November 11, 2015 Newsletter
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SBL Newsletter

Bible Odyssey

Thanks to all who have shared Bible Odyssey content with their students!

Follow us: @bibleodyssey

Roets Endowment to Bible Odyssey

SBL extends its thanks to Lois Roets, widow of the late Philip Roets—biblical scholar, educator, and long-time member of the Society of Biblical Literature—for providing a $50,000 fund, which will be used exclusively to develop new content for Bible Odyssey. Beginning in 2015, The Philip G. and Lois F. Roets Endowment for the Bible and the Public Good will provide generous, long-term support to expand SBL’s mission to foster biblical scholarship among the general public. Bible Odyssey was developed through a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Ongoing support, such as this, allows SBL to strengthen and extend its impact by engaging the public, educators, and the media. Please visit and support the public face of SBL at

SBL on Twitter

@ Annual Meeting: #AARSBL15

Follow SBL on twitter: @bibleodyssey and @SBLsite.

The former promotes content related to Bible Odyssey and biblical studies in general. The latter is a combined channel for communication to SBL members from the SBL Press, Professions, Congresses, and Membership departments.

SBL Calendar

Events for Biblical and Religious Studies

SBL Membership and Subscriptions

Have you updated your member profile for this year? Remember that if you fill out the member data form you are automatically entered in a drawing to win one of two iPads. You can see the results of last year’s snapshot here. We are working on the data for this year’s report so do please fill out the profile if you have not done so already.

Support SBL with Amazon Purchases

Call for Nominations

The Society of Biblical Literature is a member-run learned society. Its governance structure depends on the community of volunteer scholars who quite literally take turns leading the organization. Over one-thousand members serve every year, for various terms of office, in many different areas, in order to support SBL’s mission of fostering biblical scholarship. Some positions are initiated by members as they propose book series or program units (and serve as editors and chairs). Members support editors and chairs by serving on book series editorial boards or program unit steering committees. Some work is done in an advisory fashion, or on an ad hoc board that addresses new challenges and opportunities. Still other groups are standing committees, and their members assist with the ongoing programs, policies, and business matters of the Society. See a list of the various committees and boards (select a committee to read its description).

SBL Members are encouraged and invited to submit nominations to fill open positions on SBL committees and boards. Members may nominate themselves. All nominees must be members in good standing of the SBL. For more information on what positions are open, when they open, and on how to submit a name, please go here.

Kudos To IQSA

In September 2015, your colleagues in Qur’anic studies received approval from the IRS as a tax-exempt, non-profit learned society (501[c][3]. Our congratulations go to all involved in International Qur’anic Studies Association: Emran El-Badawi (executive director, University of Houston), Gabriel Said Reynolds (chair, University of Notre Dame), the IQSA board, and IQSA’s members. Please visit IQSA’s website——to learn more about its programs and services. Join IQSA members at their meeting, which affiliates with SBL at the Annual Meeting. Please help support and encourage their mission to foster Qur’anic scholarship.

Annual Meeting Updates

Welcome Reception
Be sure to include the Welcome Reception on your meeting planner app!

SBL & AAR Members Welcome Reception
8:00 PM to 10:00 PM
Room: Atrium Ballroom (Atrium Level) - Marriott

Shabbat Plans in Atlanta
Jewish Shabbat meals and services will be available at the conference. Advance registration and payment is required for meals.
Services Friday night will be at 5:30 PM (Minchah) with dinner to follow at around 6:30 PM. Lunch Saturday will be at 11:30 AM during the SBL/AAR lunch break.
For information or to register, please e-mail

SBL Press Book Sale
Almost all new, recent, and backlist SBL Press and Brown Judaic Studies titles are available to SBL members at a 30% discount during the Annual Meeting Fall Sale. Download the order form, then mail or fax your order by December 15, 2015. If you prefer to order by phone or at the SBL Press Store, make sure to use the promo code FL2015 at checkout to receive your discount.

International Meeting Call for Papers is Open

We are excited about partnering with the Society of Asian Biblical Studies, the Korean Old Testament Society, and the Korean New Testament Society for the 2016 International Meeting in Seoul, South Korea.
Link to the Call for Papers

SBL Press E-books

Don’t forget to visit the Kindle Store and Google Play to search for available SBL Press and Society of Biblical Literature titles.

Featured titles:

The Qumran Paradigm: A Critical Evaluation of Some Foundational Hypotheses in the Construction of the Qumran Sect 
Gwynned de Looijer
Gwynned de Looijer reexamines the key hypotheses that have driven scholars’ understandings of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the archaeological site of Khirbet Qumran, and the textual descriptions of the Essenes. She demonstrates that foundational hypotheses regarding a sect at Qumran have heavily influenced the way the texts found in the surrounding caves are interpreted. De Looijer’s approach abandons those assumptions to illustrate that the Dead Sea Scrolls reflect a wider range of backgrounds reflecting the many diverse forms of Judaism that existed in the Second Temple period.

