Women and Gender in the Bible and the Ancient World TRS4112

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Critical Studies
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course will study in depth some of the narratives of female characters of the Bible and associated non-canonical text, and texts concerning gender and ethics. The approach will involve close exegetical reading and considering a variety of perspectives, including historical, literary, theological and ideological approaches. There will be a focus on feminist hermeneutics, intersectional theories and queer exegesis.


1x2hr seminar per week over 10 weeks as scheduled on MyCampus.


This is one of the Honours options in Theology and Religious Studies and may not run every year. The options that are running this session are available on MyCampus.

Requirements of Entry

Available to all students fulfilling requirements for Honours entry into Theology and Religious Studies, and by arrangement to visiting students or students of other Honours programmes who qualify under the University's 25% regulation.

Excluded Courses





Essay (2,500 words) - 45%

Essay (2,500 words) - 45%

Presentation of 10 minutes - 10%

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non-Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

This course will provide the opportunity to:

■ engage in close reading of selected texts about sex and gender from different divisions of the Bible and related texts;

■ relate biblical and related texts to a variety of religious and secular contexts;

■ discuss feminism, gender theory and queer theory and their intersections and applications in biblical scholarship;

■ become familiar with a range of theoretical interpretative approaches to texts.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ provide a rigorous analysis of the historical, cultural and literary character of specific biblical and apocryphal texts about sex, gender and their intersections;

■ read and understand key primary and secondary texts and present a clearly argued analysis of the positions taken in these texts;

■ offer a critical and in-depth analysis of a variety of interpretive approaches to the representation of sex and gender in biblical texts;

■ reflect critically and comparatively about ideologies in biblical texts and in their afterlives;

■ present complex arguments in written and oral form.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.