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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

Body, Gender and Purity in Leviticus 12 and 15
Erbele-Küster, Dorothea

London: Bloomsbury, 2017 pp. xiii + 186. $105.00

Series Information
Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Studies, 539

Description: The so-called purity laws in Leviticus 11-15 reflect a cultic and social view on the male and female body. These texts do not give detailed physiological descriptions. Instead, they prescribe what to do in the cases of skin disease, delivery and wo/man's genital discharges, but the particular way of dealing with the body and the language used in Leviticus 12 and 15 ask for clarification: How do these texts construct the male and female body? Which roles does gender play within this language? By means of themes like menstruation and circumcision, the author unfolds the language used for the body in Leviticus and its interpretation history. The study provides material for a contemporary anthropology of bodies which relates the human sexed body to God's holiness.

Subjects: Bible, Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, Pentateuch, Leviticus, Literature, Methods, Social-Scientific Approaches, Other Methods

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Review by Yitzhaq Feder
Published 10/18/2018
Citation: Yitzhaq Feder, review of Dorothea Erbele-Küster, Body, Gender and Purity in Leviticus 12 and 15, Review of Biblical Literature [] (2018).

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