The Story of Dinah examines the intersection of rape culture and Jewish tradition by tracing over two thousand years of Jewish commentary on Genesis 34. Using a definition of rape derived from the Hebrew Bible, Ruit scrutinizes the commentaries on the text for reflections of what would be deemed “rape myths” today. This book journeys through time and tradition as it uncovers the evolution of Jewish thought regarding women, rape, and women who have been violated. Every period examined, from the biblical account and the intertestamental writings all the way through to present day, reveals surprising and powerful insights about Jewish tradition and its attitudes towards women and sexual violation.
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About the Author
Gavi S. Ruit has taught Jewish studies courses at a number of Southern California universities and currently teaches adult education classes at synagogues in New England.
Table of ContentsChapter One Introduction: Looking for Answers
Chapter Two Rape in the Hebrew Bible: Was Dinah Raped?
Chapter Three Intertestamental Period: Supportive Beginnings
Chapter Four Rabbinic Period: The Introduction of Rape Myth
Chapter Five Medieval Period: Redeeming Dinah
Chapter Six Modern Period: Orthodox Commentaries
Chapter Seven Modern Period: Progressive Commentaries
Chapter Eight Modern Midrash and Rape Myth: Everything Old is New Again
Chapter Nine Conclusion: Jewish Tradition and Rape Myth
Appendix Annotated Translation of Genesis 34