The Portrayal of Women in the Old Testament: A Feminist Reading of the Books of Susanna, Judith and Ruth

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The Hebrew Bible, which contains 39 books is usually called the Old Testament by Christians. Appendix to the Old Testament, 14 books are also included. These texts are called the Apocrypha (Greek apokryptein 'to hide away'). Among these, we find three books that bear names of women characters (namely, Susanna, Judith and Ruth). The aim of the present study is to examine and analyze these three women characters by using the feminist literary approach. Even though there are different kinds of feminist approaches, I have tried to apply what is known as 'the feminist critique' - the feminist analysis of male-authored texts. The paper is divided into four chapters. The first chapter deals with the background, objectives, methodology, and significance of the study. Chapter two presents a review of related literature. In this section I have attempted to give attention to some feminist literary theories and critical studies available in the libraries I visited. The feminist critical studies that deal with different elements of literature, such as novels, short stories, poetry etc., are enormous. So I have tried to limit myself to the studies that focus on the Hebrew Bible only. In the third chapter an attempt has been made to examine and analyze the selected Biblical narratives according to the framework discussed in the second chapter. Then, the final chapter is the conclusion. In this section a brief summary and some findings would be discussed



Old Testament by Christians