Friday, November 9, 2012

Quick Feminist, (Or Anti) Thought Of The Day

Looking at this weeks Parasha, I noticed a pattern.

Rivka can go to the well, and fill her bucket by herself -

טז  וְהַנַּעֲרָ, טֹבַת מַרְאֶה מְאֹד--בְּתוּלָה, וְאִישׁ לֹא יְדָעָהּ; וַתֵּרֶד הָעַיְנָה, וַתְּמַלֵּא כַדָּהּ וַתָּעַל.16 And the damsel was very fair to look upon, a virgin, neither had any man known her; and she went down to the fountain, and filled her pitcher, and came up

Just one generation later, the roles are reversed:

י  וַיְהִי כַּאֲשֶׁר רָאָה יַעֲקֹב אֶת-רָחֵל, בַּת-לָבָן אֲחִי אִמּוֹ, וְאֶת-צֹאן לָבָן, אֲחִי אִמּוֹ; וַיִּגַּשׁ יַעֲקֹב, וַיָּגֶל אֶת-הָאֶבֶן מֵעַל פִּי הַבְּאֵר, וַיַּשְׁקְ, אֶת-צֹאן לָבָן אֲחִי אִמּוֹ.10 And it came to pass, when Jacob saw Rachel the daughter of Laban his mother's brother, and the sheep of Laban his mother's brother, that Jacob went near, and rolled the stone from the well's mouth, and watered the flock of Laban his mother's brother.

Jacob not only opens the well, he also waters the flock. 

The reversal is permanent:

טז  וּלְכֹהֵן מִדְיָן, שֶׁבַע בָּנוֹת; וַתָּבֹאנָה וַתִּדְלֶנָה, וַתְּמַלֶּאנָה אֶת-הָרְהָטִים, לְהַשְׁקוֹת, צֹאן אֲבִיהֶן.16 Now the priest of Midian had seven daughters; and they came and drew water, and filled the troughs to water their father's flock.
יז  וַיָּבֹאוּ הָרֹעִים, וַיְגָרְשׁוּם; וַיָּקָם מֹשֶׁה וַיּוֹשִׁעָן, וַיַּשְׁקְ אֶת-צֹאנָם.17 And the shepherds came and drove them away; but Moses stood up and helped them, and watered their flock.
So...did Rivka teach her children, and from there all the rest of the generations, proper manners? or perhaps Rivka was the last great feminist, and after her its all male domination at the well?

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