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Old Testament Essays

On-line version ISSN 2312-3621
Print version ISSN 1010-9919


OLOJEDE, Funlola. Women and the cry for justice in Old Testament court narratives: An African Reflection. Old testam. essays [online]. 2013, vol.26, n.3, pp.761-772. ISSN 2312-3621.

In the OT, the topos of "woman with a cause" has already been identified. Women went to great lengths to ensure that the names of their dead husbands were perpetuated, as in the case of Naomi-Ruth or Tamar, or they sought audience with the king to save loved ones.1 It is argued in this article that both within and beyond this topos, women are found crying out for justice. A consideration of narratives such as the hypothetical case of the Woman of Tekoa's son (2 Sam 14), the narratives about the two "harlots" (1 Kgs 3) and the account of the two women who ate their own children (2 Kgs 6), etcetera, shows that "women with a cause" often cried out on behalf of their children. By considering the socio-economic background of such OT narratives in relation to the socio-economic conditions in many parts of Africa today, the article makes a case for children in Africa under the threat of starvation, are orphaned by HIV/AIDS, and who are victims of poverty, dreaded diseases and illiteracy, to name but a few. It demonstrates, first, that the quest for social justice on the continent will have to begin with children, and that, second, this will only be attained when women in Africa, like those of the OT, cry out for justice on behalf of these children.

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