Was Bathsheba the Original Bridget Jones?: A New Look at Bathsheba on Screen and in Biblical Scholarship
- Nashim: A Journal of Jewish Women's Studies & Gender Issues
- Indiana University Press
- Number 24, Spring 5773/2013
- pp. 53-73
- Additional Information
This article addresses the reception in text and cinema of the story told of the biblical character Bathsheba in 2 Samuel 11; specifically, it addresses the scholarly interpretations of Bathsheba and the portrayals of her story in the films David and Bathsheba (1951) and King David (1985), and in the NBC mini-series Kings (2009). I shall examine the ways in which each medium fills the gaps left by 2 Samuel 11 and investigate how the rise of feminism and feminist biblical scholarship has changed the reception of Bathsheba’s story. Recognizing that people participate in a reading that speaks to them on a personal level, the article concludes with a post-feminist interpretation of 2 Samuel 11, one that represents Bathsheba as an “ancient” Bridget Jones. Such a reading is missing, as made clear by the review of scholarship and film. This new interpretation is important, because it has the potential to resonate with today’s generation of young women.