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SBL e-Newsletter
October 4, 2012 e-newsletter
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Annual Meeting

The SBL Annual Meeting is only six weeks away, and we are making plans for a wonderful event in Chicago. We hope you are making plans to participate! Register now and save money on your conference fee.

Hotel reservations
If you have yet to make hotel reservations in Chicago, we have added three new hotels to keep pace with the demand for rooms at conference rates. If you have already registered, you may return to your record and add a hotel reservation using the edit link on your registration email confirmation or you may call the SBL housing office at 404-727-2315. We currently have rooms available at the following hotels with rates ranging from $149 to $165 per night for single occupancy. (If you share a room, you can split the cost with your colleagues and make it more even more affordable.)

Amalfi Hotel, 20 West Kinzie St.
Hard Rock Hotel, 230 N. Michigan Ave.
Hotel 71, 71 East Wacker Dr.
Hotel Sax Chicago, 333 N. Dearborn St.
Hyatt Regency McCormick Place, 2233 S. Martin Luther King Dr.
Renaissance Chicago Hotel, 1 West Wacker Dr.
W Chicago City Center, 172 W. Adams St.

In the midst of your Annual Meeting schedule, be sure to carve out some time for one of these stimulating workshops. For those of you who want practical advice on impactful instruction, check out Designing Courses for Significant Learning. If you seek insight into the current job market in biblical and religious studies, sign up for Understanding and Managing the Hiring Process. If you want some help with the essentials of academic publishing, book contracts, copyright law, and the characteristics of scholarly writing, The Academic's Guide to Publishing is for you. And if using performance as a means to assist students with the engagement of biblical texts interests you, then make time for Using Performance to Teach the Bible. Each of these workshops is on Friday, November 16—a day before sessions start in full—so it's the perfect time to focus on a little professional development while you have the energy. For more information and to download the workshop form, click here.

Get out and learn about the rich history of Chicago with one of seven tours offered this year. See the city's landmarks on the Chicago City and Architectural Tour or enjoy smaller communities with the Passport to Chicago's Neighborhoods and Lunch. For those who want to have some fun, the Gangster Untouchable Tour takes you back to Chicago in the 1920s and 1930s for an evening tour of hot spots and hit spots. Travel by bus to the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center to view the collection of artifacts, documents and photographs or visit the Baha'i House of Worship, one of seven Baha'i temples in the world. The Sacred and Religious Sites tour will explore several early immigrant groups' religious buildings in Chicago's Near West Side. The Swiss Treasures Exhibition at the University of Chicago Library highlights the contributions that Switzerland has made to Europe's cultural history from Biblical Papyrus and Parchment to Erasmus, Zwingli, Calvin and Barth. The tour includes bus transportation and a guided tour of the exhibit. To download the tour form and read tour descriptions, click here.

Alternate Career Paths Survey

The call for more and better data on academic jobs in the humanities and social sciences continues to ring. SBL has added its voice to the call by, for example, participating with the Coalition on the Academic Workforce’s survey efforts and encouraging its members to participate in the Modern Language Association’s (MLA) Academic Workforce Data Center. There is also urgent need for data on non-academic job opportunities or alternative academic career paths, as a recent article in the Chronicle for Higher Education acknowledges (In Search of Hard Data on Nonacademic Careers). Noted in the article were the efforts of the Scholarly Communication Institute, which has “launched a survey for people on alternative academic career paths—and their employers—to illuminate perceived gaps in career training.” We encourage you to check out the survey, to participate, and to get involved with the Institute’s efforts. It is our hope that the survey will gather enough responses to permit developing a rich dataset.

Committees of the Society and many interested members continue to work toward addressing the prevailing challenges and seizing the available opportunities of the job market. The Society, with the American Academy of Religion, operates an Employment Center at its Annual Meetings. Whether traditional or alternative, academic or non-academic, the 700 job seekers that utilize the Employment Center have developed skills, knowledge, and understanding that are critical to today’s job market through the academic study of biblical texts and their contexts as well as of the traditions and contexts of biblical interpretation. Developing data to show these facts is important. We hope you will check out the SCI’s survey and stay tuned to the Society’s efforts to develop data on the job market.

