It’s a Bible Bash weekend again! My friends, Peterson and Liam, are at it again, bringing new life to an ancient text. This time, they are talking about Yael (also a little bit about Deborah and others) and Judges 4-5. This is a story that I touch on in chapter 20 of OtherWise Christian: A Guidebook for Transgender Liberation, but this Bible Bash adds additional insight and texture to the story. Continue reading “Jael/Yael (Judges 4-5), 2019”
There was a post in a group recently from someone who had “heard about” the Ethiopian eunuch and transgender people. While I’ve been highlighting books, I didn’t (yet) have a “list,” so here’s mine (for a more comprehensive list of related resources, see the bibliography of OtherWise Christian)!
Click through on the links for what I’ve written about each one.
One day, a long time ago, some guy named Peterson invited me out to have coffee in Philadelphia and to discuss his play about transgender Bible characters. Honestly, I was really skeptical. However, Peterson had done his homework, not only in terms of the Bible, but by talking extensively with people of transgender experience to really develop some awareness and cultural competence of our lived experience.
CORRECTION: While the “other” Ethiopian eunuch DOES
n’t appear in Transfigurations: Transgressing Gender in the Bible, I DIDN’T REALIZE IT!!
Here’s my advice watch BOTH the lecture version AND the performance version. There is some overlap, but you’ll miss some important insights if you only take the time to do one or the other.
Peterson Toscano has also done important work bringing this story to light. Ebed-melech wasn’t in the original performances (back in the day), but Toscano tells the story on the Transfigurations DVD in the lecture version, chapter 7, which debuted in the live performances around 2010 (according to Peterson).
Peterson Toscano’s one-man theatrical production has been extremely impactful in terms of raising awareness of gender variant characters in the Christian Bible. Peterson performed Transfigurations: Transgressing Gender in the Bible for live audiences beginning in 2007. He retired the production in 2016 and then released a DVD version in 2017–which I highly recommend as a study resource, both for individuals and for groups. The movie can be streamed on Amazon and there is also a study guide.
The problem with having dear friends and colleagues with a podcast is that you kind of want to profile them every time they release a new episode! Apparently, you’re going to have to get used to it, because Peterson Toscano and Liam Hooper are at at it again!
In chapter 16 (“A Flock of Eunuchs”) of OtherWise Christian: A Guidebook for Transgender Liberation, I mention Ashpenaz in passing as I describe the variety of eunuchs mentioned in the Hebrew Bible. Ashpenaz was the chief eunuch of the court in Baylon and took (the prophet) Daniel (of the lion’s den) under wing, along with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego (of the fiery furnace).
Peterson Toscano and Liam Hooper dig deeper into what we know about Ashpenaz in the 4th episode of their Bible Bash Podcast. While the Book of Daniel focuses a lot on Daniel, Peterson and Liam take the time to listen more carefully for what we might understand about Ashpenaz, rather than skimming right on past him as most do.
Continue reading “Ashpenaz the Chief Eunuch (Daniel 1), 2019”
Crossing Paths: Where Transgender and Religion Meet was published in 2003 as a 114 page PDF by the Unitarian Universalist Association’s Office of Bisexual, Gay, Lesbian and Transgender Concerns.
While this UUA resource is not exclusively Christian, Crossing Paths was one of the first readily available PDF format anthology in the “transgender spring.” The PDF was originally available on the UUA’s website. However, the copy we link to is a copy retained on the Transfaith website.