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The Red Tent

A book by Anita Diamant

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Interesting Book I might add

  • Nov 27, 2005
  • by
When checking THE RED TENT out at the library, it seemed as if it was a departure from my ordinary reading choices. I enjoy romances, mystery, intrigue, historical fiction and humor. I was enchanted with the fact that the book contained all of these. I found that the women's' trips into the red tent were indeed, something of an interest.
The Red Tent by Anita Diamant is an engrossing, well-researched story with compelling and believable characters. It is especially gratifying to find a sympathetic, detailed, and believable account of an Old Testament woman's life set in this era and part of the world. The story is told from the point of Dinah, the only daughter of Jacob and Leah, written in her voice. This compelling story brings the women of the Old Testament out of the shadows of the patriarchy and allows us to become intimately acquainted with the matrilineal lineage of Genesis. We are invited into the "red tent:" the dwelling where women spend their moon time, give birth, and recover postpartum. She is raised by four different women, all wives of Jacob and becomes a midwife. We follow Rachel and Dinah through their careers as midwives. We experience Dinah's sorrow when her brothers avenge the "disgrace" of her royal marriage. And we follow Dinah into a new life in a new land and her subsequent happiness and fulfillment.
The book was a pleasure to read and probably even for non-religious feminist to read. The images are riveting. The characters are memorable. I wish I were a screenwriter because the Red Tent would make a good movie.

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More The Red Tent reviews
Quick Tip by . December 23, 2010
I wanted to love this book since it had been recommended to me by multiple people who shared my general taste in books, and they all loved it.  But I just couldn't "get into" this book.  I didn't care for the plot or the characters enough to really enjoy this book.  The writing style was very well done and the subject was interesting, but this book never really drew me in.  I'm curious what other people thought that read this one?
review by . May 31, 2001
At the risk of sounding sexist, I think this is a fine novel which will appeal to women of all ages. It is finely written, and thought provoking, and has all the real flavour of biblical times and places. But it is a novel of women, written by a woman, and in my opinion with the intention to be appealing to women.I sought out the relevant passages in my Bible, and there they were, just the bare bones of the story as Dinah suggests at the beginning of her narrative. But let me stress, this is the …
review by . September 28, 2000
Women are assigned to their rightful place in this biblical view of an early societal structure, depending on your point of view, of course.... Author Diamant has taken an interesting topic, a woman's position in the hierarchy of things, and given it life, following biblical outlines to form her story. I found the Red Tent and it's particular mystery a fascinating image, conjuring up both the ability of women to live in their own mileau, while also defining those monthly periods when a woman is …
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Jen-Jay AKA:JJI ()
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Married into the military for over a decade and it does has itpros andcons. The lifestyle is great and Ido enjoy it. I'm able to do things and see things that I thought I wouldn't dream of. My kids loves … more
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About this book


The red tent is the place where women gathered during their cycles of birthing, menses, and even illness. Like the conversations and mysteries held within this feminine tent, this sweeping piece of fiction offers an insider's look at the daily life of a biblical sorority of mothers and wives and their one and only daughter, Dinah. Told in the voice of Jacob's daughter Dinah (who only received a glimpse of recognition in the Book of Genesis), we are privy to the fascinating feminine characters who bled within the red tent. In a confiding and poetic voice, Dinah whispers stories of her four mothers, Rachel, Leah, Zilpah, and Bilhah--all wives to Jacob, and each one embodying unique feminine traits. As she reveals these sensual and emotionally charged stories we learn of birthing miracles, slaves, artisans, household gods, and sisterhood secrets. Eventually Dinah delves into her own saga of betrayals, grief, and a call to midwifery.

"Like any sisters who live together and share a husband, my mother and aunties spun a sticky web of loyalties and grudges," Anita Diamant writes in the voice of Dinah. "They traded secrets like bracelets, and these were handed down to me the only surviving girl. They told me things I was too young to hear. They held my face between their hands and made me swear to remember." Remembering women's earthy stories and passionate history is indeed the theme of this magnificent book. In fact, it's been said that The Red Tent is what the Bible might have ...

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ISBN-10: 0312195516
ISBN-13: 978-1864486797
Author: Anita Diamant
Genre: Religion & Spirituality
Publisher: Picador
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