College Teaches Class Called “Queering The Bible”, It’s Even Worse Than It Sounds

Do you remember the part of the bible that discusses how amazing being transgender is? Me neither. However Swarthmore College is teaching a religious course called “Queering The Bible.”

“This course surveys queer and trans* readings of biblical texts. It introduces students to the complexity of constructions of sex, gender, and identity in one of the most influential literary works produced in ancient times,” says the course description.

“By reading the Bible with the methods of queer and trans* theoretical approaches, this class destabilizes long held assumptions about what the bible–and religion–says about gender and sexuality,” it says.

 This class is the only bible-centric class being taught at the college next semester. The professor, Gwynn Kessler describes herself. “My research focuses on rabbinic interpretation of Scripture, or midrash, and more specifically on rabbinic theology and rabbinic constructions of gender and identity. I am also interested in the broader field of Religious Studies, and in exploring the place(s) of Jewish interpretation and Judaism within this larger discourse. Finally, my work is situated within, and suffused with, postmodern, feminist, and queer theoretical approaches,” she writes.

“My teaching interests and experience encompass classes on the Hebrew Bible, Midrash, Talmud, Jewish History, Jewish Literature, Judaism and Gender, Judaism and Ecology, Ritual and Performance Studies, Feminist Theology, Religion and Gender, and Method and Theory in Religious Studies. Many of my courses draw upon, and integrate, literary, historical, anthropological, and comparative approaches to the study of religion and textual traditions,” she writes.


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