David Noel Freedman Award for Excellence and Creativity in Hebrew Bible Scholarship

A session honoring the 2012 Award Winner: Yitzhaq Feder:

Monday the 19th
1:00 PM to 2:45 PM
Room: S505b - McCormick Place

Elizabeth Bloch-Smith, Saint Joseph's University (Philadelphia, PA), Presiding
Yitzhaq Feder, University of Haifa
Between Contagion and Cognition: The Israelite Concept of Pollution in Light of West Asian and Ethnographic Evidence (30 min)
Jonathan Klawans, Boston University, Respondent (15 min)
Edward Slingerland, University of British Columbia, Respondent (15 min)


SBL extends congratulations to Rev. Brian E. Daley, S.J.,Catherine F. Huisking Professor of Theology at the University of Notre Dame. Father Daley will receive the 2012 Ratzinger Prize in Theology from Pope Benedict XVI in a ceremony October 20 in Rome. The award has been called the "Nobel of Theology," and recognizes distinguished scholarship in scripture, patristics, and fundamental theology.

Brian Daley has served SBL as a member of the Writings from the Greco-Roman World editorial board for four terms and as a member of the steering committee for the Development of Early Christian Theology Section. SBL is pleased to acknowledge this impressive honor newly bestowed on Father Daley.

Membership and Subscriptions

Address Change
We have dropped the use of our post office box. Please send all mailings for SBL directly to Society of Biblical Literature, The Luce Center, 825 Houston Mill Road, Atlanta, GA 30329 . Please be sure to use the most recent membership and subscription form. It can be found here:

Optional Profile Winners
Every month, we randomly select two members from the pool of those who have filled out the Optional Profile for a free one-year membership. The September 2012 winners are:

Edgar W. Conrad
Wayne Nicholson

As our privacy policy indicates, we will never divulge information from your profile to a third party. Thank you to all of you who have supplied this optional data. If you have not yet filled in the information (or you would like to update it), you may do so by logging into our website with your SBL Member number and going to the "my profile" tab, which will appear on the left hand side of the screen in the box where you logged in. While you are filling out the Optional Profile, please make sure all of your profile information is up to date!

The Journal of Biblical Literature is the flagship journal of the field. It is published quarterly and includes scholarly articles and critical notes by members of the Society. Essential reading for over a century, it is now available online and in print.

In order to receive the printed issue 131:4 of the Journal of Biblical Literature your subscription and payment must be received no later than November 15 2012. The subscription form can be found here. You may fax or email your form to the office. Our Fax number is 404-727-2419 or you may email the form to If you prefer, you may renew your subscription online, by logging into the website at and following the directions. You may also of course mail your subscription form to us at 825 Houston Mill Road, Atlanta, GA 30329.

Please see the letter to members from Adele Reinhartz, the General Editor of the Journal of Biblical Literature.

The Review of Biblical Literature (RBL), founded by the Society of Biblical Literature, presents reviews of books in biblical studies and related fields. Appearing in digital form and in print, RBL is comprehensive, international, and timely.

Comprehensive: RBL includes reviews of various topical studies, multi-author volumes, reference works, commentaries, dictionaries, bible translations, software, and other resources for the classroom and research. Multiple and contrasting reviews are often presented. The material reviewed and our reviewers come from varied academic, social, and religious perspectives.
International: RBL provides a forum for international scholarly exchange and cutting edge innovations with reviews of German, French, Italian, and English books as well as reviews in those languages. Our editorial board includes members from across the globe.
Timely: RBL produces reviews of the most recent titles in biblical studies.
• Authoritative: RBL reviews are written by the most qualified scholars available, whether a member of the SBL or the broader scholarly guild, and are vetted to ensure their quality by a highly regarded editorial board.

In order to receive the printed annual of the Review of Biblical Literature for 2012 your subscription and payment needs to be received by October 15, 2012. The subscription form can be found at: .

You can print the form, fill it out and mail it with your payment or payment information to 825 Houston Mill Road, Atlanta , GA 30329. Or, you can fax it to 404-727-2419. If you prefer you can renew your subscription online by logging into the website at and following the directions.

Special subscription rates to JBL and RBL are available to institutions in ICI countries. Download the ICI order form here.


See full job listings

The Employment Center, sponsored by SBL and the American Academy of Religion, provides the opportunity for employers and those seeking employment to register for interviews at the Annual Meetings, as well as interview facilities, job listings, candidate credentials, and a messaging service. The point is for both candidates and employers to reduce costs of travel and time by facilitating the engagement of both parties in multiple interviews in a neutral environment. As the Annual Meetings are the major congressional venue for reporting current research, meeting colleagues, and making new connections, they also offers candidates the opportunity to obtain professional development—by engaging scholars, hearing lectures, giving papers, and participating in sessions.

