This comic came out of a conversation between Maria and I about, you guessed it, Noah. I kept talking about “Noah’s wife,” until finally I said, “This is ridiculous. I’m sure she had a name! I want to know her name!” She does have a name. A Jewish text calls her Emzara. An Arabic work titled her Haykêl. In Cyprus she is Barthenos. In the Armenian tradition she is Nemzar, Noyemzar, Noyanzar. She has no lack of names, and yet we never hear her story. An account of the flood through her eyes is most likely relegated to the halls of academia to be gleaned through various manuscripts and “historical context.”
U.S. history, religion, culture is shaped by the narratives of man and men. Women are taught that we are supporting characters, helpers, not leaders. I do not think most men realize with what ease women are proscribed to footnotes and Other re-tellings. It is assumed a woman’s perspective will put a new lens on a situation, but one taking place from the shadows rather than the forefront. Where are the women in our stories? What are they doing? Why are they doing it? I want to at least KNOW THEIR NAMES!