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Slandering the Jew: Sexuality and Difference in Early Christian Texts…
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0812245202, Hardcover)
As Christian leaders in the first through fifth centuries embraced ascetic interpretations of the Bible and practices of sexual renunciation, sexual slander—such as the accusations Paul leveled against wayward Gentiles in the New Testament—played a pivotal role in the formation of early Christian identity. In particular, the imagined construct of the lascivious, literal-minded Jew served as a convenient foil to the chaste Christian ideal. Susanna Drake examines representations of Jewish sexuality in early Christian writings that use accusations of carnality, fleshliness, bestiality, and licentiousness as strategies to differentiate the "spiritual" Christian from the "carnal" Jew. Church fathers such as Justin Martyr, Hippolytus of Rome, Origen of Alexandria, and John Chrysostom portrayed Jewish men variously as dangerously hypersexual, at times literally seducing virtuous Christians into heresy, or as weak and effeminate, unable to control bodily impulses or govern their wives.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:19 -0400)
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