Interpreting Judean Pillar Figurines: Gender and Empire in Judean Apotropaic Ritual

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Mohr Siebeck, Sep 11, 2014 - Religion - 608 pages
Judean pillar figurines are one of the most common ritual objects from Iron II Israel. These small terracotta females have received a great deal of scholarly attention, appearing in discussions about Israelite religion, monotheism, and women's practice. Yet the figurines are still poorly understood. Modern interpreters connect the figurines with goddesses, popular religion, and females but often base their arguments on the presumed significance of the figurines' breasts and the Hebrew Bible. In contrast, archaeological context is frequently overshadowed or oversimplified. In an attempt to address these problems and to understand figurine rituals in Jerusalem, Erin Darby evaluates relevant Near Eastern texts, archaeological context, biblical texts, and Near Eastern iconography. She also explores changes in figurine iconography, the function of the figurines in rituals of healing and protection and the gender of figurine users.
 

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Contents

Introduction and Methodology
1
Interpretive Trends
34
NeoAssyrian Figurine Rituals
61
Kenyons Jerusalem
98
Shilohs Jerusalem
143
Terracotta Figurines and Jerusalemite Pottery
183
The Southeastern Hill and Its Regional
213
Clay and Idols in the Hebrew Bible
259
Style and Iconography
303
Figurines in Historical Context
367
Final Summary and Conclusions
398
Appendix A
409
Appendix B
532
Source Index
579
Copyright

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About the author (2014)

Born 1978; studied Hebrew Bible and Near Eastern archaeology, Duke University in Durham, North Carolina; since 2012 Assistant Professor of Religious Studies, University of Tennessee in Knoxville, Tennessee.

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