Women at the time of the Bible by Miriam Feinberg Vamosh seeks to cover every aspect of a woman’s life in Bible times. This is a difficult undertaking as it covers a long period of time. The Bible itself only gives us glimpses of women’s roles since the Bible’s purpose is not to give us a social history.
Miriam Feinberg Vamosh gives us insights into what life might have been like for women. She begins with home life and the work women did around the home, not just to provide food and raise children, but also to make clothing. Marriage and childbirth customs, women’s roles in worship and music, their access (or lack of it) to education and leadership roles are all discussed. There seems to be such a wide variation due to the expanse of time that is covered in the book, plus the variation depending on the geographical location makes it hard to form any solid conclusions. Some women seemed to have a lot of freedom to pursue their own interests while others had very little.
The book is interspersed with character summaries of particular Biblical women with more information about their life and times. Towards the end of the book there is a circular list of all the women mentioned in the Bible and it’s a surprise to see how long this list is.
An interesting read with some helpful photos.