There is one thought on “Hannah’s Adversity and Peninnah’s Redemption”.

  1. I wonder though – should we consider this narrative in 1 Samuel as part of a genre of related stories, where an infertile wife is humiliated by the co-wife who has a lower status – there are several narratives that fit this genre. If this is so, then I think you might have it backwards. That is, Peninnah is written into the text with this role – and not elevated to it by later readers.

    The second issue (at least for me) comes from my reading of Christopher Jero’s article “Mother-Child Narratives and the Kingdom of God: Authorial Use of Typology as an Interpretive Device in Samuel–Kings” (BBR 25/2, 2015). Jero’s work extends the idea that the story of Hannah’s desire for a child is intended as a parallel to Israel’s desire for a king: neither has what they want, Hannah’s rival has several children while the Philistines have 5 kings, and so on. If Peninnah is being cast as a type for the Philistines and the relationship between Peninnah and Hannah is a type of the relationship between Israel and Philistia, it becomes more difficult to redeem Peninnah.

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