AWE (A Woman’s Experience)


Cassidy Crosby


sexual violence in the Bible, Biblical studies, women in the Bible


Singular brutality marks the unnamed woman’s story in Judges 19—perhaps the most disturbing and upsetting story in the Hebrew Bible, in which a group of men rape and then murder her. Our religious discussions therefore usually ignore this story, preferring to focus on tales that are not as difficult to deal with. However, ignoring the woman’s story does a disservice to her life and death, and to ourselves. If we believe the content in the Bible is divinely inspired, then we have a duty to search for the divine in this story. Perhaps the most important path comes in applying this story to our lives today and asking ourselves what it teaches us about our world. When I considered the unnamed woman’s story from this perspective, I noticed similarities between her life and the lives of hundreds of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.