Title: The Red Tent
Publication Date: November 1st, 2005
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Author: Anita Diamant
Rating: 5/5 Stars
Summary: Her name is Dinah. In the Bible, her life is only hinted at in a brief and violent detour within the more familiar chapters of the Book of Genesis that are about her father, Jacob, and his dozen sons. Told in Dinah’s voice, this novel reveals the traditions and turmoils of ancient womanhood–the world of the red tent. It begins with the story of her mothers–Leah, Rachel, Zilpah, and Bilhah–the four wives of Jacob. They love Dinah and give her gifts that sustain her through a hard-working youth, a calling to midwifery, and a new home in a foreign land. Dinah’s story reaches out from a remarkable period of early history and creates an intimate connection with the past. Deeply affecting, The Red Tent combines rich storytelling with a valuable achievement in modern fiction: a new view of biblical women’s society.
Fave Cinnamon Rolls: N/A
Needed BROTP: N/A
Fave Quote: “If you want to understand any woman you must first ask about her mother and then listen carefully. Stories about food show a strong connection. Wistful silences demonstrate unfinished business. The more a daughter knows about the details of her mother’s life – without flinching or whining – the stronger the daughter.”
Actual Review: If you’ve ever read a historical document or non-fiction book, you will notice footnotes throughout them. NOwn ormally you glance at them and move along with the story. But Anita Diamant decided to take a footnote in one of the biggest religious documents in the World, The Bible, and to expand and let it tell it’s own tale. In the first book of the Bible, Genesis, there is a footnote about the rape of the daugter of Jacob and sister of Joseph. But in The Red Tent, well Dinah has her own story to tell. But first she says, to know the story of someone, you must first know the story of their mother(s). And that is where the tale begins.
The Red Tent tells the tale of jacob’s 4 wives, Leah, Rachel, Bilhah and Zilpah, and their journey through life. Of course once Dinah is born, it transistions from being her mother’s story into being her story. And her story is one of heartach, laughter, love, loss and so much more.
Now this story is a complete work of fiction but somehow it does still give a feel of reading about the history of my faith and my gender’s role in my faith. We see where women have their influence and we see how truly if not for women, men would be even more brutal.
The Red Tent, to me atleast, is a very intriguing fascinating read that I love to revisit time and time again. IT is like revisiting an old friend or family memeber. And it causes me to pause anytime I am in perusing the Genesis Book of the Bible.
I recommend this to anyone who wants to explore something somewhat religious but not a true religious book like things by Matthew Kelly.