Re: Gen 3:16 LXX & Susan T. Foh

From: Bill Barton (
Date: Wed Jun 07 2000 - 23:56:31 EDT

Clayton Bartholomew wrote:

CB>25 years ago Susan T. Foh created a minor ripple in the biblical studies
world by publishing a paper called "What Is the Woman's Desire?" WTJ 37
(1975) 374-383. Foh abandoned the traditional understanding of teshuqah
(see U. Cassuto, Genesis) and suggested that we should understand teshuqah
as a woman's desire to dominate and control her man. Foh uses Gen 4:7 as a
major element in her argument.>

The context of Genesis 3 is a breakdown in relationships: between God and
man; between man and beast (serpent); and between male and female. Hence
it seems reasonable to interpret "desire" in a sense that is consistent
with conflict.

CB>I have not seen anyone successfully combine the LXX reading APOSTROFH
for teshuqah (Gen 3:16 & Gen 4:7) with Susan T. Foh's reading of this

The Hebrew teshuqah indicates a desire, either negative or positive. The
LXX translator apparently reads teshuqah in context as a negative desire.
Hence rather than use a neutral gloss such as epithumia (which can be
negative or positive), he uses apostrophe ("turning away" i.e. "aversion"),
which is indicative of conflict.

In Song of Solomon 7:11 the translator takes a similar tack. Here he
apparently reads teshuqah in context as a positive desire, hence he uses
the gloss epistrophe, a "turning toward," which is indicative of affection.

Bill Barton

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