Tate Gallery, London/Art Resource, NY
Although the Book of Ruth is thousands of years old, author Denise Dick Herr finds the dialogue in it very up-to-date. The bestseller Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus reports that men tend to view the world in terms of achievement and that, in their conversations, they seek to gain and maintain power, while women tend to view the world in terms of communities, and to speak in ways that encourage and maintain relationships. In closely examining the dialogues in the Book of Ruth, Herr finds these same insights apply to biblical times. Back then, however, it would be more appropriate, according to Herr, to say that men were from Judah, signifying their interest in power, prestige and wealth within their tribe, and that women were from Bethlehem, the town in Judah whose name means “House of Bread,” an image of nurture.