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Bibil Identifier bibil:214720
Publication Type Journal article
Title (English, Long) Why Do Readers Believe Lot? Genesis 19 Reconsidered
Author Bailey, Randall C.
Journal Old Testament Essays (Volume: 23, Issue: 3)
Year (Publication) 2010
Year (Original (1st Edition)) 2010
Year (Copyright) 2010
Year (Reference) 2010
Language English
Pages 519-548 Pages
Genre Original
Abstract The popular reading of the story of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah in Genesis 19 credits the destruction of the cities to rampant homosexuality. The basis of this reading is found in the ambiguous statement of the deity in Genesis 18:20 as to their "grave sin" and Lot's statement in 19:8 that the men of Sodom should sexually assault his daughters instead of the men. These two statements, grounded in patriarchy, heterosexism, ethnocentrism and theocentrism underpin the sanction to oppress same gender loving people with the "authority of holy hatred". This article will give an alternative reading to the narrative by concentrating on literary cues, often masked by translation choices, by characterizations of Lot and the deity, and by comparisons with other similar plot details. My contention is that the narrative can be read as a spy tale on the order of Joshua 2 and 2 Samuel 10. I also contend that the proposed use of the bodies of Lot's daughters follows other biblical narratives of men feeling threatened and who use women's bodies to protect themselves. Finally I argue that the translation choices of the commentators in presenting the narrative and. discussing the passage ignore other options of translation and interpretation, thus, readers are kept hound to see this story as one about homosexuality instead of daughters being sexually abused. The latter possibility is so horrific that the anti-homosexual reading has been sustained by readers in order to not only exonerate the deity but also to support patriarchal, ethnocentric, theocentric and heterosexist privileges.
Keywords Thesaurus BiBIL : Old Testament (Introduction) : Theology : Themes : Sexuality
Pericopes Genesis 19
Joshua 2,1-2,4
2 Samuel 10,1-10,5
Judges 11,30-11,40
Last modification 2017-10-27