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Hidden Identity of Women in Church and Society : A Re-reading of the Book of Esther
Authorship Description
Dr. Atula Ao.
Bibliographical Details xiv, 121 p. 23 cm.
Edition, Place & Publisher 1st ed. New Delhi, Christian World Imprints.
ISBN-10 9351481476
ISBN-13 9789351481478, 978-9351481478
Year of Publication 2016.
Series Biblical Hermeneutics Rediscovered - 2.
List Price
US $ 45.00
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This book meticulously addresses the issue of `Feminist/Womanist Identities' & `Biblical Hermeneutics'; and there mutual impact on each other. The author picks up constructed identity of two women in the biblical narrative, to analyse it from the prism of women's identity formation, which in this case is a pure patriarchal construction. The story of the book of Esther is: the `vamp' - Vashti, versus the `ideal' - Esther. The book of Esther is a vivid reflection of the inter-play of the dominant patriarchal ideology that was and is prevalent in every society. Such biblical texts have been often `misused' for enforcing inferior and submissive roles to women both in the society and church. However, a re-reading of the biblical accounts from the feminist/womanist perspective helps in uncovering the different roles and contributions women have made in the Bible, which will empower the women today to break away from the clutches of patriarchal oppressions.

The book is a humble attempt to understand the story of the Vashti and Esther in the Book of Esther, without any `patriarchal' bias; to bring forward the true identity of Vashti and Esther; and to seek in depth the contribution of women in terms of the various roles they played in the society of their own times; and subsequently, to examine how these reinterpretations will enable a broader understanding of women in the society today.




List of Abbreviations


1. Feminist Reading of the Bible

2. The Historical, Political, and Social Background of the Book of Esther

3. The Search for the Hidden Identity of Vashti and Esther : An Exegetical Study

4. Socio-Cultural Constructions of Women's Body : Its Implications for Re-Reading the Identity of Vashti and Esther in Today's Context



Dr. Atula Ao (Tsuedir) is from the Ao-Baptist Church of Nagaland and a native of Mokokchung, Nagaland. She did her theological education under the Senate of Serampore College (University), and holds a Doctorate in Old Testament studies for her research on - "Towards a Renewed Understanding of Health in Light of the Concept of Rapha, Shalom, and Marpe with Reference to Select Passages in the Prophetic Oracles of Hosea, Isaiah and Jeremiah."

Earlier she served as a theological educator in Nagaland, Karnataka (Bangarpet and Bangalore), and Visakhapatnam. Currently she is an Associate Professor in the Department of Old Testament at Allahabad Bible Seminary (Serampore University), Allahabad.

She also serves in the Executive Committee of Society for Biblical Studies in India (SBSI) as the Treasurer. She has contributed immensely through her writings in many journals and books published both nationally and internationally. She is married to Dr. Samuel George from Jammu & Kashmir, a Professor of Christian Theology.

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