By Professor Janet Howe Gaines

An alien, a polytheist from Phoenicia, the biblical Queen Jezebel posed a significant risk to the steadiness of the Israelites' unmarried male deity. So strong used to be this hazard that writers in the course of the a while have portrayed her because the incarnation of female evil, and her identify has develop into synonymous with the misogynist view of girls as seductresses.Janet Howe Gaines argues that the bride of the Israelite king Ahab turned a handy scapegoat for biblical writers who portrayed her because the fundamental strength at the back of their nation's apostasy. The biblical account offers the queen as a assassin, as a disruptive strength for evil. Despised, the strong-willed Jezebel remains to be probably the most fascinating girls of the Bible.Music within the outdated Bones is a advisor to the everlasting Jezebel tale. the 1st a part of this illustrated research is a close research that explores the biblical story from conventional and feminist issues of view. Gaines then analyzes the methods authors in the course of the centuries have taken care of Jezebel. Her unburied bones grew to become misogynist relics for generations of writers who retold her tale as a caution in regards to the hazards of rebelling opposed to patriarchal society. From the sermons of John Knox to the novels of Margaret Atwood, from the poetry of Percy Shelley to the ballads of Boyz II males, from the drama of Racine to the Academy Award-winning movie starring Bette Davis, Jezebel has lengthy been the topic of inventive inquiry. Her picture because the undesirable woman of the Bible remains to be beneficial to writers. so much make the most her identify and evil acceptance to augment their admonitions to girls, yet a number of separate from from culture and overtly respect Jezebel's braveness and vigor.Placing the biblical account of Jezebel's doomed reign within the context of its xenophobic writers, Gaines proposes a brand new and extra sympathetic analyzing of the murdered queen whose physique used to be left to rot within the streets and whose recognition suffered a destiny much more egregious. instead of offering a good burial for the mangled bones of Jezebel, Gaines seeks to flesh them out and revivify them simply because, as she demonstrates, "there's song within the previous bones yet." 

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Extra resources for Music in the Old Bones: Jezebel Through the Ages

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Any attempt to reclaim Jezebel as a shining example of womanhood is a difficult task, to say the least. History has condemned her. Yet by reexamining biased biblical accounts and information compiled about the age in which she lived, we can search for traces of Jezebel's true nature. Who are the biblical purveyors of information on Jezebel, and why do they condemn her for all time? Are the authors or editors conveying factual material, an objective record of what occurred in Israel? Today we expect historians to provide an analysis of people, places, and events as they actually were and to interpret the significance of these things for our own age.

But that Jezebel made her royal husband an apostate from the religion of Yahweh, as the author of the Books of Kings would have us believe, is unlikely. (Bewer 49) Omri's capital at Samaria thus symbolizes religious tolerance. A temple to Baal may even have been part of the original building plan for the city. Another theory is that Ahab feels divided loyalties between his attachment to the ancient reli- Page 13 gious traditions of his people and his attraction to the ways of Canaan (Robinson 205).

She is a mortal queen born during the lifetime of Homer, some believe, and assassinated in Israel during Jehu's insurrection of 842 BCE. She is the influential daughter, wife, mother, mother-in-law, and grandmother of kings. Her power over men stems from her ability to tempt sexually, plot cleverly, and dominate completely. For two millenniain literature, art, and musicshe has epitomized wanton wrongdoing. Jezebel's story in the Hebrew Scriptures (also called the Old Testament) may be briefly summarized.

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