This year I've been reading the Bible through. Each night I read a portion of the Old Testament, the prophets and then the New Testament.
A while ago my mother gave me a book that dissected the Bible's treatment of women so I already knew portions of the Old Testament were hair-raising. Seriously. There's one story where the entire nation of Israel puts aside wives who were foreign born...and all their children...in an effort to "cleanse" the nation. So picture hundreds of families torn apart, women and children cast aside, so the men could be pure. Where did all those people go? The book doesn't say.
A Year of Biblical Womanhood, which comes out today. Like the title states, Rachel spent a year attempting to comply with as many of the Old Testament rules for women as possible...including living in a tent during her period, covering her head during worship, and calling her husband "master". She's a Christian so this wasn't an attempt to satirize faith, but to examine the myth of Christian womanhood and discover what was really required of Hebrew women. Of course, some in the Christian evangelical camp are already up in arms - with one notable bookstore refusing to carry it - but many are already using the opportunity to reexamine what the Bible actually is vs. what they want it to be. Rachel's book sounds like a thought-provoking read.
What books have made you think lately?