Genesis – “Wife-Sister” stories


Using the concept of the type-scene, analyze the so-called “wife-sister” episodes in Genesis: Gen. 12:10-20, Gen. 20:1-18 followed by 21:22-33, and Gen. 26:1-33. In these stories, Abraham, and later Isaac, while visiting foreign cities, present their wives as mere sisters (making them sexually available to other men) in order to protect themselves from the aggression of foreign sexual rivals.   What you must do in this paper: Write an interpretation of these stories considering the underlying convention.   The paper must also answer these questions: – How do J and E’s different modes of employment (see Hendel, “Poetics of Myth”) shape their use of this type-scene? – Consider the idea as well of the “encounter,” in which the blessing of God’s “chosen” patriarch (Self) seems to triumph over the foreign Other. What does it mean that in all three of these stories the patriarch does not appear to occupy the moral high ground?   Remember to keep in mind the following before writing the paper: – You should review Alter’s discussion of the type-scene in “The Art of Biblical Narrative”. – You should also take into consideration the fact that J wrote the 1st and 3rd stories, while E wrote the 2nd.   ONLY sources you MUST use: 1.       “The Bible with Sources Revealed” by Richard Elliott Friedman 2.       “The Poetics of Myth in Genesis” by Ronald S. Hendel

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