Francis Schmidt's works in various fields of religious studies (mainly ancient Judaism), can be characterized by three words: historiography, anthropological history, and comparatism. In that respect he placed himself in the continuation of previous French scholars, such as Maurice Halbwachs or Pierre Vidal-Naquet. Francis Schmidt also played an essential role in transmitting to a new generation of scholars the complex issues and debates concerning the Dead Sea scrolls and Qumranic research.
The papers offered in this volume share all the same interest in ancient religions and the methodological devices previously mentioned. They offer a rare example of a large comparatism between Assyrian, Greek, Roman, Jewish, and Christian approaches of some essential social or intellectual issues, by some of the most competent specialists in each field.
Christophe Batsch, PhD (La Sorbonne 2003), is teaching Biblical Hebrew, Aramean, and ancient Judaism at Lille University and ENS (Paris). He has published extensively on Second Temple Judaism and the Dead Sea scrolls, including
La guerre et les rites de guerre dans le judaïsme du deuxième temple (Brill 2005). Mǎdǎlina Vârtejanu-Joubert, PhD (EHESS, Paris 2001), is Researcher and teaches History of Ancient Israel (INALCO, Paris) and History of Mentalities (Bucharest University). She works on historical anthropology and epistemology of History and published Folie et société en Israël antique (L'Harmattan 2004).