Calling the Keeners: The Image of the Wailing Woman As Symbol of Survival in a Traumatized World
Claassens explores how the image of the keeners, or wailing women, who in Jeremiah 9:17–20 are called by God to raise a lament over the beleaguered people of Judah, serves as a powerful symbol of survival of an injured people seeking to come to terms with the tragedy that had befallen them. Employing insights from trauma theory, this article investigates the significance of the wailing women in Judah's process of dealing with extreme trauma as reflected in the book of Jeremiah. Moreover, Claassens suggests that the image of the wailing women calling upon people to weep and wail in times of tragedy offers resources for contemporary readers who themselves are facing personal or corporal trauma.
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