Conceiving a Nation: The Development of Political Discourse by Mira Morgenstern

By Mira Morgenstern

Current conflicts in either nationwide and overseas arenas have undermined the traditional, natural notion of nationhood as conventionally espoused within the 19th century. Conceiving a state argues that the trendy knowing of the kingdom as a contested concept—as the fabricated from a fluid and ongoing strategy of negotiation open to more than a few livable solutions—is really rooted within the Bible.

This booklet attracts cognizance to the contribution that the Bible makes to political discourse concerning the kingdom. The Bible is very compatible to this open-ended discourse due to its personal nature as a textual content whose ambiguity and laconic caliber render it regularly open to new interpretations and acceptable to altering conditions. The Bible deals a pluralistic knowing of other types of political improvement for various countries, and it depicts changing options of nationwide identification through the years.

In this ebook, Morgenstern reads the Bible because the resource of a dynamic critique of the guidelines which are conventionally thought of to be primary to nationwide id, treating in successive chapters the ethnic (Ruth), the cultural (Samson), the political (Jotham), and the territorial (Esther). all through, she explores a couple of universal topics, similar to the connection of ladies to political authority and the “strangeness” of Israelite political life. within the end, she elucidates how biblical research can relief in popularity of recent claims to nationhood.

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Extra resources for Conceiving a Nation: The Development of Political Discourse in the Hebrew Bible

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And behold, seven ears of corn; thin and blasted by the east wind, sprang up after them. And the seven thin ears of corn swallowed the seven good and full ears of corn. Pharaoh awakened and behold, it is/has been a dream. (Gen. 21 Sensitive to the subtle nuances of the language utilized by the text, the Midrash points out that in fact Pharaoh’s advisors and magicians do proffer their own interpretations of these dreams. 22 Similarly, the seven full stalks of grain represent seven kingdoms that Pharaoh 20.

The continued presence of the destructive emotions of the past seems to pose an insuperable obstacle to Joseph’s desire to recalibrate their communal existence. At Wrst glance, using the powers of speech—which is to say, conversation and interpretation—to achieve unity among Jacob’s sons seems to exacerbate the problem. 34 32. In putting forth this understanding of Joseph’s testing of his brothers, Sternberg argues that Joseph’s return of the purchase price of the food to the brothers has precisely this goal in mind: to see whether the brothers will take the opportunity to argue that they are helpless to prevent their unfortunate brother’s fate and wind up both getting rid of the unwanted sibling and, as in Joseph’s case, keeping their ill-gotten gains.

44:18). The wording of this verse is signiWcant, telling us that the ability to free oneself from the constraints of past history can come about only when two separate individuals—even two opposite entities—are forced to approach, to take each other’s full measure, and together construct a dialogue that renders their encounter interactive instead of repetitively static. 63 This latter point is likewise signaled in the Midrashic reading, which, in comparing Joseph to a pit and Judah to the rope that alone is capable of drawing out the treasure concealed in the depths, implies that it is in the dialectical confrontation of opposing forces that hidden possibilities and solutions are made possible.

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