Learn more about the Employment Center, job listings, and employer and candidate registration for the Annual Meetings here.

International Cooperation Initiative

Online Books
Five books were posted to the Online Books depository in September, and we are pleased to announce that two of the titles are from our new partner, Wiley-Blackwell.

Edwards, Mark. John. Blackwell Bible Commentaries. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2004.

Fritz, Volmer. The Emergence of Israel in the Twelfth and Eleventh Centuries B.C.E. Bible Encyclopedia. Biblical Encyclopedia. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2011.

Johnson, Timothy Jay. Now My Eyes See You: Unveiling an Apocalyptic Job. Hebrew Bible Monographs, 24. Sheffield: Sheffield Phoenix Press, 2009.

Langston, Scott M. Exodus Through the Centuries. Blackwell Bible Commentaries. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2006.

Shectman, Sarah. Women in the Pentateuch: A Feminist and Source-Critical Analysis. Hebrew Bible Monographs, 23. Sheffield: Sheffield Phoenix Press, 2009.

Liaison Network
The ICI Liaison Network now has country representatives in all six regions covered by the initiative. Our goal is to eventually have a representative from each ICI country. See the current list here. SBL members are encouraged to participate in the network by volunteering to serve as a liaison or by nominating a scholar in an ICI country to fill that role. For more information, please contact Tim Langille.


Click here for full calender

October 2012
10/12-10/14 Traveling Traditions: Pilgrimage across Time and Cultures
The Institute of Pilgrimage Studies in conjunction with the International Consortium for Pilgrimage Studies is hosting their first annual Symposium to be held at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia.

More information

November 2012
11/17- 11/20 SBL Annual Meeting
Chicago, Illinois
December 2012
12/12-12/14 The Panoply of Judaisms in the 1st-3rd Centuries (Christians, Rabbis and Synagogues)
This international meeting will happen at the Institute of the Biblical Sciences (University of Lausanne, CH) and is co-organized by Claire Clivaz, Simon Mimouni and Bernard Pouderon.

Speakers will be: Marie-Françoise Baslez, Ra’anan Boustan, Bogdan Bucur, Claire Clivaz, José Costa, Jörg Frey, Emmanuel Friedheim, David Hamidovic, Hervé Inglebert, Daniel Marguerat, Simon Mimouni, Ron Naiweld, Etienne Nodet, Bernard Pouderon, Annette Yoshiko Reed, Benjamin Bertho, Simon Butticaz, Charlotte Touati.

The profound change that research is currently undergoing demands a shift in thinking about all forms of Judaism, not just the rabbinic or Christian movements but also synagogue Judaism. For several centuries, both the Christians and the Rabbis ‘attempted’ to achieve a Utopian unity, as improbable as it is impossible, by defining their boundaries in terms of notions such as heresy and canon. In so doing, they each diminished the influence of synagogue Judaism and in places smoothed it over to the point of apparently effacing it forever. It is in the light of these changes in perspective that the organisers of this colloquium would like to reconsider all the forms of Judaism after 70CE , with the aim of taking stock of the increasingly numerous shifts occurring in this area of high-level research.

See Program, information and inscription here.
12/20-12/21 The Society for Biblical Studies in India (SBSI) will hold its biennial conference in Bangalore, Whitefield at the Ecumenical Christian Center. The Theme for this conference is: Biblical Jubilee: Indian Liberation Hermeneutics.
For more information contact Rev. Dr. K. Jesurathnam, Secretary, SBSI.
January 2013
1/3-1/6 Linguistic Society of America Annual Meeting (LSA)
Boston Marriott Copley Place in Boston, Massachusetts

More information
1/3-1/6 Archaeological Institute of America and the American Philological Association
114th AIA and APA Joint Annual Meeting will be held in Seattle, Washington
AIA information
APA information
February 2013
March 2013
3/15- 3/17 Southeastern Commission for the Study of Religion (SECSOR)
Regional meeting will be held at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina
More information 
3/15- 3/18 Annual Meeting of the American Oriental Society
Portland, Oregon, Portland Hilton & Executive Tower
More information 
3/23- 3/25 SBL Pacific Coast Regional Meeting
Regional meeting will be held at Hope International University in Fullerton, California
More information 

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