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A Filipino Resistance Reading of Joshua 1:1-9
Lily Fetalsana Apura
Publication Date
March 2019


Go beyond historical questions

Lily Fetalsana-Apura reads Joshua 1:1–9, a text that has been used to legitimize Western conquests and imperialism, as a resistance text. Using contextual hermeneutics, the author reads the Former Prophets as countering and resisting impositions of surrounding imperial forces. Read in the context of four hundred years of colonial victimization and a continuing struggle against neocolonialism, Fetalsana-Apura interprets Joshua 1:1–9 as exhorting strength and courage against exploitation and domination by empire. She reveals the Western context and interests reflected in many books and commentaries and outlines instead how the text’s meaning can be translated as resisting empire to marginalized and exploited communities such as the Philippines.


  • A critique of Western biblical studies that exclusively focus on historical and theological readings
  • An outline of exegetical and hermeneutical procedures for contextual interpretation
  • Identification of themes and concepts in the Deuteronomistic History that subvert imperial ideology

Lily Fetalsana-Apura is an assistant professor in the Silliman University Divinity School in the Philippines. She teaches biblical studies courses.

This is International Voices in Biblical Studies 9. Download a printable standing order sheet to see other available volumes in the series and to give to your librarian to set up a standing order.