An Evening Research Event!

….with Presenters Nechama Hadari and Nancy Tan

When? 3-5pm, Thursday 3 November

Where? The Cinema Lecture Theatre (Room 2.31), Clothworkers North Building, University of Leeds

Drinks and light kosher refreshments will be served

About the Presenters:

Nechama Hadari holds a doctorate in Religion and Theology from the University of Manchester. She has written on the rabbinic philosophy underlying problems in contemporary Jewish divorce law; the halakhic status of coercive treatment of anorexia nervosa sufferers and, most recently, post-Holocaust theology and the problems of trying to use Holocaust theology as a paradigmatic Jewish response to conflict and atrocity.

Nancy Tan is Associate Professor in Hebrew Bible in the Divinity School of Chung Chi College at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. She works on interpretations of women in the Hebrew Bible. Her current interests lie in promoting Contextual Interpretations for the marginalized in her community. She is at present working on a project of re-interpreting the image of God (Genesis 1:26-28) for the disabled, as well as on a bilingual book on feminist interpretations of the Bible for Hong Kong. She is on sabbatical leave and holds the post of Visiting Research Fellow with the University of Leeds.

About the Presentations:

Nechama Hadari’s presentation, ‘Women, War Crimes and Jewish Texts’ will take as its starting point two Hebrew Bible descriptions of conduct during war: descriptions we might, in our present-day context, find ‘challenging’ or ‘problematic’. The first is the hypothetical description in Deuteronomy 21:10-14, of what should happen when a soldier of the victorious Israelite army finds a ‘beautiful woman’ among the vanquished enemy captives. The second is the infamous narrative (in 2 Samuel) in which David sees and takes a beautiful woman who happens to be the wife of one of his own soldiers. Hadari uses these two texts as a basis for exploring whether or not the Jewish ethical and legal tradition has anything to contribute to contemporary discussion of ‘war crimes’ – including a question which seems to have resurfaced recently: whether a political or military leader is answerable to his men for what he asks them to do when an order he gives is morally or strategically questionable.

Nancy Tan’s presentation, ‘Towards a Feminist Hermeneutics of Genesis 1:26-28 for People with Social Communication Disorder’, explores disability theology. This theology has developed out of feminist criticism and resists the marginalization of disabled communities. And yet, few disability theologians engage with biblical texts from a feminist biblical perspective. This paper challenges patriarchal biblical interpretations that disability theologians have used to define the image of God as exclusively relational. Tan argues, instead, from a feminist hermeneutic of resistance by examining scholarly approaches to the ‘image of God’ (Genesis 1:26-28) from the perspective of those with impairment in terms of social communication.

This will be a stimulating and thought-provoking event for all those interested in biblical and gender criticism, Jewish and Christian interpretation. Please publicise widely!

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