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Title: Female Bodies and Dress in Second Temple Jewish Literature
Subtitle: The Case of Lamenting Women
Author(s): LIVNEH, Atar
Journal: Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses
Volume: 96    Issue: 3   Date: 2020   
Pages: 459-483
DOI: 10.2143/ETL.96.3.3288586

Abstract :
While the study of feminine bodies and dress and the ways in which these contribute to the construction of categories such as status and gender has flourished in classical studies in the past thirty years, the treatment of the theme in Hellenistic- and early-Roman-period Jewish corpora has been relatively neglected. References to women’s dress herein frequently occurring in a ritual context, the present paper discusses two lamenting protagonists – Esther in Add Esth C.13, and the Jewish brides in 3 Macc 4,6. The detailed analysis of these depictions demonstrates how Jewish works from this era blended biblical and Greek literary models pertaining to grieving women. It also exemplifies the way in which the posture and attire adopted by female mourners reflect social categories – Jewish identity and piety in the case of Esther and ideals of feminine modesty in the case of the brides.

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