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Meeting Program Units

2011 Annual Meeting

San Francisco, CA

Meeting Begins11/19/2011
Meeting Ends11/22/2011

Call for Papers Opens: 1/25/2011
Call for Papers Closes: 3/4/2011

Requirements for Participation

Art and Religions of Antiquity


Program Unit Type: Section
Accepting Papers? Yes

Call For Papers: The Art and Religions in Antiquity program unit is sponsoring three sessions at the 2011 annual meeting. We are accepting paper proposals for all three.

Session 1: "Dura: Art & Religion along the Trade Routes of Northern Mesopotamia." Dura-Europos provides a rare opportunity to study a rich repertoire of primary sources regarding the religious life of late ancient Mesopotamia. This panel seeks papers that focus on the local/regional practice of religion as it manifests in art and archeology

Session 2: "Open Session: Art and Religion of Antiquity." We welcome paper proposals on the art of any ancient religious tradition and especially encourage papers that address the use of art and material culture in service of religion.

Session 3: "The Materiality of Texts / The Word as Object." We will be hosting a joint session on this topic with both the Religious World of Late Antiquity and the Social History of Formative Christianity and Judaism program units.

(Please submit your abstract or paper to only one of the three units; all submissions will be considered jointly among the three.) We seek papers that explore issues that arise from the fact that, at some point in the development of sacred texts, readers become aware of them as material entities. How did this awareness affect their adornment, both inside with ornate calligraphy and illuminations, and outside with ornamented covers? How did this development influence ritual practices? What happened when lectionary habits of ancient scriptural religious traditions coincided with the production of texts as ritual objects? What happens to our understanding or even interpretation of text when it depends as much, if not more on the materiality of the text than on the words themselves? How does thinking about the materiality of ancient texts (and attendant technologies) provide insight into the development of ritual practices and other embodied ideas of the sacred?

Program Unit Chairs

Ellen Muehlberger
Zsuzsanna Gulacsi

Propose a Paper for this Program Unit

If you are a SBL member, you must login before you can propose a paper for this or any other session. Please login by entering your SBL member number on the left in the Login box.

For all other persons wanting to propose a paper, you must communicate directly with the chair of the program unit to which you want to propose. Chairs have the responsibility to make waiver requests, and their email addresses are available above. SBL provides membership and meeting registration waivers only for scholars who are outside the disciplines covered by the SBL program, specifically most aspects of archaeological, biblical, religious, and theological studies.

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