In this volume, Alice Ogden Bellis considers the book of Proverbs as a structural whole, the sages having designed it in such a way as to make positive statements about women and to undercut the negative ones. By grouping Proverbs together around common issues, the reader is called to consider the perennial moral questions of wealth and poverty, diligence and laziness, and integrity and corruption, as well as the relationship among these values. The result is much more complex and has greater depth than the random list of bromides that most of Proverbs is often thought to be. This volume opens up a multi-dimensional spiritual puzzle.
Alice Ogden Bellis is an ordained minister and professor of Hebrew Bible at Howard University School of Divinity in Washington, D.C. Her books include Helpmates, Harlots, and Heroes: Women's Stories in the Hebrew Bible (Westminster/John Knox, 1994 & 2007), Science, Scripture, and Homosexuality, with Dr. Terry Hufford (Pilgrim Press, 2002; Wipf and Stock, 2011), and Jews and Christians and the Theology of Hebrew Scriptures (co-edited with Joel Kaminsky, (SBL Symposium Series; Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, November 2000).
"A refreshing commentary on Proverbs that, in line with the aims of the series, provides a gender-sensitive set of diverse readings, with an eye to the ancient Israelite, as well as the modern context. A particularly innovative aspect is that one hears other voices than just that of Bellis herself. Both attention to the detail of the text and digging deep when needed, are accompanied by diverse viewpoints, spiritual moments, and creative thinking. A veritable 'wise' commentary for the twenty-first century."
Katharine Dell, St. Catharine's College, Cambridge