prove her case.
Words do hurt!
A fresh and fruitful guide to reading the Prophets Dec 10, 1998
Prof. Weems has contributed a helpful critique of the social implications inherent in the Prophets' choice of metaphors. This book will alter - for the better - the way you view the Hebrew Prophets, God, and yourself.