Paper $37.95, ISBN 9780884140719
Hardcover $52.95, ISBN 9780884140733
Kindle, ASIN B016QYDA7I
Google Play, ISBN 9780884140726
284 pages • Early Judaism and Its Literature 43

Evagrius’s Kephalaia Gnostika: A New Translation of the Unreformed Text from the Syriac
Ilaria L.E. Ramelli
Evagrius had a striking impact on the development of spirituality, of Origenism, and of the spiritual interpretation of the Bible in Greek, Syriac, and Latin Christianity. This English translation of the most complete Syriac version of Kephalaia Gnostika makes Evagrius Ponticus’s thoughts concerning reality, God, protology, eschatology, anthropology, and allegorical exegesis of Scripture widely available.

Paper $65.95, ISBN 9781628370393
Hardcover $85.95, ISBN 9781628370416
Kindle, ASIN B016N470IG
Google Play, ISBN 9781628370409
508 pages • Writings from the Greo-Roman World 38

Exploring Philemon: Freedom, Brotherhood, and Partnership in the New Society
Roy R. Jeal
Exploring Philemon shows how this letter entered the world of the ancient Mediterranean and the early church with a dramatic and powerful rhetorical force by analyzing the range of textures interwoven with each other to produce a profound effect on an early Christian (Philemon) and on the church that met in his home. It demonstrates that many striking and subtle features work together to present a rhetorical argument that the new Christian society must be one of freedom, brotherhood, and partnership not just for the powerful, but for all.

Paper $30.95, ISBN 9780884140917
Hardcover $45.95, ISBN 9780884140931
Kindle, ASIN B0178FZPLS
Google Play, ISBN 9780884140924
262 pages •  Rhetoric of Religious Antiquity 2

Worship, Women, and War: Essays in Honor of Susan Niditch 
John J. Collins, T. M. Lemos, Saul M. Olyan, editors
This volume of essays honors Susan Niditch, author of War in the Hebrew Bible: A Study in the Ethics of Violence (1993), “My Brother Esau Is a Hairy Man”: Hair and Identity in Ancient Israel (2008), and most recently, The Responsive Self: Personal Religion in Biblical Literature of the Neo-Babylonian and Persian Periods (forthcoming), among other influential publications. Nineteen scholars touch on topics important to Niditch, including folklore, mythology, and oral history, Israelite religion, ancient Judaism, warfare, violence, and gender.

Hardcover $59.95, ISBN 9781930675933
Kindle, ASIN B016R5CK1I
Google Play, ISBN 9781930675971
336 pages • Brown Judaic Studies 357

A Most Reliable Witness: Essays in Honor of Ross Shepard Kraemer
Susan Ashbrook Harvey, Nathaniel Desrosiers, Shira L. Lander, Jacqueline Z. Pastis, Daniel Ullucci, editors
Ross Kraemer is Professor Emerita in the Department of Religious Studies at Brown University. This volume of essays, conceived and produced by students, colleagues, and friends, bears witness to the breadth of her own scholarly interests in ancient Judaism, Christianity, and women in the Greco-Roman world. Twenty-eight original essays examine both ancient and modern texts in cross-cultural and trans-historical perspective on ancient Judaism, Christianity, and women in the Greco-Roman world.

Hardcover $59.95, ISBN 9781930675940
Kindle, ASIN B016R8W0UG
Google Play, ISBN 9781930675964
312 pages • Brown Judaic Studies 358


Vincent L. Wimbush Named Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar

Vincent L. Wimbush, Director, Institute for Signifying Scriptures and past president of SBL, has been named a Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar for the 2015-2016 academic year. He is one of 13 distinguished scholars selected by the Phi Beta Kappa Society for this program.

Visiting Scholars spend two days at a select group of colleges and universities with Phi Beta Kappa chapters. They meet informally with undergraduates, participate in classroom lectures and seminars, and give a major address open to the academic community and general public.

Dr. Wimbush will visit nine institutions: Texas Christian University, Morehouse College, University of Georgia, Rhodes College, Case Western Reserve University, University of Missouri, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Rockford University, and Carleton College.
More information

Do you have a question, comment, or suggestion about the SBL Handbook of Style, 2nd edition?
If so, please contact SBL Press at

Extensive changes and additions render the first edition outdated
Essential for publishing in ancient Near Eastern, biblical, and early Christian studies
Definitive answers to questions of style, spelling, transliteration, and citation

Hardcover $39.95  •  ISBN 9781589839649  •  368 pages

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