Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Bedouin Culture in the Bible$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Clinton Bailey

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780300121827

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300121827.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM YALE SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.yale.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Yale University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in YSO for personal use.date: 17 May 2022

Desert Laws

Desert Laws

(p.107) 4 Desert Laws
Bedouin Culture in the Bible

Clinton Bailey

Yale University Press

To compensate for the traditional lack of centralized authority in the desert, Bedouin society developed a conventionalized legal system that included an individual’s right to use private might to deter and rectify violations perpetrated against him or his clan, whether homicide, the violation of women, or many lesser offenses. In keeping with the biblical portrayal of the earliest Israelites as desert-dwelling nomads, some of the laws ascribed to them are consistent with those of the nomadic Bedouin. This chapter identifies these laws, which mainly reflect the same absence of governmental law enforcement that always obliged Middle Eastern nomads to fend for themselves. To further appreciate the similarities between Bedouin and biblical law, this chapter explores the rationale and workings of the institutions of vengeance, the protection of the weak, and the peaceful resolution of conflict.

Keywords:   Laws without government, Vengeance, Protection of the weak, Peaceful resolution of conflict

Yale Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.