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Curse of Ham Race and Slavery in Early Judaism, Christianity and Islam

ISBN-10: 0691123705
ISBN-13: 9780691123707
Edition: 2004
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Description: How old is prejudice against black people? Were the racist attitudes that fueled the Atlantic slave trade firmly in place 700 years before the European discovery of sub-Saharan Africa? In this groundbreaking book, David Goldenberg seeks to discover  More...

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Book details

Copyright year: 2004
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Publication date: 8/7/2005
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 472
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.25" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 1.430
Language: English

How old is prejudice against black people? Were the racist attitudes that fueled the Atlantic slave trade firmly in place 700 years before the European discovery of sub-Saharan Africa? In this groundbreaking book, David Goldenberg seeks to discover how dark-skinned peoples, especially black Africans, were portrayed in the Bible and by those who interpreted the Bible--Jews, Christians, and Muslims. Unprecedented in rigor and breadth, his investigation covers a 1,500-year period, from ancient Israel (around 800 B.C.E.) to the eighth century C.E., after the birth of Islam. By tracing the development of anti-Black sentiment during this time, Goldenberg uncovers views about race, color, and slavery that took shape over the centuries--most centrally, the belief that the biblical Ham and his descendants, the black Africans, had been cursed by God with eternal slavery. Goldenberg begins by examining a host of references to black Africans in biblical and postbiblical Jewish literature. From there he moves the inquiry from Black as an ethnic group to black as color, and early Jewish attitudes toward dark skin color. He goes on to ask when the black African first became identified as slave in the Near East, and, in a powerful culmination, discusses the resounding influence of this identification on Jewish, Christian, and Islamic thinking, noting each tradition's exegetical treatment of pertinent biblical passages. Authoritative, fluidly written, and situated at a richly illuminating nexus of images, attitudes, and history,The Curse of Hamis sure to have a profound and lasting impact on the perennial debate over the roots of racism and slavery, and on the study of early Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

David M. Goldenbergis Isidore and Theresa Cohen Chair of Jewish Religion and Thought at the University of Cape Town, and Visiting Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania. He was formerly President of Dropsie College for Hebrew and Cognate Learning, Associate Director of the Annenberg Research Institute for Judaic and Near Eastern Studies, and Editor of "The Jewish Quarterly Review".

Acknowledgments
List of Abbreviations
Introduction
Images of Blacks One Biblical Israel: The Land of Kush
Biblical Israel: The People of Kush
Postbiblical Israel: Black Africa
Postbiblical Israel: Black Africans
The Color of Skin
The Color of Women
The Color of Health
The Colors of Mankind
The Colored Meaning of Kushite in Postbiblical Literature
History
Evidence for Black Slaves in Israel
At the Crossroads of History and Exegesis
Was Ham Black?
"Ham Sinned and Canaan was Cursed?!"
The Curse of Ham
The Curse of Cain
The New World Order: Humanity by Physiognomy
Conclusion Jewish Views of Black Africans and the Development of Anti-Black Sentiment in Western Thought
When is a Kushite not a Kushite? Cases of Mistaken Identity
Kush/Ethiopia and India
Notes
Glossary of Sources and Terms
Subject Index
Index of Ancient Sources
Index of Modern Scholars

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