The Shalvi/Hyman Encyclopedia of Jewish Women

Features thousands of biographic and thematic essays on Jewish women around the world. Learn more

J. Cheryl Exum

J. Cheryl Exum is Professor of Biblical Studies at the University of Sheffield. She is the executive editor of the journal Biblical Interpretation and a director of Sheffield Phoenix Press. She is the author of numerous scholarly works on the Hebrew Bible, which include Tragedy and Biblical Narrative: Arrows of the Almighty ; Fragmented Women: Feminist (Sub)versions of Biblical Narratives; Plotted, Shot, and Painted: Cultural Representations of Biblical Women; Was sagt das Richterbuch den Frauen?; and, most recently, The Song of Songs: A Commentary. She is currently writing a book titled Cultural Industry: The Bible and the Arts.

Articles by this author

Delilah: Bible

Although Delilah’s story centers on her narrative with Samson, she is portrayed as independent from the men around her. She is named without the context of a male relative or spouse, although her identity remains unclear. Delilah accepts a bribe to betray Samson and expresses no doubt about her choice.

Mother of Samson: Bible

Though her name is never mentioned, Samson’s mother plays a vital role in shaping her son, one of the greatest among the Judges. When notified by a divine messenger that her son must be a Nazirite, she herself keeps the Nazirite vows, ensuring that he could grow up to become a hero to Israel.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "J. Cheryl Exum." (Viewed on September 27, 2023) <>.


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