[b-hebrew] Dinah raped?

Yigal Levin leviny1 at mail.biu.ac.il
Sat Jul 21 17:06:31 EDT 2007


Very good points, James. But all this seems like very typical male behavior, 
in traditional patriarchal societies - "boys will be boys, as long as they 
don't do it with our sister". It was convenient for them to believe that 
Dinah was raped, because then they did not have to deal with the possibly 
that SHE had acted immorally. The text, as it would seem, is ambiguous, 
maybe because the author, the descendants of Dinah's brothers, prefer not to 
accuse their own ancestors of wanton genocide of a whole city. Their act, 
however, is criticized by Jacob, both in v. 30 and later in his blessing in 
49:5-7.



We find the same kind of behavior in chapter 38 - Judah has no problem with 
going to a prostitute, but when he "finds out" that his daughter-in-law 
Tamar had been a prostitute, he commands her burned. The text is critical of 
his hypocrisy, but not of either one of his acts in themselves.



We must be very careful of assuming that the authors of the Bible shared the 
same views on "morality" that modern-day Jews and Christians do. This is 
especially true for matters of sexual behavior.



Yigal Levin


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "JAMES CHRISTIAN READ" <JCR128 at student.anglia.ac.uk>
>
> NWT Genesis 34:7
> 'And the sons of Jacob came in from the field as soon as they heard of it; 
> and the men became hurt in their feelings and they grew very angry, 
> because he had committed a disgraceful folly against Israel in lying down 
> with Jacob’s daughter, whereas nothing like that ought to be done.'
>
> Note that no mention of force is included when
> why her brothers were angry. It is the mere thought of
> their unmarried sister having extra marital sex.
>
> Further consider their response in verse 31 when being
> reprised by Isreal for their actions:
>
> “Ought anyone to treat our sister like a prostitute?”
>
> What are prostitutes better known for in Tanakh?
> For being forced to have sex?
> Or for having immoral extra-marital sex?
>
> However, one contextual point seems to stand in favour
> of an element of force. And that is why does there
> seem to be a complete lack of any indication of
> responsibility on Dinah's shoulders? Why aren't her
> brothers angry with her for acting 'like a prostitue'?
> feelings and they grew very angry, because he had committed a disgraceful 
> folly against Israel in lying down with Jacob’s daughter, whereas nothing 
> like that ought to be done.'
>
> Note that no mention of force is included when
> why her brothers were angry. It is the mere thought of
> their unmarried sister having extra marital sex.
>
> Further consider their response in verse 31 when being
> reprised by Isreal for their actions:
>
> “Ought anyone to treat our sister like a prostitute?”
>
> What are prostitutes better k
>
> _______________________________________________




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