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xiii + 198 pp.

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Out of Paradise
Eve and Adam and their Interpreters
Edited by Bob Becking, Susan Hennecke

This volume explores the afterlives of Eve and Adam beyond the Genesis story. How did they become such a prominent part of mainstream Christian thought and theology—and Jewish and Muslim tradition as well—, and what forms did their story take as it was told and retold? To investigate the traces of Eve and Adam through the centuries is to discover a surprising variety of interpretations.

The chapters of this book come from eleven European scholars. Bob Becking writes on how the identity of the primaeval couple is constructed in Genesis, Geert van Oyen on Eve as a character in the New Testament, Willemien Otten on Adam and Eve in Augustine, Harm Goris on them in Aquinas, Theo Bell on them in Luther. Willem van Asselt examines the Pre-Adamites in the theology of Isaac La Peyrère, Heleen Zorgdrager considers Adam and Eve in the theology of Schleiermacher, Susanne Hennecke focuses on Karl Barth and Luce Irigaray looking at Michelangelo’s The Creation, Anne-Marie Korte on the Genesis story in a feminist theological perspective, Eric Ottenheijm on Eve and ‘women’s commandments’ in orthodox Judaism, and Karel Steenbrink on Muslim interpretations of their story.

Bob Becking is Senior Research Professor of Bible, Identity and Religion in the Faculty of Humanities, Utrecht University.
Susanne Hennecke is Lecturer in Systematic Theology at Utrecht University and leader of a research project in Systematic Theology at the Rheinische Friedrich Wilhelms University in Bonn, Germany.

Series: Hebrew Bible Monographs, 30
978-1-907534-00-3 hardback
Publication December 2010

Bob Becking
Once in a Garden: Some Remarks on the Construction of the Identity of Woman and Man in Genesis 2–3

Geert van Oyen
The Character of Eve in the New Testament: 2 Corinthians 11.3 and 1 Timothy 2.13-14

Willemien Otten
The Long Shadow of Human Sin: Augustine on Adam, Eve and the Fall

Harm Goris
Is Woman Just a Mutilated Male? Adam and Eve in the Theology of Thomas Aquinas

Theo M.M.A.C. Bell
Humanity is a Microcosm: Adam and Eve in Luther’s Lectures on Genesis (1535–1545)

Willem van Asselt
Adam and Eve as Latecomers: The Pre-Adamite Speculations of Isaac La Peyrère (1596–1676)

Heleen Zorgdrager
The Promise of a Salutary Difference: Adam and Eve in the Theology of Friedrich Schleiermacher

Susanne Hennecke
A Different Perspective: Karl Barth and Luce Irigaray Looking at Michelangelo’s The Creation of Eve

Anne-Marie Korte
Paradise Lost, Growth Gained: Eve’s Story Revisited. Genesis 2–4 in a Feminist Theological Perspective

Eric Ottenheijm
Eve and ‘Women’s Commandments’ in Orthodox Judaism

Karel Steenbrink
Created Anew: Muslim Interpretations of the Myth of Adam and Eve

This volume is a helpful compilation of essays and ultimately will serve its purpose in showing a diversity of thought with regard to how Eve and Adam have been interpreted throughout the years. The diachronic analysis of some of the selected historical figures is especially helpful (i.e., looking at the evolution of thought in one’s earlier works vis-à-vis one’s later works). Robert C. Koshow in Review of Biblical Literature.