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Teaching Oppressive Texts



Scholars have identified the many stories in the Bible that are oppressive to women or other minoritized groups. It is remarkable how common it is that North American undergraduate students remain blind to the oppression that is depicted and that is too often the result of commonly accepted interpretations of these texts. Three brief essays collected here, originally presented as part of a panel at the Society of Biblical Literature annual meeting (Atlanta, 2010), present various teaching strategies for exposing the oppressive elements in the biblical text and showing how the oppression operates (an aspect of ideological criticism). What are good strategies for communicating these hard points to students in a way they can hear them and work with them? Why is this important to do?