This book follows a reader's logic of association through a series of overlapping constructs in biblical prescription of things prized and lofty-holy hair, unblemished beasts, sacred edibles, wholesome wombs, pristine precincts, esteemed ethnicities and, as unlikely as it seems, dismembered members. Thoroughly intersectional in disposition, Bernon Lee uncovers not just the precariousness of the contrived dichotomies through the identity-building sacred texts, but also the complexities and contentions of a would-be decolonizing hermeneutic bristling with its own tensions and temptations. This volume is an intertextual odyssey through law and ritual from impassioned positions fraught with ambivalence, reticence, and anxiety.
Bernon Lee is professor of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament at Bethel University, Minnesota, USA, and the author of Between Law and Narrative: The Method and Function of Abstraction.
Introduction: A Prologue to Wandering1. Casting the Web: The Moses-God Exchanges on the Passover (Exodus 11:1-13:16)
2. Expanding the Web: Numbers 5-6 with a View to Leviticus 21-22
3. Reversing the Trend: Looking Askance at Deuteronomy 22-24
4. Coming Home: Through the Doors of Judges 19 and Exodus 11-12
Epilogue: Scenes from Afar