Scholarship on the Ethiopian eunuch focuses heavily on his foreign otherness, identifying him as the first gentile convert in the Acts of the Apostles. Such a reading tends not only to exoticize the Ethiopian but also to vilify the temple and, by extension, first-century Judaism, for their imagined rejection of this man. Using Saidiya Hartman’s work on “critical fabulation,” I propose instead that the Ethiopian be read as a Jew and, moreover, as an embodiment of the Jewish experiences of exile and enslavement to which his castrated body points. Such a reading supports the theme of the ingathering of dispersed Jews within the nascent Christian movement, which is central to Acts 1–8.

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