Monday, February 07, 2011

The bible reading of Exodus Chapters 21-24 Part I: The rights of a woman.

Exodus (21:7-11)

I do apologize for being a week behind as this was read 9 days ago.

This weeks reading is very interesting however and 4 different area's I wanted to discuss.

Firstly, is the rights of a woman that are discussed in Exodus 21:7-11. It discusses that if a woman is sold to you because was poor and she in not pleasing in your eyes you can't treat her like you would treat a man and you can't sell her but have to let her be redeemed. That is the JPS tanach translation which according to Nehemiah Gordon. Wondering what the difference is in reality with any of the translations. If people think this doesn't go on today sadly it does in countries like North Korea and other very poor countries and clearly the torah recognizes a woman being vulnerable when she has a family who is poor and has no connections.

Secondly, it talks about the rights of a woman if he marries a second wife that he has to give her food, clothing, and conjugal rights which would obviously apply to her first wife I would think. According to Artscrol it is sexual intimacy which I'm not sure what conjugal rights means. Does that mean general proper relations between husband and wife as that what is seems to be defined as according to the dictionary. Artscroll definition is very narrow. So if you feed, cloth and have sexual intimacy but nothing else that is ok. Shouldn't there be some kind of emotional connection.

Also there are times when sexual intimacy may be hard because of tough times and of course the purpose of is to bring children into the world if the woman is in that portion of her life and not just for pleasure which is wrong for both men and women but maybe that is why if a man can't do this and have more children he shouldn't marry a second woman.

What exactly does conjugal rights mean? Just wondering as I read a short definition.

Of course the EEOC makes it hard for men to fulfill their obligations.

1 comment:

SouthernBelle Rivky said...

Your definition is correct.

Are you refering to emotional connection for female or male or both?? Sounds more like a business arrangement.

My understanding of multiple wives was that it actually wasn't practiced that much. I'm not so about concubine arrangements though. It required a good deal of wealth to be able to support multiple wives and children from each, so regular folks didn't really have this option. I've heard that every wife had to be treated equally in order to prevent mistreatment and jealousy. i.e. a man couldn't buy nice extra such as jewelry for one, without also giving to other wives.