The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


The (big) Red Tent

Interest in biblical novel keeps growing

I've noted with interest the presence of Anita Diamant's novel The Red Tent (Picador USA) on various best-seller lists: I didn't review it in 1998 when it came out — a significant omission. But its building popularity is a good reason to make amends.

The book tells the story of the Old Testament's Dinah, daughter of Jacob and Leah, who receives only a brief mention in Genesis 34. The author has vividly imagined what Dinah's life might have been like in full. A central focus is the red tent where the women of the family gather during their cycles of menses, birthing and illness. The group consists of Dinah and her "four mothers," Jacob's four wives.

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March issue

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