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Transforming Scriptures is the 1st sustained therapy of African American girls writers’ highbrow, even theological, engagements with the e-book Northrop Frye known as the “great code” of Western civilization. Katherine Clay Bassard appears to be like at poetry, novels, speeches, sermons, and prayers by means of Maria W. Stewart, Frances Harper, Hannah Crafts, Harriet E. Wilson, Harriet Jacobs, Zora Neale Hurston, Toni Morrison, and Sherley Anne Williams and discusses how such texts reply as a collective “literary witness” to using the Bible for reasons of social domination. Black women’s ancient encounters with the Bible have been, certainly, transformational; within the means of “turning cursing into blessing” those girls have been either formed and reshaped by way of the scriptures they appropriated for his or her personal self-representation.

Two very important biblical figures come to be key tropes round which ladies shaped a counternarrative to the dominant culture’s “curse” on black woman id: the “talking mule” from Numbers 22 and the “black yet comely” Shulamite of track of Songs, the Queen of Sheba. Transforming Scriptures analyzes those tropes inside a number of contexts, from biblical justifications of slavery and the second-class prestige of girls to hermeneutical and post-structural opinions of the Bible. African American women’s appropriations of scripture take place inside a continuum of African American Bible-reading practices and spiritual or ideological commitments, argues Bassard. there's therefore no unmarried “black women’s hermeneutic”; particularly, theories of African American ladies and the Bible needs to account for old and social switch and difference.

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