I’m going to have to dig even more into the word into the word teshuqah (used in “thy desire [shall be] to thy husband” of Gen. 4:7, and “and his desire [is] toward me” Song of Songs 7:10). I’d planned to look into it anyway, after seeing a reference saying it should’ve been translated “turning”, not “desire”, but a blog I’m familiar with had more, in the past week or so.
- "What is the woman’s desire? How Susan Foh’s interpretation of Genesis 3:16 fed steroids to abusers. (Pt 1 of 2)"
- "The woman’s desire in Genesis 3:16 — let’s be consistent with the context and with actual life. (Pt 2 of 2)"
I’m not saying that the translation uncovered in those posts is necessarily correct—though it could well be. It just got me thinking more about those words and wanting to look more into the history, since I’ve always been told that “desire” was the historical, orthodox meaning and anything else was sinful secular egalitarianism and/or feminism speaking (with “egalitarianism” and/or “feminism” usually being misunderstood and misrepresented by straw men arguments).
That “desire” in Genesis 3:16 is used as justification for why a female is not to give any instruction to a male, yet according to Barbara Roberts in that first linked post, the translation of “teshuqah” as “desire” was popularized by a woman, Susan Foh, in the 1970s.
If that’s true, and “teshuqah"s meaning through history has been less definitively known as “desire”, through history, then that’s a serious case of hypocrisy. A translation of Genesis 3:16 used to “prove” the belief that women aren’t to give instruction to men or even make theological interpretation in general was popularized by a woman—and in the past fifty years, no less!
The same folks I’ve heard use Gen. 3:16 to help prove the aforementioned claims about women also tend towards dismissiveness with modern writers being too affected/secularized by the culture—and the lauded historical writers are read as if they were somehow immune to their own historical and cultural context. [scratches head]
So I’m gonna be digging into that, but in the meantime, those posts (and the comments) get quite interesting. :)