Search SBL

Meeting Program Units

2020 Annual Meeting

Virtual Meeting

Meeting Begins11/29/2020
Meeting Ends12/11/2020

Call for Papers Opens: 1/7/2020
Call for Papers Closes: 3/11/2020

Requirements for Participation

Art and Religions of Antiquity

Program Unit Type: Section
Accepting Papers? Yes

Call For Papers: The Art and Religions of Antiquity is planning three open sessions for the 2020 Annual Meeting:

The Art of the Assemblage: Altars, Mixtures, and Other Odd Juxtapositions (session co-sponsored by Greco-Roman Religions)
We invite papers that discuss juxtapositions of images, objects, and features at focal points of religious activity—altars bedecked with votives, candles, and saints’ images; combinations of symbols in mosaics and paintings; bricolages in gems and amulets; lararia and reliquaries; combinations in ritual performances. We invite exploration of juxtaposition, the mutual influencing of images, and the gaining of meaning (and even agency) through relationship to other things. We also welcome proposals and papers that engage with some particular theoretical reading.

Art at the Boundaries: Heresy, Apocrypha, and the Margins in Material Religion
We invite papers examining visual art and material culture indicative of practices, theologies, or traditions that have been classed as socially/religiously marginal. Papers should be mindful of whose viewpoint defines the “margins,” and address how the material examined performs such functions as asserting socio-religious identity, constructing/contesting orthodoxy and heresy, or forming canon and community.

Depictions of Animals and Other Zoomorphic Creatures in the Art of Religions of Antiquity
We invite papers that explore the artistic depictions of animals, hybrid animals, monsters, sea creatures, demonic animals, or zoomorphic angels—beings that may fit into the categories of natural, supernatural, mythological, or metaphorical. They may also be defined by their function: decorative, beneficial, terrifying, evil, symbolic, etc. We intentionally leave open other questions and parameters in order to welcome a wide variety of paper proposals.

Program Unit Chairs

Vasiliki M. Limberis
Mark D. Ellison

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.

Questions About Membership?

  • Call 866-727-9955 Toll Free in the US
  • Call 404-727-9498 Outside the US
  • Fax us at 404-727-2419
  • Email us at


© 2023, Society of Biblical Literature. All Rights Reserved.