A King and a Fool?

The Succession Narrative as a Satire

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Virginia Miller

In A King and a Fool? The Succession Narrative as a Satire Virginia Miller applies a new version of Douglas Muecke’s taxonomy of irony to the Succession Narrative. She argues that the narrative in 2 Samuel and 1 Kings has the essential feature of satire, namely, a pervasive sense of pejoratively critical irony. By her account, King David is the object of ironic attack, and therefore, an object of condemnation. Given that the primary purpose of satire is reform, Miller claims that the purpose of the Succession Narrative is a call for reform in the leadership of Israel.

Das Konzil von Chalcedon und die Kirche

Konflikte und Normierungsprozesse im 5. und 6. Jahrhundert

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Sandra Leuenberger-Wenger

In Das Konzil von Chalcedon und die Kirche Sandra Leuenberger-Wenger offers a new perspective on the council of Chalcedon, analyzing the rich material of its acts. Leuenberger-Wenger shows the entanglement of the Christological debate with other fields of conflict concerning the status and authority of different episcopal sees and of monasticism in the church. The study emphasizes the importance of the traditionally neglected second part of the council with its canons and resolutions and argues that these regulations had a deep impact on the structures of the church as well as on the reception of the council and its definition of faith. The evaluation of a wide range of sources places the refusal of the definition of faith in the broader context of the transformation processes of the Roman Empire in Late Antiquity and the rejection of an increasingly institutionalized Byzantine Church.

In Das Konzil von Chalcedon und die Kirche entwirft Sandra Leuenberger-Wenger anhand der Konzilsakten ein neues Bild von der Bedeutung dieses Konzils für die Kirche. Sie zeigt die Verknüpfung des christologischen Streits mit weiteren kirchlichen Konfliktfeldern wie dem Status und der Autorität einzelner Bischofssitze und des Mönchtums. Die Untersuchung betont die Bedeutung des zweiten Konzilsteils für die Entwicklung der Kirche und macht deutlich, wie die Regulierungen auf kirchenpolitischer und struktureller Ebene die Rezeption des Konzils entscheidend mitbestimmten. Die Auswertung eines breiten Quellenmaterials verortet das Konzil und seine schwierige Rezeption in den spätantiken Transformationsprozessen des Römischen Reichs im Übergang zum Mittelalter und deutet die Konflikte um die Glaubensdefinition im Horizont der umfassenderen Ablehnung einer zunehmend institutionalisierten byzantinischen Reichskirche.

Religion in Ephesos Reconsidered

Archaeology of Spaces, Structures, and Objects

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Edited by Daniel Schowalter, Sabine Ladstätter, Steven J. Friesen and Christine Thomas

Religion in Ephesos Reconsidered provides a detailed overview of the current state of research on the most important Ephesian projects offering evidence for religious activity during the Roman period. Ranging from huge temple complexes to hand-held figurines, this book surveys a broad scope of materials. Careful reading of texts and inscriptions is combined with cutting-edge archaeological and architectural analysis to illustrate how the ancient people of Ephesos worshipped both the traditional deities and the new gods that came into their purview. Overall, the volume questions traditional understandings of material culture in Ephesos, and demonstrates that the views of the city and its inhabitants on religion were more complex and diverse than has been previously assumed.

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Edited by Claudia D. Bergmann and Benedikt Kranemann

Ritual Dynamics in Jewish and Christian Contexts investigates questions that arise in modern ritual studies concerning Jewish and Christian religious communities: How did their religious rituals develop? Where did different ritual communities and their ritual texts interact? How did religious communities and their authoritative texts respond to change, and how did change influence religious rituals? The volume is a product of the interdisciplinary and international research efforts taken by the Research Centre “Dynamics of Jewish Ritual Practices in Pluralistic Contexts from Antiquity to the Present” at the Universität Erfurt (Germany) and unites the voices of important senior and emerging scholars in the field. It focuses on antiquity and the medieval period but also considers examples from the early modern and modern period in Europe

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Edited by Dr. Benedikt Eckhardt

In Private Associations and Jewish Communities in the Hellenistic and Roman Cities, Benedikt Eckhardt brings together a group of experts to investigate a problem of historical categorization. Traditionally, scholars have either presupposed that Jewish groups were “Greco-Roman Associations” like others or have treated them in isolation from other groups. Attempts to begin a cross-disciplinary dialogue about the presuppositions and ultimate aims of the respective approaches have shown that much preliminary work on categories is necessary. This book explores the methodological dividing lines, based on the common-sense assumption that different questions require different solutions. Re-introducing historical differentiation into a field that has been dominated by abstractions, it provides the debate with a new foundation. Case studies highlight the problems and advantages of different approaches.

