by Susan Weidman Schneider

Genesis Revisited

Coming soon to a television set near you is a chance to eavesdrop on conversations about Bible stories you may not have thought about since Hebrew school. “Genesis: A Living Conversation” is a ten-part series on public television premiering October 16. A brief passage from Genesis is read aloud, then a rotating assortment of talkative clergy and theologians, social scientists, poets, artists and literary critics freely explore its themes and direction. The series includes some of the relatively few biblical stories to name women—for example, Sarah and Hagar (“A Family Affair,” airing initially on November 17). For a feminist audience, what makes the shows special is the presence of equal numbers of women and men in the conversation. Pay special attention to the unfailingly acute biblical and literary scholar Avivah Zornberg, who responds to the Cain and Abel story (“The First Murder”) with a web of literary allusion and a thorough knowledge of the Hebrew original, then adds, “God makes man from clay. The object teaches the creator.”

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