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CSBS Ancient Historiography Seminar / Conférence antique d’historiographie

13th October 2005

At the May 2005 meeting of the Canadian Society of Biblical Studies / Société canadienne des Études bibliques (CSBS/SCÉB) in London, ON, the membership approved a three-year renewable seminar on ancient historiography. The Ancient Historiography Seminar / Conférence antique d’historiographie is a professional, academic working group of the CSBS. Its purpose is to advance the study of ancient historiography within the Canadian Society of Biblical Studies and the broader biblical studies and ancient Near Eastern studies communities. This encompasses issues relating to the form and function of ancient historiographic texts, comparative historiography of the ancient world, methodological problems related to employing ancient historiographic texts for modern historical reconstruction, as well as various themes and tropes in biblical and cognate historiography. While certainly not limited to biblical texts, the Seminar will bring comparative material to bear on the understanding of the historiographic texts of the Bible.

Seminar Steering Committee

The Seminar is chaired by fellow biblioblogger Ken Ristau and the Steering Committee is made up of the following:

  • Patricia G. Kirkpatrick, Associate Professor and Chair, Biblical Area, Faculty of Religious Studies, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec.
  • Gary Knoppers, Professor and Department Head, Department of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania.
  • Dilys N. Patterson, Assistant Professor, Department of Religion, Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec.
  • Ken Ristau (Seminar Chair), Doctoral student, Department of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania.
  • Tyler F. Williams (Communication Officer), Assistant Professor and Chair, Religion & Theology Department, Taylor University College, Edmonton, Alberta.
  • Ehud Ben Zvi, Professor, Department of History and Classics & Interdisciplinary Program of Religious Studies, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta.

Seminar Website

One of my tasks as a member of the Steering Committee, was to develop a Seminar website, which is now online at http://biblical-studies.ca/historiography. The website will allow the Seminar members to communicate with each other and with the broader academic community. It will also serve as a means to disseminate information about the Seminar and resources for the study of historiographic writings of the ancient Near Eastern world. You will note that the resources page is still under construction. If you have any resources that you think should be included on this page, please let me know.

York 2006 Call for Papers

The CSBS will be meeting at York University in Toronto in May 2006. The Call for Papers for the Seminar is available here. The theme for the Seminar’Â’s inaugural year is “The Function of Biblical and Cognate Historiography.” We invite papers that examine biblical and cognate historiography within its historical contexts. It is important that submissions remain strictly focused on the biblical and cognate historiography of antiquity (pre-1st century C.E.) and analyze its function for the communities that wrote and/or received these texts in the ancient world. Papers can be methodological or practical, that is, in the latter case, scholars may apply a particular critical approach to a problem or text(s) and so engage the questions implicitly rather than explicitly. Contributors must be or become members of the Canadian Society of Biblical Studies. For more information on the call for papers, please see the Seminar website.

For questions regarding the Seminar please contact Ken Ristau (email: ken.ristau [at] anduril.ca). Questions and/or comments on this website may be forwarded to Tyler F. Williams (email: historiography [at] biblical-studies.ca).

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