Queer & Trans Readings of the Bible Bibliography

I belong to a few – mostly online – lgbtqia+ support groups. Many in the lbgtqia+ find it weird that I can be transgender and a biblical studies scholar. I have to “come out” as a Bible scholar to them. Many have been rejected by their faith communities, and so find it surprising when I tell them that feminist readings of the Bible are over a century old and queer readings a few decades old. We are here! But we are perhaps invisible to the wider public. So I am compiling this bibliography of Queer & Trans Readings of the Bible primarily for my lgbtqia+ fellow travelers. While I may include some technical scholarship here and there, I will mostly be focusing on more accessible works. In addition, while many of these works rely upon certain gender theorists (e.g., Judith Butler) or theories, I will be mostly focusing on works that bring lgbtqia+ issues, concerns, perspectives, resonances (my favorite term) alongside biblical materials. (This is an evolving list; I will periodically update it.)

Queer Readings

These readings are largely focused on queer approaches to biblical materials. Some include transgender issues, but they are not the focus.

  • Brooten, Bernadette J. Love Between Women: Early Christian Responses to Female Homoeroticism. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996.
  • Carden, Michael. Sodomy: A History of a Christian Biblical Myth. London: Equinox, 2004.
  • Goss, Robert E., and Mona West, eds. Take Back the Word: a queer reading of the Bible. Cleveland: Pilgrim Press, 2000.
  • Hoke, Jimmy. Feminism, Queerness, Affect, and Romans: Under God? SBL Press, 2021.
  • Lopez, Davina C. Apostle to the Conquered: Reimagining Paul’s Mission. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2008.
  • Marchal, Joseph A. Appalling Bodies: Queer Figures Before and After Paul’s Letters. Oxford University Press, 2020.
  • Marchal, Joseph A. The Politics of Heaven: Women, Gender, and Empire in the Study of Paul. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2008.
  • Martin, Dale B. Sex and the Single Savior: Gender and Sexuality in Biblical Interpretation. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2006.
  • Nissinnen, Martti. Homoeroticism in the Biblical World: A Historical Perspective. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1998.
  • Townsley, Gillian. The Straight Mind in Corinth: Queer Readings Across 1 Corinthians 11:2-16. SBL Press, 2017.
  • West, Mona, and Robert E. Shore-Goss, eds. The Queer Bible Commentary. 2nd Edition. SCM Press, 2022.

Transgender-Focused Queer Readings

These are readings that are transgender-focused approaches to biblical materials (or, as in the case of Mollenkott and Sabia-Tanis, trans-focused theology with some biblical interpretation).

  • Dyer, Rebekah. “Envisioning Fire Theophanies as Gender-Neutral Expressions of Selfhood.” Journal for International Biblical Studies 1.2 (Spring 2020): 40-60.
  • Hornsby, Teresa J., and Deryn Guest. Transgender, Intersex, and Biblical Interpretation. SBL Press, 2016.
  • Ladin, Joy. “In the Image of God, God Created Them: Toward a Trans Theology.” Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion 34.1 (2018): 53-58.
  • Ladin, Joy. Soul of a Stranger: Reading the Torah from a Transgender Perspective. Brandeis University Press, 2018.
  • Mollenkott, Virginia Ramey. Omnigender: A Trans-Religious Approach. Cleveland: Pilgrim Press, 2001.
  • Musa, Aysha W. “Jael Is Non-Binary; Jael is Not a Woman.” Journal for International Biblical Studies 1.2 (Spring 2020): 97-120.
  • Nichols, Jane, and Rachel Stuart. “Transgender: A Useful Category of Biblical Analysis?” Journal for International Biblical Studies 1.2 (Spring 2020): 1-24.
  • Ross, Samuel. “A Transgender Gaze at Genesis 38.” Journal for International Biblical Studies 1.2 (Spring 2020): 25-39.
  • Sabia-Tanis, Justin. Trans-Gender: Theology, Ministry, and Communities of Faith. Cleveland: Pilgrim Press, 2018.
  • Sellew, Melissa Harl. “Readings the Gospel of Thomas from Here: A Trans-Centred Hermeneutic.” Journal for Interdisciplinary Biblical Studies 1.2 (Spring 2020): 61-96.
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