The Noah Project

Rebuilding a sustainable world.

Coat Of Many Colors, Tale Of Many Textures

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The Dish

Giovanni_Andrea_de_Ferrari_-_'Joseph's_Coat_Brought_to_Jacob',_oil_on_canvas,_c._1640,_El_Paso_Museum_of_Art

Sam Sacks pens an extended essay on the biblical story of Joseph and his brothers, which he approaches from a literary perspective, claiming the tale “stands out for the perfection of its design, the mastery of its techniques, and the power of its climax.” One point he makes:

Perhaps what most stands out on the first reading of the Joseph story is the restrained use of the fantastical devices that haunt the rest of Genesis. God is here, but only tacitly, and the exact extent of His involvement is unclear to the characters and the audience alike. The story begins with a supernatural occurrence that is handled with such irreverence that it seems almost ironically deployed. Joseph is 17 and the most beloved son of Jacob, who has ostentatiously advertised his favoritism by giving Joseph the iconic coat of many colors. Joseph has become, as a result, a coddled…

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Author: Daniela

I was born in Croatia, at that time Yugoslavia. My family moved to the US when I was very young, but I still treasure the memories of my grandfather teaching me how to protect myself against the "evil eye," my grandmother shopping early every morning, at the open air market, to buy the freshest vegetables for the day's meals, and the traditions that were the underpinnings of our society. Someone once noted that "For all of us that want to move forward, there are a very few that want to keep the old methods of production, traditions and crafts alive." I am a fellow traveler with those who value the old traditions and folk wisdom. I believe the knowledge they possess can contribute significantly to our efforts to build a more sustainable world; one that values the individual over the corporation, conservation over growth and happiness over wealth.

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