Allegorising song of song's most erotic parts: Judaism, Calvinism, Lutheranism.

  • Eben Scheffler UNISA
Keywords: Song of songs, erotic, allegorism, Judaism, Calvinism, Lutheranism,


The contemporary debate regarding the neo-allegorical Song of Songs interpretation focuses more on its legitimacy than how it is done. If allegorical interpretation promotes uncontrollable subjective interpretation, this would especially surface when different religious traditions are involved. Moreover, if allegorical interpretation is done to avoid dealing with explicit sexuality in the Song, comparing texts from three diverse religious traditions on the more erotic parts of the Song has the potential to provide insight not only in the method of allegory but also in the contextuality and subjectivity of interpretation as such. The paper discusses examples from the Targum, the Calvinistic Dutch Statenbijbel and Luther’s lectures on Canticles.


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