Jacob encounters Job, on the streets of Manila

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Abstract

This presentation focuses on two paintings by the Filipino theologian and activist, Emmanuel Garibay: Jacob wrestling with G*d (2008) and Job (2008). The juxtaposition of the artworks raises critical questions about both biblical characters: How could Job, a wealthy slave-owner, be blameless and righteous? Why should Jacob, who cheated his brother, father and uncle, and prevailed over G*d (whom Garibay portrays as a riot police), respect anyone? What are the consequences of identifying with Job (especially in the works of liberation critics) and Jacob? The inspiration for Garibay's works is the struggles of people in the corrupt and violent contexts of the Philippines, and I (conditioned by oceanic upbringing and crosscultural migration) will read his works contra-textually with the biblical account. The upshot is a call for reexamination of traditional perspectives and readings, for solidarity with demonstrators and activists in the struggles of oppressed people, and for the courage to confront and question G*d. The presentation will cross several contexts, from the bible to the streets of Manila and Gaza, and the rising seas in Oceania, from literary to visual imagination, and telling, from the stories of Jacob and Job to the story of Jonah, and more.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSociety of Biblical Literature 2009
EditorsDaniel Patte
Place of PublicationUSA
PublisherSBL Press
Pages1-16
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 2009
EventSociety of Biblical Literature Conference - New Orleans, USA, New Zealand
Duration: 21 Nov 200924 Nov 2009

Conference

ConferenceSociety of Biblical Literature Conference
CountryNew Zealand
Period21/11/0924/11/09

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