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Jonathan E Soyars

In The Shepherd of Hermas and the Pauline Legacy, Jonathan E. Soyars traces the influence of Pauline literary traditions upon one of the most widely attested and influential apocalyptic texts from early Christianity. Scholarship largely considers Hermas to have known very little about Pauline letters, but by looking beyond verbatim quotations Soyars discovers extensive evidence of his adoption, adaptation, and synthesis of identifiable Pauline material in the Visions, Mandates, and Similitudes sections. Hermas emerges as a Pauline interpreter who creatively engages topics and themes developed within and across the Pauline letters through time. These results reconnect the Shepherd with early Paulinism and extend reconstructions of the sphere of Pauline influence in the second century C.E.

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Edited by David Frankfurter

In the midst of academic debates about the utility of the term “magic” and the cultural meaning of ancient words like mageia or khesheph, this Guide to the Study of Ancient Magic seeks to advance the discussion by separating out three topics essential to the very idea of magic. The three major sections of this volume address (1) indigenous terminologies for ambiguous or illicit ritual in antiquity; (2) the ancient texts, manuals, and artifacts commonly designated “magical” or used to represent ancient magic; and (3) a series of contexts, from the written word to materiality itself, to which the term “magic” might usefully pertain.

The individual essays in this volume cover most of Mediterranean and Near Eastern antiquity, with essays by both established and emergent scholars of ancient religions.

In a burgeoning field of “magic studies” trying both to preserve and to justify critically the category itself, this volume brings new clarity and provocative insights. This will be an indispensable resource to all interested in magic in the Bible and the Ancient Near East, ancient Greece and Rome, Early Christianity and Judaism, Egypt through the Christian period, and also comparative and critical theory.

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Bart Koet

In recent and contemporary scholarship, the deacon as a leader in the Early Church is an often-neglected subject. This book focuses on the roles and functions of the deacon in Augustine’s literary output. The author’s approach is detailed and appropriately cautious and is always attentive to the text. He analyses Augustine’s way of commenting on deacons and how the bishop of Hippo wrote about them, as well as his manner of preaching on saints and martyrs who were deacons. The book thus provides a new perspective on the early deacons who were not social workers, but go-betweens or intermediaries between the bishop and his flock, between the Scriptures and daily life, and between Church and society. He emphasises in particular how deacons were epistle bearers responsible for the world wide web of Early Christianity.

The Derveni Papyrus

Unearthing Ancient Mysteries

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Edited by Marco Antonio Santamaría Álvarez

The Derveni Papyrus: Unearthing Ancient Mysteries is devoted to this fascinating and challenging document, discovered in 1962 in a tomb in Derveni, near Thessaloniki, and dated c. 340-320 BCE. It contains a text probably written at the end of 5th c. BCE, which after some reflections on minor divinities and unusual cults, comments upon a poem attributed to Orpheus from an allegorical and philosophical perspective. This volume focuses on the restoration and conservation of the papyrus, the ideas of the anonymous author about Erinyes and daimons, the quoted Orphic poem in comparison with Hesiod’s Theogony and Parmenides’ poem, the exegetical approach of the commentator, his cosmogonic system, his attitude regarding mystery cults and his peculiar theology.

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Edited by Ignacio Gallup-Diaz and Geoffrey Plank

Quakers and Native Americans examines the history of interactions between Quakers and Native Americans (American Indians). Fourteen scholarly essays cover the period from the 1650s to the twentieth century. American Indians often guided the Quakers by word and example, demanding that they give content to their celebrated commitment to peace. As a consequence, the Quakers’ relations with American Indians has helped define their sense of mission and propelled their rise to influence in the U.S. Quakers have influenced Native American history as colonists, government advisors, and educators, eventually promoting boarding schools, assimilation and the suppression of indigenous cultures. The final two essays in this collection provide Quaker and American Indian perspectives on this history, bringing the story up to the present day.

Contributors include: Ray Batchelor, Lori Daggar, John Echohawk, Stephanie Gamble, Lawrence M. Hauptman, Allison Hrabar, Thomas J. Lappas, Carol Nackenoff, Paula Palmer, Ellen M. Ross, Jean R. Soderlund, Mary Beth Start, Tara Strauch, Marie Balsley Taylor, Elizabeth Thompson, and Scott M. Wert.