Fox Byte 5775 #9: VaYeshev (And He Settled)

וַיֵּשֶׁב

Two recent popular adaptations of the Joseph story.  Top:  Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.  Photo from a from a review by Julie Peterson, Phoenix New Times, July 19, 2013, of a production by the Arizona Broadway Theatre starring Ryan Michael Crimmons.  Bottom:  Joseph:  King of Dreams, a 2000 Dreamworks production starring Ben Affleck (picture from dreamworks.wikia.com.)
Two recent adaptations of the Joseph story.  Top:  Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.  Photo from a from a review by Julie Peterson, Phoenix New Times, July 19, 2013, of a production by the Arizona Broadway Theatre starring Ryan Michael Crimmons.  Bottom:  Joseph: King of Dreams, starring Ben Affleck (picture from DreamWorks Wiki).

Everyone knows about Joseph and his fancy coat.  He was the one with the dreams of greatness about how his brothers and his parents would bow down to him.  Joseph was the favorite son, the one his father loved best, and the one who seemed to rub that in the faces of his brothers.  That’s why they hated him and tried to kill him, and that’s why they sold him into Egypt as a slave.  Everyone knows that story, and they know how Joseph was thrown into prison because his Egyptian master’s wife falsely accused him of attempted rape.  They know what happened next:  that while in prison Joseph interpreted the dreams of Pharaoh’s chief butler and baker, and eventually that’s what opened the way for him to get out of prison.  Even people who have never read the Bible know Joseph’s story.  It makes for good theater, as Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber and Sir Tim Rice showed us with Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and as we learned with the DreamWorks animated movie, Joseph:  King of Dreams.  That’s why I’m not going to write about Joseph.  I’m going to write about the awkward and uncomfortable story of his older brother Judah.

Please click here to contninue reading