Religious studies: second assignment

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  Modern scholars have wondered about the purpose of the story of Dinah.  It has no apparent etiological message, and no long term consequences.  Dinah herself is not reported to have become pregnant as a result of the rape; in fact she is never heard of again.  The slaughter of the Shechemites did not bring about any act of reprisal.  The incident appears to be referred to only once more in the Bible, when Jacob, near death, gathers his sons together to offer each his fatherly blessing.  For Simeon and Levi, however, he has no blessing to give; all he can think of, apparently, is their cruel act of revenge years earlier:

 Simeon and Levi are brothers; 

 weapons of violence are their swords. 

  May I never come into their council; 

 may I not be joined to their company— 

 for in their anger they killed men, 

 and at their whim they hamstrung oxen. 

 Cursed be their anger, for it is fierce, 

 and their wrath, for it is cruel! 

 I will divide them in Jacob, 

 and scatter them in Israel.

 Gen 49:5-7

What, in your opinion, is the purpose does the story of Dinah serve?

Is it a story of a breach of honor?

Is it a story about rape?

Is it an etiological story?

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