“Oh, that I Had Wings Like a Dove…” Psalm 55 and Breaking the Silence about Violence against Women


Psalm 55

How to Cite

Klopper, F. . (2021). “Oh, that I Had Wings Like a Dove…” Psalm 55 and Breaking the Silence about Violence against Women. Old Testament Essays, 34(1), 285–299. Retrieved from https://ote-journal.otwsa-otssa.org.za/index.php/journal/article/view/475


In this article, the author looks at suffering in Ps 55 from the perspective of women as victims of sexual violence. The research problem and gap addressed concern residual questions regarding the world of the text and the setting of the lament in earlier stages of its redaction and composition. The discussion takes its inspiration from a reading of Ulrike Bail wherein the speaker of Ps 55 appears to be resorting to forms and contents of expression associated with the trauma of rape. In supplementary relation to this, a reader response approach is adopted aiming to show how a female persona as the projected narrator and her language of distress relate to conceptions of sexual assault. The study thus offers confirmatory findings from Ps 55 of how women use words and ways of lamentation to break the silence and seek to cope with the devastating physical and psychological effects of rape.



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