Masking and Unmasking Ourselves: Interpreting Biblical Texts on Clothing & Identity
Our clothes conceal our naked bodies but what do they reveal about our souls?
"Clothes assume a primary importance as a vehicle that suggests character, provides insights into a person's identity and even governs it…. But the problem is that if Oscar Wilde is correct that 'if you give a man a mask, he will tell you the truth,' then what exactly conveys the truth? Is it the person him or herself or is it the mask, the clothing that he or she wears, that reveals deeper images of self?"
—from the Introduction
In this highly engaging look at clothing and identity in the Bible, renowned teacher and scholar Norman Cohen presents ten Bible stories that involve clothing in an essential way, as a means of learning about the text, its characters and their interactions. But he also shows us how these stories help us confront our own life dramas, our own stories, ourselves. In doing so, he once again presents the Bible as a mirror, reflecting back to us our own personalities, ambivalences, struggles and potential for growth. By helping us uncover the garments of the Bible, Cohen shows us how to shed our own layers of insulation to reveal our authentic selves.