Search SBL

Meeting Program Units

2021 Annual Meeting

San Antonio, TX

Meeting Begins11/20/2021
Meeting Ends11/23/2021

Call for Papers Opens: 1/20/2021
Call for Papers Closes: 3/24/2021

Requirements for Participation

Social Sciences and the Interpretation of the Hebrew Scriptures

Program Unit Type: Section
Accepting Papers? Yes

Call For Papers: Will have four sessions. The first three are invited, the fourth is an open, themed session. 1) Our first invited panel—postponed from 2020—addresses notions of time and temporality in the Hebrew Bible and related literature. It is especially interested in projects that investigate the usefulness of memory studies as a promising methodological framework for the presentation and analysis of models of time in the biblical corpus. Equally, this panel is interested in ways literature related to time may challenge, reframe, and underscore the value of memory studies for the analysis of biblical texts. (2) The second panel—also postponed from 2020—explores interdisciplinary approaches to death and the underworld. Death powerfully provokes the human imagination. It generates rituals, belief-systems, questions about identity, and it permeates across the boundaries of culture and time. Scholarship abounds in research concerning “beliefs” about post-mortem existence and resurrection, but how might contemporary research from the social sciences heuristically inform our reflection on the topic? What is the meaning and significance of ancient underworlds? What is the meaning and significance of the metaphors that emerge concerning the “under”- “spirit”- “nether”- or “other”-world and death? (3) The third session is a review panel for Isabel Cranz’s new monograph: Royal Illness and Kingship Ideology in the Hebrew Bible (Cambridge University Press, 2020). (4) Our last session is jointly hosted with the Religions of Israel and Judah in their West Asian Environment unit. We are soliciting papers for an open panel on the topic of the religion and the body in ancient Israel and Judah in their social and cultural context. We welcome papers that engage theories of practices related to the body, senses, and dress in the social sciences. We also solicit work on related topics, including power, gender, and ritual in the broader context of the study of religion in the ancient Middle East.

Program Unit Chairs

Eric X. Jarrard
Dr. Katherine Southwood

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

© 2022, Society of Biblical Literature. All Rights Reserved.