Der Körper als Gefäß. Eine Studie zur visuellen Anthropologie des Alten Orients

Schroer, Silvia; Kipfer, Sara (2015). Der Körper als Gefäß. Eine Studie zur visuellen Anthropologie des Alten Orients. Lectio difficilior - europäische elektronische Zeitschrift für feministische Exegese, 2015(1) Theologische Fakultät, Universität Bern

kipfer_schroer_der_koerper_als_gefaess.pdf - Published Version
Available under License BORIS Standard License.

Download (1MB) | Preview

The perception of the human body as container is widespread in cognitive linguistics, psychology and anthropology and is estimated to be universal. But what can we say about the specific context of the Hebrew Bible as well as Ancient-Near-Eastern texts and material culture, and more especially about anthropomorphic vessels in the Levant? Biblical, Egyptian and Mesopotamian texts compare the human body with pottery in order to emphasize its status of having been created (Geschöpflichkeit) on the one hand, and its fragility (Zerbrechlichkeit) on the other. Not in every case does the metaphor refer to an individual. Very often, however, it is used with relation to groups of people (nations) and requires particular caution when it comes to drawing a conclusion about the embodiment. The archaeological-iconographic record demonstrates that the human body, especially the female body, was imagined as a container. The fact that vessels in the shape of female bodies are the majority can partly be explained with the association between container and pregnancy. This essay aims at stimulating the discussion about embodiment in the Ancient Near East, concepts of emotion the body as a container in the Hebrew Bible, and its relation to the material culture.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


01 Faculty of Theology > Department of Protestant Theology [discontinued] > Institute of Biblical Studies [discontinued] > Old Testament [discontinued]

UniBE Contributor:

Schroer, Silvia and Kipfer, Sara




Theologische Fakultät, Universität Bern




Nancy Rahn

Date Deposited:

04 Feb 2016 09:50

Last Modified:

08 Feb 2016 13:34




Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback