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Congresses

2024 Annual Meeting

San Diego, California

Meeting Begins11/23/2024
Meeting Ends11/26/2024

Call for Papers Opens: 1/24/2024
Call for Papers Closes: 3/20/2024

Requirements for Participation

Program Units

 

Academic Teaching and Biblical Studies

John Hilton
Description: Pedagogy and the classroom each provides a hermeneutical and heuristic frame of reference for the reading and interpretation of the Bible. Each classroom is also part of a larger institutional context has its own mission statement and culture. These provide concrete interpretive communities in which reading and interpretation take place. The exploration of the dynamics of teaching within the context of pedagogical concerns, institutional goals and cultures, and specific classroom communities is the goal of the group's agenda.

Call for papers: Session 1: "Tips for Teaching Biblical Studies Online." We seek brief presentations (20 minutes) that provide clear, actionable suggestions for improving online pedagogy. Topic suggestions include: building community online, increasing social presence, making online lessons impactful, and assessments in online education. Special consideration will be given to proposals that model or demonstrate the suggested teaching practice.

Session 2: “Small Teaching.” We seek brief presentations (20 minutes) that connect to the research-based practices in James Lang’s book Small Teaching (Jossey-Bass, 2021). These practices include predicting, retrieving, interleaving, connecting, practicing, explaining, belonging and motivating. How have you put these into practice in a biblical studies classroom?

Session 3: Teaching after Covid19. We seek presentations (30 minutes) that examine how teaching biblical studies has evolved since the pandemic began in the spring of 2020. Presentations may discuss the effects of the pandemic on student achievement, learning styles, perceptions of the Bible, approaches to interpretation, communication skills and other relevant areas. Special consideration will be given to proposals that model or demonstrate how teaching practice has evolved with success in light of the pandemic experience.

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African Biblical Hermeneutics

Alice Yafeh-Deigh
Funlola O. Olojede
Description: This section is devoted to the study of the Bible from African perspectives, and focuses on African issues. A diversity of methods reflecting the social-cultural diversity of Africa is used in reading the Bible. The emphasis is on encouraging readings of the Bible that are shaped by African perspectives and issues, and giving voice to African biblical scholars as they contribute to global biblical scholarship. The unit expects to publish essays from its sessions.

Call for papers: 1.Methodologies and Epistemologies in African Biblical Interpretation: This call for papers invites contributions on the intersection of translation studies and epistemological methods within postcolonial Africa, specifically in African Biblical Interpretation. We encourage papers that demonstrate how these frameworks collaboratively shape the translation and interpretation of biblical texts, reflecting the rich tapestry of African cultural and linguistic contexts. Submissions should highlight how these frameworks advance the translation process and mirror the intricate facets of the postcolonial African societies, thereby deepening our understanding of the Bible's significance in modern Africa. This session is a unique opportunity to highlight research that merges biblical scholarship with the complexities of translation in postcolonial Africa, highlighting how this interplay enriches our understanding of biblical texts in Africa's diverse cultural and linguistic landscapes. 2.Migration and the Bible in African and Diasporic Contexts: This session calls for papers that critically examine the complex relationship between biblical narratives and migration experiences within the African continent and in diasporic communities. We welcome papers that delve into how biblical texts have been interpreted, reimagined, and lived out in the context of migration. This includes examining biblical themes and stories that resonate with the experiences of displacement, movement, and resettlement, and how these texts offer meaning and hope during times of transition. We are particularly interested in how these texts are interpreted, preached, and embodied within African and diasporic communities. We encourage submissions that offer fresh perspectives on the intersections of faith, identity, and migration, and how these dynamics shape religious practices and beliefs in African and diasporic contexts. 3.Exploring the Intersection of Bible, Trauma, and Mental Health in African Conte

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African-American Biblical Hermeneutics

A. Francis Carter, Jr.
Description: The purpose of the African American Biblical Hermeneutics Section (AABHS) is to engage in the interdisciplinary and holistic study of the Bible and its place in a multi-faceted and complex African-American cultural Weltanschauung. The section provides a forum for scholarly discussion of any aspect of engagement with the bible from the perspective of African American culture, history, literature, or politics. It encourages interdisciplinary discussions about hermeneutics and culture and strives to encourage emerging scholars in publishing scholarly work in the field and advancing the study of African American hermeneutics.

Call for papers: The African American Biblical Hermeneutics Section (AABHS) invites proposals for two open call sessions. Session 1 - Justice, Scripture, and Liberation: This session invites papers that explore the diverse ways African American biblical interpreters define, problematize, and contextualize the motifs justice, scripture, and/or liberation through the prisms of African American life, history, struggle, resilience, and/or scholarship. Session 2: This is an open call for paper proposals taking up interdisciplinary discussions that advance the study of African American biblical hermeneutics.

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Ancient Education: Social, Intellectual, and Material Contexts

Jeremiah Coogan
Monika Amsler
Description: Ancient Education: Social, Intellectual, and Material Contexts invites conversation about the production and transmission of knowledge in the late ancient Mediterranean and Middle East. Rather than treating social networks, material artifacts, and curricular frameworks separately, we explore their manifold intersections and investigate their contexts and implications. The unit locates the production of religious knowledge within capacious social, intellectual, and material histories, crossing geographical, linguistic, and religious boundaries that often divide scholarly conversation.

Call for papers: The Ancient Education Program Unit invites paper proposals for two open-call sessions. The unit will also sponsor an invited book-review panel. Both open calls are capacious in terms of chronology, geography, religious context, language, and methodology. Papers will be twenty minutes long, followed by ten minutes of discussion.

(1) Legal Education: This session (co-sponsored with the Biblical Law Program Unit) will focus on legal education in antiquity. We invite papers that explore legal education, the transmission of legal knowledge, and the place of law within broader educational contexts and institutions in the ancient Mediterranean and Near East. Topics that could be addressed include (but are not limited to): legal education in the training of scribes in Mesopotamia, Israel, and other parts of the ancient Near East; legal education and the transmission of legal tradition in ancient Judaism; legal education and judicial training in the Persian Empire; the relationship between legal education and rhetorical training in the Hellenistic and Roman world; and methodologies in Roman schools of law. 

(2) Natural History: How was knowledge about “natural history” — including subjects such as cosmology, geography, topography, paradoxography, and ethnography — created, organized, and taught in Mediterranean antiquity? To what extent was “natural history” a category of learning and knowing? Given the apparent absence of these subjects from ancient curricula, how might we explain the widespread transmission of scientific concepts and their integration with other forms of knowledge? Other potential topics include the transmission, use, and suitability for teaching of works about natural history; the relationship between education and the representation of nature in art; and the role of public lectures, sermons, and demonstrations in imparting and shaping such knowledge.



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Ancient Fiction and Early Christian and Jewish Narrative

Eric Vanden Eykel
R.Gillian Glass
Description: The Section on Ancient Fiction and Early Jewish and Christian Narrative fosters methodologically diverse analyses of these ancient narratives, including: their interplay and interconnections; socio-cultural contexts; representations of reality, including religion; and narrative form, including plot, character, style, voice, etc.

Call for papers: The Ancient Fiction and Early Christian and Jewish Narrative program unit is planning four sessions at the 2024 Annual Meeting. The first section will be co-sponsored with the Archaeology of Religion in the Roman World program unit and will focus on “travel and location in ancient fiction.” For this session we invite proposals that explore materiality, place, and the construction and representation of travel and mobility in antiquity. The second will focus on the topic of “animals in ancient fiction.” For this session we invite proposals that focus on non-human animals and their various functions and representations in ancient fiction. For the final two sessions, we invite proposals on any topic related to the interests of the Ancient Fiction and Early Christian and Jewish Narrative program unit.

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Ancient Jewish and Christian Meals and Their Afterlives

Chan Sok Park
Lillian I. Larsen
Description: Building on the achievements of the Meals in the Greco-Roman world unit, this section will pursue a comparative approach with later developments of meal practice and discourse in Judaism and Christianity. Expanding previous research on early Jewish and Christian meals, we will consider the reception of formative Greco-Roman meal practice in Late Antiquity and beyond. Through studying the reception history of early Christian and Jewish meal-texts and their dynamic evolution, we will examine the complex development of meal ritual using an intra-religious and inter-religious lens.

Call for papers: Building on the achievements of the Meals in the Greco-Roman world unit, this section will pursue a comparative approach with later developments of meal practice and discourse in Judaism and Christianity. Expanding previous research on early Jewish and Christian meals, we will consider the reception of formative Greco-Roman meal practice in Late Antiquity and beyond. Through studying the reception history of early Christian and Jewish meal-texts and their dynamic evolution, we will examine the complex development of meal ritual using an intra-religious and inter-religious lens.

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Ancient Near Eastern Iconography and the Bible

Izaak J. de Hulster
Joel M. LeMon
Description: This section examines the ways that ancient pictorial material informs interpretations of biblical texts. We welcome papers that explore the relationships between iconographic and textual materials as well as papers that deal exclusively with iconographic issues.

Call for papers: The Ancient Near Eastern Iconography and the Bible Program Unit will receive proposals for an open session and two joint sessions for this year's meeting. For the open session, as in previous years, we welcome paper proposals within the broad interdisciplinary framework of iconography and biblical studies. We are pleased to collaborate with the Book of Ezekiel Program Unit in sponsoring a joint session focused on the theme of “Imagery and Imagistic Language in the Book of Ezekiel.” For this session, we particularly encourage proposals that consider the relationship between the text of Ezekiel and the iconographic and imagistic contexts from which it emerged. The Ancient Near Eastern Iconography and the Bible, the Biblical Lexicography, and the Nature Imagery and Conceptions of Nature in the Bible Program Units are also pleased to announce another year of collaboration. We are planning a joint session on the theme of “Identification of Flora and Fauna in the Bible.” We encourage proposals for papers that engage methodological considerations on textual, iconographical, archeological and/or biological materials in establishing the varieties of plants, animals, and other aspects of nature that appear in the Bible.

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Anglican Association of Biblical Scholars

Jonathan E. Soyars
Elizabeth Struthers Malbon
Description: The Anglican Association of Biblical Scholars is an international association of biblical scholars who are affiliated with the churches of the Anglican Communion, including the Episcopal Church in the U.S., the Anglican Church of Canada, and the Church of England. Its purpose is to support biblical scholarship at all levels in the Anglican Communion. AABS is dedicated to fostering greater involvement of biblical scholars in the life of Anglican churches, and to promoting the development of resources for biblical studies in Anglican theological education.

Call for papers: Plans for the 2024 meeting of the Anglican Association of Biblical Scholars (AABS) are still under discussion, although we are not calling for paper proposals. In addition, there may be a virtual meeting (via Zoom) in the early summer; information will be made available through announcements on the SBL website and in the SBL newsletter and through direct emailing to all on our emailing list. If you wish to be added to that list, email Elizabeth Struthers Malbon at malbon@vt.edu with your request.

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Apocalypse Now: Apocalyptic Reception and Impact throughout History

Ana T. Valdez
Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte
Description: Apocalypse Now is conceived as an interdisciplinary research group aiming to analyze the effective history of biblical and related apocalyptic literature (Daniel, Revelation, Enoch etc.) in the creation, establishment, and development of eschatological groups from antiquity to the present within the Abrahamic traditions, and in particular those of apocalyptic nature. It is of much interest to our work to observe how those groups developed networks of eschatological nature throughout history that can be found today at the basis of some social and political movements. By analysing in tandem the nature of the different groups over the centuries and how eschatological hope circulated among them at different moments, this research unit aims to foster and develop new interpretation theories that can lead to a better understanding of the use of apocalyptic expectations in the 21st century, and in particular, of the processes that led apocalypticism to take peaceful and/or violent forms.

Call for papers: One of the stock elements in early Jewish apocalyptic descriptions of the final period preceding the end of history is the inversion of the human and natural order. Family and friends rise against each other, parents fight their children, and vice versa, and the order or nature is disturbed. The 2024 session of this group focuses on how the motif of the disturbance of the natural order has played and plays a role in end-time narratives. Obviously, the current climate crisis warrants attention in this respect, but also end-time narratives in a more distant past. How did or does the motif of the disturbance of the natural order play a role in end-time narratives and the ways they intended to influence people? Therefore, we accept papers on this topic, and we will also accept papers for an open session on themes connected to our research seminar.

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Aramaic Studies

Andrew D. Gross
Leeor Gottlieb
Description: The Aramaic studies section is intended to provide a forum for scholars interested in various aspects of Aramaic language. Previous paper topics have included aspects of the Targumim, Qumran Aramaic, Peshitta, Samaritan papyri, and Elephantine Aramaic.

Call for papers:

The Aramaic Studies Section will be organizing four open-call sessions this year. We invite proposals for two open-theme sessions on any aspect of Aramaic languages, texts, and culture. We welcome presentations from any chronological period, from Old Aramaic down through the dialects of Late Antiquity and beyond. Previous paper topics have focused on topics related to Old Aramaic inscriptions, the Elephantine papyri, Biblical Aramaic, the Aramaic of the Dead Sea Scrolls (Samaritan papyri, Qumran, and elsewhere), Syriac language and literature, the Targumim, magical texts, etc.

In addition to our two open-theme sessions, we are co-sponsoring two joint sessions:

(1) This joint session, co-sponsored with the Textual Criticism of the Hebrew Bible unit, will explore theological-exegetical elements in Targumic literature. It is widely recognized that during the transmission process of the Hebrew-Aramaic text, both scribes and translators introduced exegetical nuances through the omission, addition, and/or subtraction of elements from their source texts. These maneuvers have given rise to various forms of exegesis, including linguistic, contextual, and/or theological exegesis. With this in mind, we invite papers that explore the topic “Exegesis Across Textual Traditions.”

(2) Our other joint session is being co-sponsored with the Midrash unit. Possible topics for this open-call session include: "Exegetical questions in the Targumim," “Aramaic in the earlier Midrashim;” “Midrashim that are preserved entirely in Aramaic, e.g., the Esther Midrash in the Babylonian Talmud;” “What is the function of the Aramaic sections in later Midrash? Why not Hebrew;” “The Aramaic dialects in midrashic narratives in the Jerusalem Talmud;” “Does Aramaic in Midrash reflect a spoken language at the time when Christianity developed?" “Aramaic in Genesis Rabbah.”

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Archaeology of Religion in the Roman World

C. M. Thomas
Lynn R. Huber
Description: The goal of this unit is to promote the study of material culture associated with religious activity in the Hellenistic and Roman periods and to showcase new theoretical approaches to this evidence. Presentations related to Second Temple Judaism, early Christianity, and Greco-Roman religion, broadly defined, are all welcome.

Call for papers: The Archaeology of Religion in the Roman World Section invites paper proposals for the following sessions: 1) The archaeological ephemeral: how does our existing material evidence relate to absences and lacunae, to the individual items, and categories of objects, deliberately or accidentally erased or excluded from the archaeological record? What strategies can we responsibly use to account for what is no longer preserved? 2) Surf and Turf: we invite papers that explore connections between land and sea in material culture, in an homage to our meeting site in San Diego. 3) For our third session, which will be co-sponsored with the Senses, Cultures and Biblical Worlds Section, we invite proposals on the senses and material culture: how and why did material culture — objects, spaces, built environments — evoke the sensory experience of the inhabitants of the ancient world? 4) For our fourth session, which will be co-sponsored with the Ancient Fiction and Early Christian and Jewish Narrative section, we invite proposals on travel and location in ancient fiction. 5) As always, we welcome proposals for papers exploring any other topics related to the archaeology of religion in the Roman World.

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Archaeology of Roman Palestine

Dennis Mizzi
Matthew J. Grey
Description: This program unit explores the socio-political, economic, cultural, and religious history of Roman Palestine (ca. first century BCE to fifth century CE) through its material remains. The goal is to emphasize the importance of archaeology as an independent source of evidence for the study of early Judaism and Christianity.

Call for papers: Following its recent emphases on sacred space and pilgrimage, in 2024 the Archaeology of Roman Palestine seminar will turn its focus to the archaeology and material culture of domestic spaces in larger Judea during the late Hellenistic through Byzantine periods. These topics, broadly conceived, may include the architectural remains of residences and households in either urban or rural settings, as well as all aspects of daily life reflected by the artifacts, assemblages, or décor found within these spaces. The first session in this two-part series seeks papers that deal with these topics as found in elite settings, such as within the wealthy domestic spheres of Jerusalem, the cities of Galilee, the Decapolis, or sites along the Coastal Plain, as well as palatial complexes or country villas scattered throughout the region. The second session in seeks papers that deal with these topics as found in non-elite settings, such as within the lower-class domestic spheres of Galilean villages, the non-elite urban areas and hinterland of Jerusalem, or other similar sites throughout the region. Papers that place the archaeology of these settings into conversation with the literary sources of the period are also welcome. It is hoped that by exploring these and related topics, this session can help us better understand the spectrum of lived experience for individuals and households within the region, as well as to illuminate the cultural matrix of early Judaism, the early Jesus movement, and other contemporary social circles.

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Art and Religions of Antiquity

David Frankfurter
Vasiliki M. Limberis
Description: This consultation examines the visual and material evidence of the religions of the Mediterranean basin in antiquity (Judaism, Christianity, and Greco-Roman "paganism") as well as the methods by which scholars study these materials alongside textual or documentary evidence.

Call for papers: Traveling Objects and Objects as Mediators
(Co-sponsored by AAR "Religion in Pre-Modern Europe and Mediterranean Group)
Inspired by Georgia Frank's 2023 book "Unfinished Christians," especially ch. 3, we invite papers that discuss portable an shifting objects in lived religions; e.g. that mediate between religious cultures or act as portable signifiers of religious identity, diversity, continuity, and/or transformation. Examples of portable mediating objects might include relics, reliquaries, amulets, icons, talismans, monstrances, elaborate vestments, jewelry, scrolls, codices, holy people, pilgrimage badges, lamps, censors, votive objects, spolia, and other "portabilia."
br/> Technicolor Religion: Polychromy in the Material World of Ancient Religions Ancient Religions were enacted among multicolored mosaics, domestic and shrine statuary, wall-paintings and icons, fabrics, jewelry, amulets, votive objects and smoke. Colors glittered, emanated, changed, and transmitted spirits and divine presence. Even texts - novels, apocalypses, martyrologies - stressed the polychromy of religion. Thus our session asks what role color plays in the performance and experience of religious media and the material object? What did color mean and what were its textures? Were colors associated with particular places, times, gods and festivals? If color is mediated through texts, then what senses could it arouse? We invite papers that address real objects in their material presence and that deepen and theorize polychromy in religion(s) of antiquity.

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Asian and Asian-American Hermeneutics

Janette H. Ok
Sharon Jacob
Description: The unit promotes Asian and Asian American biblical scholarship, highlighting the broad range of diversity that makes up the different Asian and Asian American communities. It also aims to contribute to diversifying biblical scholarship and expanding biblical studies in terms of topics, approaches and discourses.

Call for papers: For our two open sessions, the Asian and Asian-American Hermeneutics Seminar invites proposals for papers related to the following themes: Theme 1: "Indigenous, Multiethnic, and Multiracial Readings of the Bible from Asian and Asian American Contexts." Submissions may draw on various perspectives, including but not limited to Dalit readings, tribal interpretations, multi-racial and multi-ethnic viewpoints. Special consideration will be given to papers that apply these hermeneutics to their reading and interpretation of the Bible. This session will be cosponsored with the Minoritized Criticism and Biblical Interpretation unit. Theme 2: "Reading the Bible in, from, as well as to Asian and Asian American Contexts and Communities." We welcome papers that examine methodological issues involved in interpretation and hermeneutics, as well as papers that offer readings of specific texts and passages.* Both veteran and first-time presenters are encouraged to submit proposals. We will also be co-sponsoring three sessions of invited panelists: 1) A book review session on "The New Testament in Color: A Multiethnic Bible Commentary," eds. Esau McCaulley, Janette H. Ok, Osvaldo Padilla, and Amy Peeler (IVP Academic, 2024), with the Theological Interpretation of Scripture unit; 2) A book review session on "Reading in These Times: Purposes and Practices of Minoritized Biblical criticism," eds. Tat-siong Benny Liew and Fernando F. Segovia (SBL Press, 2024), with the Minoritized Criticism and Biblical Interpretation unit; and 3) A session on "Bible Translation and Decolonization in Global Contexts," with the Postcolonial Studies and Biblical Studies unit.

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Assyriology and the Bible

Gina Konstantopoulos
Shalom E. Holtz
Description: Assyriology and the Bible section provides the focused context for papers dealing with various Mesopotamian-related topics. It seeks to generate strong integrative research between the disciplines of Assyriology and Biblical Studies by encouraging adept historiographic, philological, literary and/or iconographic work.

Call for papers: In San Diego, the Assyriology and the Bible Section will host an open, joint session on “Methodology and Cognate Comparanda” in the study of the Hebrew Bible, Assyriology, and the wider ancient Near East, together with the Hebrew Bible and Cognate Literature section. Proposals on scholarship that bridges across these research areas, or discusses tools and methods to incorporate their different types of evidence, both textual and material, are welcome. Additionally, Assyriology and the Bible will host open sessions, for which we will consider proposals on any subject related to the study of both Assyriology and the Bible.

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Bible and Emotion

Ari Mermelstein
Kathy Barrett Dawson
Description: This section focuses on understanding the spectrum of emotions displayed throughout the Bible in their literary and cultural contexts, informed by the burgeoning cross-disciplinary study of emotion in contemporary philosophy, psychology, literary theory, linguistics, neuroscience, politics, economics and other fields.

Call for papers: The Bible and Emotion Section will host four sessions in 2024. The first session is OPEN. We invite proposals related to the critical study of emotion across the full range of biblical literature and closely related literature. We are interested in papers that examine divine and/or human emotions in a biblical text, set of texts, book, or genre. The second session will be devoted to the comparative study of emotion: how do the emotions within the Hebrew Bible and New Testament corpora resemble, differ from, appropriate, resist, sublimate, and/or transform the emotions of the wider cultural world? The third session will be an invited panel focusing on the interplay between cognitive approaches to emotions and affect theory. We will also host a joint session with the Ritual in the Biblical World section. The social nature of ritual necessarily engages in both individual emotional experience and communal emotional experience. Ranging from joy to disgust, emotional experience is often described as one of the primary outcomes of the ritual behavior as presented in the biblical text. By examining the close relationship between emotion and ritual, the efficaciousness of the ritual behavior may be explored as well as the manner by which ritual was used to form, maintain and excise social structures. This session is the first of a series of joint sessions in which the relationship between ritual and emotion as presented in the biblical texts and surrounding Levantine cultures will be explored with a hoped for volume following the conclusion of the series.

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Bible and Ethics

Erica Mongé-Greer
Prof. Dr. Joel R. White
Description: This unit explores ethical issues related to the biblical canon. It seeks to bring together exegetes of the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament in order to discuss similarities, differences, and intertextual connections between the various ethical traditions in biblical literature and their respective contexts.

Call for papers: The Bible and Ethics Section warmly invites scholars and researchers to submit their contributions for the upcoming conference, where we will delve into two areas of scholarship involving biblical ethics. Firstly, in an "Interdisciplinary Methodologies in Biblical Ethics" track, we encourage submissions that explore the innovative fusion of biblical studies with diverse disciplines such as sociology, psychology, anthropology, and more. By doing so, we seek to illuminate novel dimensions of ethical inquiries embedded within biblical texts, unveiling diverse cultural, historical, and social contexts that enrich our understanding of these teachings. Secondly, in the "The Ethics of Wealth and Poverty in Biblical Texts" section, we invite submissions to examine the Bible's nuanced perspectives on wealth distribution, the moral responsibilities of the affluent, and the treatment of the disadvantaged. These discussions hold profound relevance in contemporary dialogues surrounding economic disparities and social justice. We eagerly anticipate contributions that foster an environment where scholarship thrives and our comprehension of biblical ethics deepens. Join us in shaping the discourse and unraveling the enduring relevance of biblical principles in today's complex world.

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Bible and Film

Brandon R. Grafius
Rhonda Burnette-Bletsch
Description: This unit focuses on the critical analysis and interpretation of the multiple intersections between Bible and Cinema. Our focus is broad, giving attention to “Bible films” (“Bible on Film”), the use and treatment of biblical texts in films (“Bible in Film”), how films and biblical texts can function in analogous ways (“Bible as Film” / “Film as Bible”), and how Bible and Film can be placed into mutually critical dialogue. We explore how biblical texts can enhance our understanding of cinema, and how films can offer lenses for helping us (re)interpret biblical texts. In short, we welcome papers that seek to illuminate our understanding of Bible, Film, or both. (This unit was titled Scripture and Film through 2013).

Call for papers: We will be hosting two open sessions, one joint session, and an invited round table. Proposals for open sessions should focus on the critical analysis and interpretation of the multiple intersections between Bible and Cinema. Our focus is broad, giving attention to “Bible films” (“Bible on Film”), the use and treatment of biblical texts in films (“Bible in Film”), how films and biblical texts can function in analogous ways (“Bible as Film” / “Film as Bible”), and how Bible and Film can be placed into mutually critical dialogue. We explore how biblical texts can enhance our understanding of cinema, and how films can offer lenses for helping us (re)interpret biblical texts. In short, we welcome papers that seek to illuminate our understanding of Bible, Film, or both. We are also offering a joint session, in conjunction with The Bible and Popular Culture unit, on the ways in which characters and narrative ideas move from different spaces in popular culture into the space of film. This might mean intellectual property such as Barbie, comic book heroes such as the Marvel Universe, or pop culture figures such as Ed and Lorraine Warren who have found a second life as horror movie heroes. What transformations do characters and texts undergo in order to find a new life on screen? What is shifted and/or constructed in narrative content and structure to make this adaptation occur? And how do these intertexts, existing in multiple spaces, work together to generate meaning in popular culture? And, crucially for the interests of our units, how do biblical narratives and themes enter into this hybrid product, or allow us to understand these adaptations in different ways? Papers in the open and joint sessions are scheduled for 40 minute slots, with the expectation that presenters will include roughly 10 minutes of film clips. A fourth session, a round table discussion on film and pedagogy, will consist of invited scholars, and is not open to proposal submissions.

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Bible and Popular Culture

Elizabeth Rae Coody
Katherine Low
Description: This unit explores and analyzes the relationship between the Bible and popular culture. It focuses on materials designed for everyday life—comic strips, advertisements, theme parks, popular music, etc. Drawing from a variety of disciplines and analyzing both the printed and visual media, presenters will explore the interaction between biblical text and popular culture.

Call for papers: OPEN session: We welcome proposals on any aspect of popular culture across the range of biblical literature. We are interested in works that engage clear methodology and theory for the reciprocal way popular culture in any setting or medium engages the Bible and how the Bible informs popular culture. All may join us at our business meeting that follows.

THEMED session: Bible and Murder Mystery: Inspired by the forthcoming book by Dan Clanton, God and the Little Grey Cells: Religion in Agatha Christie's Poirot Stories (June 2024) this session invites proposals that explore the relationship between the Bible and crime fiction, detective stories, mystery novels, and related work through the present day.

Joint Session with AAR Religion and Popular Culture: For this collaboration, we invite proposals for papers and pre-arranged sessions on censorship and book banning that traverse the study of religion and studies of biblical or sacred texts. For full call, see AAR Religion and Popular Culture.

Joint Session with SBL Bible and Film: “Adaptations, translations, and intellectual property: Moving from pop culture to film (or vice versa)” The Bible and Popular Culture unit, in conjunction with the Bible and Film unit, is hosting a joint session on the ways in which characters and narrative ideas move from different spaces in popular culture into the space of film. For full call, see Bible and Film.

Joint Session with Bible and Practical Theology: “Contemporary Black Music and Genre-Bending/Transmedia/Interdisciplinary, Black Theology, and the Bible in Popular Culture Analysis” Music, art, film, and other media and the Bible in the work of Beyoncé and other contemporary artists have been a tool for Womanist and Black Theology. For this collaboration, we are interested in creating a joint session that explores these areas. For the full call, see Bible and Practical Theology.

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Bible and Practical Theology

Terry Ann Smith
Yolanda Norton
Description: This section aims to promote the development of integrative knowledge centered upon the intersections between biblical interpretation and practical theology. We want to challenge both doctrinal reductionism and the distancing inherent in the historical-critical method, as well as encourage relational and interactive readings of both human situations and biblical texts in order to reveal their multivalence.

Call for papers: Bible and Practical Theology will host four sessions. The first session is an open call and will explore the intersections between the ongoing repercussions of COVID-19 and the Bible. Submissions could explore the impact of ancient plagues and afflictions but also propose modern applications that analyze the enduring consequences of plague and disease, migratory patterns, famine, food access, houselessness, death, disease, isolation, quarantine, and contagion. The second session invites papers that interrogate the rise and fall of leaders in ancient Israel and the Levant, and their impact on society. Papers should explore the narratives and reception history of Saul, Solomon, David, and other kings in Israel’s history. In particular, papers should explore the social, political, and theological construction of their rise, decline, and eventual fall as well as the prophetic response to the societal impact of their reigns. Papers should not only explore the historical and literary impact of these biblical narratives but also provide insight into the development and decline of trust between contemporary political leadership and various socio-political, ethnic, gendered, and religious groups. The third session is a joint session with The Bible and Popular Culture unit. Music, art, film, and other media and the Bible in the work of Beyoncé and other contemporary artists have been a vehicle for Womanist and Black Theology. Papers might treat how Black women wrapped up in the work of God in the world resource themselves and each other, use the Bible, treat social ethics, racism, intersectional oppression, and other ideas. The fourth session is a joint session with Intertextuality and New Testament. This session is an invited panel.

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Bible and Visual Art

Andrew E. Arterbury
Meredith Massar Munson
Description: The purpose of the section is to provide a forum at the national SBL to explore historical, hermeneutical, theological, iconographic, and/or theoretical aspects related to the interpretation of the Jewish and Christian Scriptures in visual art through the centuries.

Call for papers: The Bible and Visual Art section welcomes submissions for two open sessions at the Annual Meeting in 2024: We invite proposals that fall within our broad purpose: to explore historical, hermeneutical, theological, iconographic and/or theoretical aspects related to the interpretation of the Jewish and Christian Scriptures in visual art through the centuries.

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Bible in America

Claudia Setzer
Mark Chancey
Description: This group will examine the uses of both an abstract idea of "the Bible" and of particular biblical narratives by different groups, considering the Bible's utility for social control, resistance, identity and group formation. Our forum will bring together disparate discussions touching on the Bible

Call for papers: This group will examine the uses of both an abstract idea of "the Bible" and of particular biblical narratives by different groups, considering the Bible's utility for social control, resistance, identity and group formation. Our forum will bring together disparate discussions touching on the Bible

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Bible, Myth, and Myth Theory

Andrew Tobolowsky
M. David Litwa
Description: This section (a) provides a forum for sustained and focused attention on the concept of myth and its place in biblical studies and (b) encourages the development and refinement of multi- and interdisciplinary approaches to this area of inquiry.

Call for papers: We will be hosting two sessions this year. The first will be an open session We welcome proposals on the use of myth and myth theory in biblical studies. We especially encourage papers that explore various definitions of myth and what it means to utilize this category within biblical studies. We welcome participants from diverse specializations, including Hebrew Bible, New Testament, Ancient Near Eastern Literature, and Greco-Roman Religions. We aim to include studies covering a range of methodologies, critical theories, and types of data: textual and literary criticisms, philology, cognitive sciences, archeology, art history, and social and anthropological theories. We welcome scholars from a range of career positions (senior, mid-career, junior, as well as graduate students) and from a variety of personal and institutional backgrounds. The second session is titled Studying Biblical Myth through Comparison. This session will feature invited papers exploring potential intersections between the study of myth in biblical literature and in other corpora. These papers, which will investigate a range of topics, are meant to illustrate the immense potential of efforts to bring the study of biblical myth into conversation with the study of myth elsewhere, and to draw attention to new approaches and new techniques that might be useful for the study of biblical myth.

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Biblical Archaeology Society

Glenn Corbett
Description: The Biblical Archaeology Society (BAS) was founded in 1974 as a nonprofit, nondenominational, educational organization dedicated to the dissemination of information about archaeology in the Bible lands. BAS’s flagship publication, Biblical Archaeology Review, is the only magazine that connects the academic study of archaeology to a broad general audience eager to understand the world of the Bible.

Call for papers: This program unit is not accepting papers for the 2024 Annual Meeting.

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Biblical Exegesis from Eastern Orthodox Perspectives

Leslie Baynes
Michael G. Azar
Description: This unit fosters interpretation of biblical texts through engagement with Eastern Orthodox interpretive tradition. Such engagement might include critical reflection on Eastern patristics, Orthodox liturgical tradition, and modern Orthodox theologians to stimulate theological interpretation. The consultation will bring Orthodox perspectives to bear on contemporary exegetical issues.

Call for papers: The unit welcomes proposals for four sessions: 1) Figural vs. Historical Exegesis: This session will focus on ancient “figural” and “historical” exegesis and the supposed dichotomy between them. We especially welcome papers that address the relationship between these types of exegesis and the development of Christian doctrine in antiquity and/or the Orthodox traditions that followed. 2) Orthodox Christianity and Judaism: This session seeks to widen Jewish-Christian dialogue by considering how Orthodox exegetical traditions, liturgy, history, contemporary thought, and ongoing political experience, especially in the Middle East, can and should affect not only Orthodox Christianity’s own relationship to Jews and Judaism, but also its relationship to Jewish-Christian dialogue more broadly. We welcome submissions from a wide range of methodological and disciplinary approaches. Cosponsored with the AAR Eastern Orthodox Studies Unit. 3) Universalism: This session will explore Kierkegaard’s nuanced and unique treatment of the issue of universal salvation. Attention will be given to the roots of universalism in certain features of the New Testament, its blossoming in the thought of patristic theologians like Origen and Gregory of Nyssa, and its re-emergence in the nineteenth century and contemporary Orthodox thought. Cosponsored with the AAR Kierkegaard, Religion, and Culture Unit. 4) Divine inspiration: This session aims to reconstruct the dialectic of continuity and discontinuity among ancient authors (e.g. Plato, Philo, Plutarch, Origen, Chrysostom) reflecting on the transmission of divine knowledge to humans via inspiration or divination. Cosponsored with the SBL Religion and Philosophy in Late Antiquity Unit. For more information on any of these sessions, see https://orthodoxbiblical.org/sbl-sessions/.

Tags: Religious Traditions and Scriptures (History of Interpretation / Reception History / Reception Criticism)

Biblical Greek Language and Linguistics

James D. Dvorak
Xiaxia Xue
Description: This section aims to promote and discuss ongoing research into biblical Greek language and linguistics, covering the Septuagint and particularly the New Testament. While traditional language studies are welcome, methods derived from modern linguistic theories and their applications are encouraged.

Call for papers: This section aims to promote and discuss ongoing research into biblical Greek language and linguistics, covering the Septuagint and particularly the New Testament. While traditional language studies are welcome, methods derived from modern linguistic theories and their applications are encouraged.

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Biblical Hebrew Poetry

Elizabeth R.Hayes
Jeffery M. Leonard
Description: This section focuses on all aspects of Hebrew poetry in the biblical canon: archaic poetry, the role of oral tradition, poetic meter, parallelism, structural and nonstructural poetic devices, imagery, metaphor, and figurative language. Papers dealing with any portion of poetry in the Hebrew Bible are welcome.

Call for papers: Biblical Hebrew Poetry will be hosting four sessions: The FIRST session will be “Woman Zion’s (Round)-Table.” This interactive session will invite participants to consider the fruitful interface of different methodological approaches for considering the imagery of Zion as female personification in biblical literature. Invited panelists will draw on their own area of expertise to inform conversation among themselves and to foster active discussion amongst participants. The aims of this session are to consider the figure of woman Zion from multiple disciplinary perspectives and to consider the impact of methodological decisions on scholarly outcomes as well as to foster and further discussion of the Zion figure in biblical scholarship. This will be a joint session with the Metaphor and Book of Isaiah program units. The SECOND session will be “The Poetry of Lamentations.” The book of Lamentations remains a vital proving ground for the consideration both of Hebrew poetic style and of Israel’s religious understanding of the exile. This session welcomes papers that further advance our understanding of this moving work. The THIRD session will be “The Poetry of Joy.” The great tragedies of biblical Israel’s historical experience and universal challenges of the human experience combined to produce the compelling laments that appear so frequently in the Psalter and, in related forms, in other parts of the Hebrew Bible. Less often considered, however, is the Bible’s poetry of joy (simchah). Even in the face of life’s challenges, the singers of ancient Israel found occasion to celebrate, to revel in divine blessing, and to give poetic form to the expression of joy. This session welcomes papers that consider this fascinating area of research. The FOURTH session will be a general open session: We invite general papers regarding any aspect of Biblical Hebrew Poetry.

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Biblical Law

Andrew D. Gross
Hilary Lipka
Description: The purpose of the Biblical Law Section is to promote interdisciplinary research on ancient Near Eastern, biblical, and post-biblical law. Methodological perspectives include historical-critical, literary, legal-historical, feminist, and social-scientific approaches.

Call for papers:

The Biblical Law Section will be organizing four open-call sessions this year. We invite proposals for two open sessions on any aspect of the study of biblical law, including work related to cuneiform documents, the Dead Sea Scrolls and other Second Temple Literature, questions of Pentateuchal criticism, legal history, gender analysis, social-scientific analysis, and newer methodologies.

In addition to our two open-theme sessions, we will co-sponsoring two joint sessions:

(1) This session, co-sponsored with the Ancient Education unit, will focus on legal education in antiquity. We invite proposals that explore legal education, the transmission of legal knowledge, and the place of law within broader educational contexts and institutions in the ancient Mediterranean and Near East. Topics that could be addressed include (but are not limited to): legal education in the training of scribes in Mesopotamia, Israel, and other parts of the ancient Near East; legal education and the transmission of legal tradition in ancient Judaism; legal education and judicial training in the Persian Empire; the relationship between legal education and rhetorical training in the Hellenistic and Roman world; and methodologies in Roman schools of law.

(2) This session, co-sponsored with the Book of Samuel unit, will focus on the theme "Echoes of Torah in Samuel". We invite proposals that explore the relationship between biblical law (defined widely) and the book of Samuel. Topics may include (but are not limited to) common law in the book of Samuel, allusions to the Torah in Samuel, legal concepts as reflected in Samuel compared to their reflection elsewhere in the Hebrew Bible, and developments in biblical law as reflected in Samuel's recensional history.



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Biblical Lexicography

Reinier de Blois
William A. Ross
Description: The Section brings together those working on lexicography and lexicology of ancient biblical languages. The discussions seek to bring the theoretical to bear on the practical task of dictionary making and encourage research in the area of historical lexical analysis.

Call for papers: The Biblical Lexicography program unit will organize four sessions in 2024, which are as follows: 1) An open call for papers relating to the lexicography of Greek from any period in relation to the biblical and/or parabiblical corpora. 2) An open call for papers relating to the lexicography of biblical Hebrew. 3) An open call for papers focusing on the role Information Technology (with a special focus on Artificial Intelligence) can play in the lexicography of biblical languages. 4) The Ancient Near Eastern Iconography and the Bible, the Biblical Lexicography, and the Nature Imagery and Conceptions of Nature in the Bible Program Units are pleased to announce another year of collaboration. We are planning a joint session on the theme of “Identification of Flora and Fauna in the Bible.” We encourage proposals for papers that engage methodological considerations on textual, iconographical, archeological and/or biological materials in establishing the varieties of plants, animals, and other aspects of nature that appear in the Bible.

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Biblical Literature and the Hermeneutics of Trauma

David G. Garber, Jr.
LeAnn Snow Flesher
Description: This unit studies methods for employing various definitions of trauma to interpret particular sets of biblical and extra-canonical texts, giving attention to the relationship between personal and communal dimensions of trauma, and to applying biblical interpretation in other theological disciplines.

Call for papers: The Biblical Literature and Hermeneutics of Trauma section has created a call for papers for two sessions: The first session is a directed call for papers on the topic of divine absence as a response to traumatic circumstances in biblical literature. The second session will be an open session to which we invite proposals of all types that seek to interpret biblical text through the lens of trauma theory(s). Successful proposals for all sessions should include analysis of biblical texts employing a theoretical framework that involves insights from trauma studies.

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Biblical Studies and Spiritual Care: Intersections of Pastoral Praxis and Biblical Hermeneutics

Peter-Ben Smit
Silvia Castelli
Description: This unit explores the mutual contribution of biblical and related literature and Spiritual Care (hereafter, SC). What new hermeneutical insights can scholars, students, and practitioners of SC, in the different contexts they work in, provide to biblical literature? And what corpus of texts, methods, approaches, and conceptual tools can biblical scholars offer to SC? This unit aims at integrating in biblical scholarship the hermeneutical perspectives offered by the multifarious contexts of SC and highlights the relevance of biblical literature for the training/professionalization of chaplains.

Call for papers: This unit explores the mutual contribution of biblical and related literature and Spiritual Care (hereafter, SC). What new hermeneutical insights can scholars, students, and practitioners of SC, in the different contexts they work in, provide to biblical literature? And what corpus of texts, methods, approaches, and conceptual tools can biblical scholars offer to SC? This unit aims at integrating in biblical scholarship the hermeneutical perspectives offered by the multifarious contexts of SC and highlights the relevance of biblical literature for the training/professionalization of chaplains.

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Book History and Biblical Literatures

J. Gregory Given
Daniel Picus
Description: This unit investigates how insights from Book History illuminate scriptural literatures. We marshal scholars of various fields in a theoretical and historical conversation about the culturally contingent concepts of text, authorship, readership, publication, and materiality.

Call for papers: This unit investigates how insights from Book History illuminate scriptural literatures. We gather scholars of Hebrew Bible/ANE, Judaism, Christianity, Nag Hammadi, Syriac studies, and modernity in a theoretical and historical conversation about the culturally contingent concepts of text, authorship, readership, publication, and materiality. We are accepting abstracts for two panels, with two additional co-sponsored panels of invited papers. The first panel is an open call: we are interested in new work engaging with questions of Book History, broadly conceived, and are particularly hoping to highlight the work of early career researchers, junior scholars, and graduate students. Our second panel aims to focus on the lives of individual manuscripts. We invite abstracts for short (10–12 minute) papers that present a profile or “biography” of a single manuscript, taking into account—for example—its production, use in original context, transmission, use in secondary or tertiary contexts, storage, burial, excavation, trafficking, dismemberment, reconstruction, display, and/or digitization. Our hope is that this panel will spark productive conversations by juxtaposing manuscripts representing diverse traditions and different methods of scholarly analysis. Our joint panel with Religious Worlds of Late Antiquity will invite reviewers to engage Monika Amsler's The Babylonian Talmud and Late Antique Book Culture, and our joint panel with the Metacriticism of Biblical Scholarship will invite panelists to present on the topic of the Vulnerable Bible.

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Book of Acts

Brittany E. Wilson
Drew Strait
Description: This Section (1) explores new strategies for reading Acts; (2) proposes solutions to existing exegetical, literary, text critical and historical problems associated with Acts; (3) highlights new areas of inquiry regarding Acts; and (4) assesses the significance of the history of Acts scholarship.

Call for papers: This Section (1) explores new strategies for reading Acts; (2) proposes solutions to existing exegetical, literary, text critical and historical problems associated with Acts; (3) highlights new areas of inquiry regarding Acts; and (4) assesses the significance of the history of Acts scholarship.

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Book of Daniel

Amanda Davis Bledsoe
Michael Segal
Description: The Book of Daniel consultation seeks to promote new and inter-disciplinary scholarship on Daniel and Daniel-related literature (both canonical and pseudepigraphical literature). It welcomes a range of analytical approaches to Daniel, but especially encourages ideological, theological, and literary treatments.

Call for papers: The Book of Daniel consultation seeks to promote new and inter-disciplinary scholarship on Daniel and Daniel-related literature (both canonical and pseudepigraphical literature). It welcomes a range of analytical approaches to Daniel, but especially encourages ideological, theological, and literary treatments.

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Book of Deuteronomy

Bill T. Arnold
Madhavi Nevader
Description: This unit provides a forum for the discussion of Deuteronomy as a book, its origins and growth, as well as its reception by different groups of readers in antiquity.

Call for papers: The Deuteronomy Program Unit will have three sessions in 2024. (1) An open session on Deuteronomy and Centralization. The committee welcomes papers that explore the concentration of the cult in a single location (Kultzentralisation), including the controverted issue of cult reform (Kultreinigung). Studies of all aspects are welcome, including textual investigations (esp. Deut 12 and the legal core), the role of the concept in the history of scholarship, interactions with Deuteronomy’s concept of centralization in other biblical traditions inside and outside of the Pentateuch, comparative ancient Near Eastern phenomena, and sociological and theological features of the concept. (2) An invited panel on Deuteronomy and Centralization. (3) An open joint session with the Transmission of Traditions in the Second Temple Period Section. Here we welcome papers that explore the transmission of traditions specifically connected to Deuteronomy in Second Temple and Early Judaism(s). We understand transmission broadly, encouraging questions regarding the material, iconographic, theological, textual and/or historical transmission of Deuteronomy.

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Book of Ezekiel

Tova Ganzel
Joel B Kemp
Description: This Section has two aims. First, it seeks to bring together scholars working on the book of Ezekiel to share research and conclusions about the book. Second, it encourages an expressly theological approach to the book.

Call for papers: The Ezekiel section will hold three sessions in 2024: (1) The Book of Ezekiel - This session is an open session. We invite submissions on any topic with a linguistic, textual, literary, historical or reception historical focus related to Ezekiel. (2) Ezekiel's Visionary Temple - This session will consist of invited papers exploring Ezekiel's Visionary Temple within its historical contexts, incorporating insights from Babylonian sources. The aim of this session is to enhance our comprehension of Ezekiel's vision of the future temple as depicted in Ezekiel 40 - 48. (3) Imagery and Imagistic Language in the Book of Ezekiel - The Ancient Near Eastern Iconography Program Unit and the Book of Ezekiel Program Unit are pleased to sponsor a joint session focused on the theme of "imagery and imagistic language in the Book of Ezekiel." For this session we particularly encourage proposals that consider the relationship between the text of Ezekiel and the iconographic and imagistic contexts from which it emerged.

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Book of Isaiah

Christopher B. Hays
Shawn Zelig Aster
Description: The Book of Isaiah unit provides an international forum for discussion of issues related to the formation, growth and unity of the Isaiah scroll as well as questions of poetic imagery, intertextuality, history of interpretation and reader response criticism.

Call for papers: The Book of Isaiah unit provides an international forum for discussion of issues related to the formation, growth and unity of the Isaiah scroll as well as questions of poetic imagery, intertextuality, history of interpretation and reader response criticism.

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Book of Psalms

Brent A. Strawn
Description: It is the aim of the Book of Psalms unit to promote all aspects of and approaches to the study of the Psalms, with a major focus on the issue of how the Psalter as a collection has an integrity, history, and purpose of its own.

Call for papers: For 2024, the Book of Psalms unit will host several sessions. The first is devoted to Asian/Asian-American interpretation of the Psalms. The second will focus on the Elohistic Psalter. Proposals for these two sessions are most welcome. A final session is presently open and so proposals on any topic relating to the Psalms will be considered.

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Book of Samuel: Narrative, Theology, and Interpretation

Benjamin J.M. Johnson
Song-Mi Suzie Park
Description: Utilising critical and literary methods, this unit focuses on the literary and theological interpretation of the Book of Samuel. The consultation promotes the integration of multiple methodologies in interpretation, including dialogue between specialists in synchronic and diachronic approaches.

Call for papers: At the 2024 meeting the following sessions are planned: 1) A joint session co-sponsored with the Biblical Law section on the topic "Echoes of Torah in Samuel". Topics may include (but are not limited to) common law in the book of Samuel, allusions to the Torah in Samuel, legal concepts as reflected in Samuel compared to their reflection elsewhere in the Hebrew Bible, and developments in biblical law as reflected in Samuel's recensional history. 2) At least one open session on any aspect of the Book of Samuel. For these open sessions we welcome proposals on any aspect of the book of Samuel, especially papers which explore different methodologies in interpretation, the dialogue between synchronic and diachronic approaches, and theological concerns.

Tags: Former Prophets - 1-2 Samuel (Biblical Literature - Hebrew Bible/Old Testament/Greek OT (Septuagint))

Book of the Twelve Prophets

Nicholas R. Werse
Ruth Ebach
Description: The Book of the Twelve Prophets Section provides a forum for research into textual, literary, historical, religious, and ideological aspects of the Book of the Twelve Prophets. The section is interested in understanding individual passages as well as all phases of the development of this book.

Call for papers: The Book of the Twelve Prophets section will hold four sessions in 2024. 1. Open Session: We invite papers dealing with textual, literary, historical, religious, and ideological aspects of the Book of the Twelve Prophets. The section is interested in understanding individual passages as well as all phases of the development of this book/corpus. 2. Invited Session / Text workshop: The Book of Habakkuk. The session will focus on Hab 3 as part of the book and exploring the different historical and cultural contexts as well as the gender of this fascinating chapter. 3. Joint Session (Israelite Prophetic Literature): The Study of the Book of Hosea Present and Future: A Conversation Inspired by the Oxford Handbook of Hosea (Oxford University Press, 2024). 4. Joint Open Session (Meals in the HB/OT and Its World): Agrarian and Food-Focused Readings of the Book of the Twelve Prophets. Papers are welcome, please apply via the CfP of the Meals in the HB/OT group.

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Children in the Biblical World

John W. Martens
Kristine Garroway
Description: This section explores the child characters in the Bible, investigates the lives of children in the ancient world, and evaluates how biblical texts affect children in the post-biblical world. We invite traditional research in biblical studies, as well as interdisciplinary approaches to the topic.

Call for papers: This section explores the child characters in the Bible, investigates the lives of children in the ancient world, and evaluates how biblical texts affect children in the post-biblical world. We will host two sessions in 2024. For our open session we invite traditional research in biblical studies, as well as interdisciplinary approaches to the topic. Papers addressing children in the Hebrew Bible, New Testament, intertestamental literature, as well as rabbinic and related texts are welcome. For our themed session, we invite papers that explore children in media. Papers may be either on the representation or presentation of children in books, movies, TV, or Bibles. They may also address the influence of biblically themed media on children.

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Christian Apocrypha

Janet Elizabeth Spittler
Lily C. Vuong
Description: The Section fosters ongoing study of extra-canonical texts, as subjects of literary and philological investigation; as evidence for the history of religion, theology, and cult practice; and as documents of the socio-symbolic construction of Christianity along lines of class and gender.

Call for papers: At the 2024 Annual Meeting, the Christian Apocrypha program unit will hold two joint sessions: the first, with the newly formed John the Baptist program unit, will explore non-canonical traditions concerning the life and death of John the Baptist. The second joint session, with the Jewish Christianity program unit, will focus on questions of Judaism in and through “Apocryphal” literature. This session will continue the vibrant conversation from the previous year on topics relating broadly to "Pseudepigrapha," "Christian Apocrypha," and/or Jewish texts transmitted by Christians. Questions of representation of Jews and Judaism in Christian apocryphal texts, as well as representations of Christians in Jewish texts, are also welcomed. In addition, we welcome proposals on any topic directly related to apocryphal texts.

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Christian Theology and the Bible

Brent A. Strawn
Jennie Grillo
Description: This unit invites a conversation between the disciplines of Christian Theology and Biblical Studies. We are interested in questions, categories, or hypotheses drawn from the broad tradition of Christian theology which inform readings of the biblical texts, and we aim to foster constructive theological work with biblical texts.

Call for papers: This unit invites a conversation between the disciplines of Christian Theology and Biblical Studies. We are interested in questions, categories, or hypotheses drawn from the broad tradition of Christian theology which inform readings of the biblical texts, and we aim to foster constructive theological work with biblical texts. The unit often has one session devoted to a review of a recent book. Beyond that we invite papers for one or two open sessions on the general topics and intersection(s) of the Bible and Christian Theology.

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Chronicles-Ezra-Nehemiah

Aubrey E. Buster
Philip Yoo
Description: Our section provides a collegial forum for graduate students and scholars in which papers can be read, projects initiated, questions explored, new approaches attempted and broader discussions held relating to the research and scholarship of these biblical books.

Call for papers: For the 2024 Annual Meeting, the Chronicles-Ezra-Nehemiah (CEN) section will hold three sessions. 1) An invited book review panel on Mark Leuchter’s An Empire Far and Wide: The Achaemenid Dynastic Myth and Jewish Scribes in the Late Persian Period (Oxford University Press, 2024); 2) An invited panel on new and emerging trends in Chronicles scholarship; 3) An open session. For the open session, we welcome paper proposals on any topic relevant to the program unit, and we especially encourage early-career scholars to submit proposals to the open session.

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Cognitive Linguistics in Biblical Interpretation

Elizabeth Currier
Johan de Joode
Description: The field of cognitive science has reshaped longstanding philosophical assumptions about how people use and process language. This section applies cognitive linguistics to biblical studies, with a focus on the ways cognitive approaches help scholars understand and interact with ancient texts.

Call for papers: Cognitive Linguistics in Biblical Interpretation will hold two open sessions at the annual meeting in 2024. We invite papers that use one or more cognitive-linguistic methods to study a biblical text or corpus. We are especially interested in cognitive approaches that are underrepresented in biblical studies – for example: constructionist approaches to grammar, viewpoint analysis, applications of embodied cognition, prototype theory, force dynamics, conceptual blending, frame semantics, and conceptual metonymy. We welcome papers that use conceptual metaphor theory to explore a biblical text or corpus but will give priority to approaches that are under-utilized by biblical scholars. Strong papers go beyond thematic and methodological reflection and include exegetical and linguistic results.

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Cognitive Science Approaches to the Biblical World

Colleen Shantz
Daniel O. McClellan
Description: This program unit draws on scientific explanations of human thought and behavior to understand cognitive processes behind religious thought, experience, and practice, in order to explain religion in the biblical world and develop approaches integrating cultural and cognitive studies.

Call for papers: I. In our first session, “Confessions of a Cognitive Science Convert,” invited panelists will discuss how they came to use cognitive science in their scholarship and its utility for the study of biblical and cognate material. II. Our second session, co-sponsored with the Wisdom & Apocalypticism unit invites papers that explore apocalyptic concepts and images and how they are shaped by recurrent cognitive patterns of thought (e.g., prototypes, conceptual blending, counter-intuitive concepts). III. For a panel co-sponsored with the Senses & Cultures unit, “Making Sense with the Senses,” we invite papers that investigate the interplay between cognition and the senses in texts and in material culture. For example, how do the senses contribute to refinement of ideas, creation of new knowledge, or development of practices? We welcome attention to less-studied senses (e.g., sense of pain, sense of the body in space [proprioception], sense of time), and papers that apply a combination of cultural and cognitive theories. Please include a brief description of the data that will be examined, and the theories and methods that will be applied in the presentation. Non-traditional modes of presentation are welcome.

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Connecting John: Intertextualities, Contexts, Reception

Hugo Méndez
Stefano Salemi
Description: This consultation explores the Gospel of John's connections with other literary works, media, and artifacts, with all papers and panels setting John in dialogue with another object of study, ancient or modern—including, narratives, letters, apocalypses, apocryphal acts, ritual forms, and artistic representations. Its aim is to re-frame John as a watershed work in early Christian history—one that creatively synthesized earlier traditions, carved out new literary spaces, and ignited new directions in theology, literary practice, ritual, and art.

Call for papers: The “Connecting John” unit will convene three sessions at the 2024 SBL Annual Meeting, all of which have open calls: (1) The first session, co-sponsored by the “Pauline Theology” unit, will be a mixed invited/open call panel exploring connections between the Johannine Literature and Paul (inclusive of Pauline theology, the Pauline and Deutero-Pauline literature, the figure of Paul, and the social history of the “Pauline” communities). Although the Gospel of John is often identified with the same geography of Paul’s own journeys, little attention is given to the possible connections between the Johannine, Pauline, and Deutero-Pauline literatures. The “Connecting John” unit welcomes papers that will bring their literature into conversation and/or explore different ways of configuring the “Johannine" and “Pauline” worlds. (2) The second session, co-sponsored by the “Interrelations of the Gospels” group, will commemorate the centenary of B. H. Streeter’s The Four Gospels—a classic text exploring the relationship of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. The session invites proposals, submitted to the Interrelations group, on any aspect of Streeter’s magnum opus. (3) The final session will be a fully Open Call, welcoming presentations that set the Gospel of John in dialogue with another object of study, ancient or modern (e.g., Hebrew Bible and Second Temple Jewish literature, Greco-Roman contexts, ancient gospels, epistles, apocalypses, apocryphal acts, patristic writings, and art).

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Contextual Biblical Interpretation

Karri Whipple Alldredge
Laura Jean Torgerson
Description: The goal of this consultation is to explore the interest in developing a SBL seminar or section on *Contextual Biblical Interpretation,* its different strategies (including “inculturation,” inter(con)textualization, and reading with “ordinary” readers) and its methodological justifications, and the extent to which all interpretations are contextual.

Call for papers: We welcome papers that examine biblical texts or methodology while explicitly engaging a reader’s contemporary context. There are two open and two invited sessions. (1) We invite papers for an open session on contextual biblical interpretation. Papers should examine biblical texts from a reader’s contemporary context(s) or with communities they engage. We especially invite papers that examine context intersectionally. The relevant context and the presenter’s relationship to that context should be clearly defined.(2) The second session invites papers continuing our 2023 conversation on the global rise of religious nationalism. Papers should examine the use of the bible or biblical interpretations to promote religious nationalism or efforts to address nationalism in a particular context or community. We particularly invite papers that examine how artificial intelligence and online platforms are employed to promote religious nationalism, along with other relevant topics. (3) Alongside multiple AAR and SBL units, we will host an invited panel that considers the impact and influence of the work of the late queer performance theorist José Esteban Muñoz on the study of religion and sexuality, especially since 2024 is the 25th anniversary of the publication of Disidentifications. (4) We will co-host an invited panel that engages with Musa Dube and responds to her 2023 Presidential Address.

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Contextualizing North African Christianity

Alden Bass
Edwina Murphy
Description: This consultation encourages interdisciplinary study of North African Christianity within its broader social, cultural, and historical contexts (ca. 180-650 CE). The goal is to explore how North African Christians cultivated religious identities and practices as inhabitants of an evolving society in late antiquity.

Call for papers: This year, we have an open call for three sessions. The first is entitled "Biblical Economics in North Africa," focusing on issues related to poverty, wealth, health, and work in the Christian community. The second is entitled "Reception of the Disciples in North Africa." We seek papers about the ways stories of the Twelve and other disciples were interpreted and used in North African art, sermons, treatises, and other media. We also invite papers for our joint session with the Development of Early Christian Theology section which deal with the development of Christian doctrine and its connection to biblical exegesis and/or the rhetorical and polemical presentation of ideas by North African writers. Themes may include (but are not limited to) Trinitarian, pneumatological, ascetic, or Christological theology.

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Corpus Hellenisticum Novi Testamenti

Robert Matthew Calhoun
Clare K. Rothschild
Description: This consultation will 1) read and discuss ancient Greek materials that provide insight into the literary and religious worlds of early Christianity and 2) read and discuss papers that analyze early Christian texts in dialogue with Hellenistic materials.

Call for papers: For the 2024 annual meeting, the Corpus Hellenisticum Novi Testamenti program unit will convene three sessions: (1) a review panel on Teresa Morgan’s Trust in Atonement: God, Creation, and Reconciliation (2023); (2) co-hosted with Synoptic Gospels, a review panel on Simon Gathercole’s The Gospel and the Gospels: Christian Proclamation and Early Jesus Books (2022); and (3) an open session on the topic: Please Recycle! Ancient Intertextuality in the New Testament, Christian Apocrypha, and Beyond. We welcome proposals for the open session.

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Deuterocanonical and Cognate Literature

Barbara Schmitz
Frank Ueberschaer
Description: The unit provides a forum for the deuterocanonical writings. The goal is to foster academic research, stimulate discussions among scholars, and promote interest in these texts.

Call for papers: Women voices in the Deuterocanonical Literature – For the 2024 Annual Meeting, the DCL program unit will focus the topic of women and women’s voices in the Deuterocanonical literature. There will be a joint session of the Deuterocanonical and Cognate Literature and the Pseudepigrapha program units on the same topic in the Apocrypha/Deuterocanonical books and the Pseudepigrapha. We will approach this topic from multiple perspectives, including historical research on women in the ancient Mediterranean world and methods of research on the Deuterocanonical and Pseudepigraphic literature. Questions to consider might include: How are women perceived in this literature? What voices do they have, as characters or as possible authors? Can narrator biases be detected, and if so, which ones? What is the impact of previous research on perceptions of women in this literature? Papers on other topics are also welcome.

Tags: 1 Esdras (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), 1 Maccabees (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), 2 Esdras (4 Ezra) (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), 2 Maccabees (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), 3 Maccabees (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), 4 Maccabees (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), Additions to the Book of Esther (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), Baruch (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), Deuterocanonical Works (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), Ecclesiasticus (Sirach) (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), Judith (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), Letter of Jeremiah (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), Prayer of Manasseh (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), Psalm 151 (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), The Additions to the Book of Daniel (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), The Additions to the Book of Daniel - Bel and the Dragon (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), The Additions to the Book of Daniel - Prayer of Azariah and Song of the Three Young Men (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), The Additions to the Book of Daniel - Susanna (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), Tobit (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works), Wisdom and Philosophical Literature (Early Jewish Literature - Jewish Pseudepigrapha), Wisdom of Solomon (Biblical Literature - Deuterocanonical Works)

Deuteronomistic History

Jeremy Hutton
Sonja Ammann
Description: This unit is a forum for scholarship pertaining to the books of Deuteronomy and the Former Prophets (Joshua–Kings). Papers may treat material in one or more of these books or in the collection as a whole. Relevant foci include literary history and compositional techniques; theological trends exemplified in the texts; the social and historical milieu or milieus in which they were produced; as well as connections among one or more of these books, whether topical, chronological, or linguistic.

Call for papers: The Deuteronomistic History section invites abstracts for papers pertaining to the books of Deuteronomy and the Former Prophets (Joshua–Kings). Papers may treat material in one or more of these books or in the collection as a whole. Relevant foci include literary history and compositional techniques; theological trends exemplified in the texts; the social and historical milieu or milieus in which they were produced; as well as connections among one or more of these books, whether topical, chronological, or linguistic. One of our open sessions will be focused on 2 Kings 25 and the downfall of Judah. We will be co-sponsoring a section along with the PERSIAS Research Group and the Literature and History of the Persian Period section entitled, "Presences and Absences of Persia in the Deuteronomistic History." Please submit abstracts through the Deuteronomistic History group.

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Development of Early Christian Theology

H. Clifton Ward
David G. Hunter
Description: This unit explores the close connections among the construction of the Christian scriptures, early Christian practices of biblical interpretation, and the theological and ecclesiastical debates that occurred from the apostolic period through the seventh century.

Call for papers: In 2024, we are sponsoring three sessions, including two co-sponsored panels: 1. This panel, organized by the joint efforts of the Inventing Christianity and Development of Early Christian Theology Sections, invites papers on the theme of “Beyond Orthodoxy/Heresy,” with a focus on the second and third centuries. For this session, we welcome papers that propose alternative paradigms for reconstructing early Christian culture and theology, and which trouble, nuance, or reconsider the models of “orthodoxy”, “heresy,” and the orthodoxy/heresy binary. Papers are especially welcome that consider the role of textual practices and interpretation (e.g., competing claims about biblical interpretation, the nature of revelation, reading practices, emerging concepts of “canon”) or specific biblical episodes that served as intensive sites in the defining of early Christian culture and theology. 2. “Reflecting our unit’s commitment to exploring the interplay between the formation of the Christian scriptures, early Christian practices of scriptural interpretation, and their role in the articulation of Christian doctrine from the apostolic period through the end of late antiquity, we are seeking proposals for papers dealing with the historical development of Christian doctrine and its inextricable connection to biblical exegesis. The unit is also committed to exploration of how early Christian authors presented their ideas, rhetorically, and polemically, and how, in so doing, they participated in the broader Greco-Roman intellectual world. We welcome proposals dealing with themes such as (but not limited to) Trinitarian, pneumatological, ascetic, or Christological theology. In addition to this open call, we especially encourage proposals dealing with these themes in early Christian authors from North Africa for one co-sponsored panel with the Contextualizing North African Christianity Section.

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Digital Humanities in Biblical, Early Jewish, and Christian Studies

Jennifer Quigley
Dr. Paul Dilley
Description: This consultation explores the ongoing transformation of biblical studies, and early Jewish and Christian studies, within digital culture. Initiated in the 1940s, the "Digital Humanities" is now shaping all Humanities disciplines. Sessions will focus on its impact on manuscripts and editions; reading and exegesis; publishing and access; and innovative research methodologies more generally.

Call for papers: This consultation explores the ongoing transformation of biblical studies, and early Jewish and Christian studies, within digital culture. Initiated in the 1940s, the "Digital Humanities" is now shaping all Humanities disciplines. Sessions will focus on its impact on manuscripts and editions; reading and exegesis; publishing and access; and innovative research methodologies more generally.

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Disputed Paulines

Jerry L. Sumney
Lisa Marie Belz
Description: The Disputed Paulines Consultation seeks to explore historical, literary (including rhetorical), and theological matters which bear upon the interpretation of the letters of the Pauline Corpus that many argue are not genuinely or immediately authored by Paul. It is hoped that careful study of these letters will help us better understand both these documents and early Christianity more broadly.

Call for papers: Depending on the number and quality of proposals received, the Disputed Paulines Section will offer one or more open sessions for which we invite papers exploring historical, literary (including rhetorical), and theological matters that bear upon the interpretation of one or more of those letters (or a discreet section thereof).

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Early Christianity and the Ancient Economy

Agnes Choi
Description: The Early Christianity and the Ancient Economy Consultation is the foundational component of an international, interdisciplinary project that seeks to delineate the relationship between early Christianity and the ancient economy in the period from Jesus to Justinian, demonstrating both similarities and differences in attitudes, approaches to problems, and attempted solutions.

Call for papers: The Early Christianity and Ancient Economy program examines economic aspects of early Christian groups from the first to the fifth century CE within the context of the economies of the Roman Empire and its provinces. We invite papers exploring the ancient economy, understood broadly to consist of the production, transmission, and consumption of goods and services, as well as the social, political, and ideological conditions associated with economic systems. We particularly welcome papers on: (A) issues of inequality from various angles, including urbanization as a driver of inequality and inequality in relation to geographic and social mobility (e.g. immigration and incorporation into neighborhoods), especially in conversation with the work of Thomas Piketty; and (B) any aspect of inequality in urban and/or rural environments, chronologically from the seventh century BCE to the fifth century CE, and geographically from northern Africa to western Asia and southern Europe, as well as papers addressing aspects of economic inequality in the 2024 Annual Meeting’s host city, San Diego. [Session B is co-organized with Poverty in the Biblical World.] If applicable, proposals should indicate in the abstract for which topic (A or B) the paper should be considered.

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Early Jewish Christian Relations

Krista N. Dalton
David Maldonado Rivera
Description: The Early Jewish Christian Relations Group deals with the relationships of Christians and Jews as Christians emerged as groups distinct from Jews, and how these groups continued to affect one another in the following centuries. It considers approximately the first four centuries.

Call for papers: The Early Jewish Christian Relations invites papers for the 2024 Annual Meetings. The program unit seeks all submissions related to Jews and Christians in the ancient world. We are especially interested in papers discussing materiality and archaeology, biblical reception, and geographic regions of religious significance. The unit will also feature a review panel dedicated to J. Christopher Edwards's book, Crucified: The Christian Invention of the Jewish Executioners of Jesus (2023) and cosponsor a review panel of R. Rafe Neis's book When a Human Gives Birth to a Raven: Rabbis and the Reproduction of Species (2023).

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Ecological Hermeneutics

Barbara Rossing
Peter Trudinger
Description: This Section will focus on hermeneutical principles and models for ecological readings of the biblical text and tradition. Attention would be paid to the anthropocentric bias of texts and readers as well as to discerning alternative traditions sympathetic to ecology, Earth and the Earth community. The aim is to explore the art of reading the text with empathy for the natural world.

Call for papers: This year, the unit will focus on two topics.

1. The question of agency: What might the notion of “agency” (or “actancy”) mean for the different members of creation: humans, animals, insects, non-sentient beings, etc.? To what extent can non-sentient entities have agency (e.g., Psalm 148:8-10)? Proposals are invited on the topic of agency/actancy. In addition, there will also be a joint session with The Bible and Animal Studies unit, comprising a review of Dong Hyeon Jeong’s book, Embracing the Nonhuman in the Gospel of Mark, and proposals that engage with the themes of this book are also invited.

2. Ecological hope: The present is an uncertain space, with visions of the future seemingly bounded by extremes of dystopian despair in the face of inevitable ecological disaster (c.f., Lam 5:19-22) versus gratuitous hope that some super-natural miracle may intervene. We seek proposals that open up imaginations of biblical communities, drawing on specific texts and imagery from the Hebrew Bible or New Testament as well as Patristic texts and iconography/art. Proposals are invited that explore interpretations of eco-biblical passages that create a realistic hope (and what might constitute this!). How do biblical authors shape a vision of hope for ecological renewal and healing?

3. There is also an open call for papers on any biblical text or theme related to the unit description.

All proposals are encouraged to have a robust methodological basis.

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Economics in the Biblical World

Davis Hankins
Lisbeth S. Fried
Description: This program unit explores economics in the biblical world from a variety of approaches, including textual analysis, archaeological study, economic history, and much-needed theoretical engagement. We examine both larger economic structures and more local patterns (i.e., household and village).

Call for papers: This program unit explores economics in the biblical world from a variety of approaches, including textual analysis, archaeological study, economic history, and much-needed theoretical engagement. We examine both larger economic structures and more local patterns (i.e., household and village).

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Egyptology and Ancient Israel

Shirly Ben-Dor Evian
Description: The principal goal of the Egyptology and Ancient Israel Section is to promote collaboration between biblical scholars and Egyptologists in their comparative examination and analysis of historical and literary connections between ancient Israel, the Hebrew Bible, and the history and literature of ancient Egypt. Where appropriate, the section joins with other related program units to foster interdisciplinary conversation across the wider ancient Near East.

Call for papers: The Egyptology and Ancient Israel section will hold TWO session in the coming SBL 2024. The first session: Environmental studies on the Egypt-Levant Interface. Description: Many of the biblical accounts pertaining to the interrelations between Egypt and the Levant include environmental elements that are either pertinent to the narrative or provide it with background. The aim of this session is to promote the dialogue between biblical scholars and researchers from the exact and natural sciences that deal with the ancient environment, ecology, fauna and flora from Egypt and the Levant. Papers should deal with environmental aspects of the interaction between Egypt and the Levant or their manifestations in the biblical texts. The second session: Elephantine in Context. Description: The Literature and History of the Persian Period section together with the Egyptology and Ancient Israel section will host a special session to promote the dialogue between the study of the Elephantine archive and the history and archaeology of Ancient Egypt in the Persian Period. We invite papers that will contextualize the Elephantine Aramaic ostraca and papyri within the realm of current archaeological field work in Egypt and the study of Late Period contemporanous Egyptian texts. The session will include both invited speakers and refereed papers.

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Ethiopic Bible and Literature

Curt Niccum
Description: This unit studies the sacred texts and literature of the ancient and rich Ethiopic tradition. It seeks, through critical study, to understand the ideology, sociology and the process of literary formation, of the Ethiopic tradition, in particular the Bible, and also discusses its manuscript tradition.

Call for papers: We plan two sessions. One session will broadly encompass ideology, sociology, and literary formation in Ge'ez literature. This tradition bears many marks of originality, for Ethiopian and Eritrean theologians and community leaders developed their own sense of identity and expressed these in their form of the biblical text and in various works of literature, as also external influence, from Christian, Jewish, and Muslim traditions. Proposals on any aspect are welcomed. The other session will explore online texts, tools, and treasuries of Ethiopian and Eritrean religious heritage, whether fully developed or in development. Over the last few decades in Africa, Europe, and North America significant advances towards digital access have been and are being made. Papers announcing, addressing, or analyzing these sites or the future of digital studies and Ethiopian and Eritrean material culture are welcome.

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Ethnic Chinese Biblical Colloquium

Kevin Chau
Description: The Ethnic Chinese Biblical Colloquium (ECBC) emerged with the rise of the awareness of contextualization and cross-cultural awareness in biblical interpretation. A group of scholars who are of ethnic Chinese origin created ECBC as a forum to address issues relevant to this concern within SBL in the 1990s. Prominent founding members of this group are Dr. Seow Choon-Leong, Dr. Wan Sze-Kar, Dr. Gale Yee, Dr. Mary Foskett, Dr. Jeffrey Kuan, and Dr. John Yieh. The group invites scholars to participate in the forum held annually within the SBL Annual Meeting.

Call for papers:

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Exile (Forced Migrations) in Biblical Literature

Eric M. Trinka
Mark Wade Hamilton
Description: This section examines exile, displacement, and migration (forced or involuntary) in biblical literature—its history, associated literature, and conceptualization from a wide range of methodological perspectives.

Call for papers: The SBL section on Exile/Forced Migration invites papers for sessions focusing on several areas: (1) Intertextuality and the Hebrew Bible, attending to the theme of “Leaving Home, Returning Home, or Making Home: Reading Genesis Intertextually”; (2) “Intersectional Identity-Making for Migrating Communities,” addressing how factors such as gender, age, class, or language (among other identity markers) operate in new spaces to build individual or group identity; and (3) a general section for papers on any aspect of migration and return in periods relevant to the study of the Bible.

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Feminist Hermeneutics of the Bible

Midori E. Hartman
Sharon Jacob
Description: The aim of this unit is to provide a forum for research in issues and questions relating to feminist methods of interpretation. While specifically focused on methodological concerns, we are also concerned to ground that reflection in the reality of engagement with specific texts.

Call for papers: The Feminist Hermeneutics of the Bible (FHB) program unit will offer and/or co-sponsor the following four sessions at the 2024 annual meeting.

Session 1: Open Call for Papers: The Feminist Hermeneutics of the Bible program unit issues an open call for papers. Papers that use feminist, womanist, Latina/x and/or other cognate ideological frames to read biblical texts are encouraged. Special consideration will be given to papers that apply these hermeneutics to their reading and interpretation of the Bible.

Session 2: Galatians 3:28 in Feminist and Womanist Perspectives: The Feminist Hermeneutics of the Bible and the Paul and Politics program units present Galatians 3:28 in Feminist and Womanist Perspectives. This invited panel of feminist and womanist scholars will enhance our understanding of this critical text by bringing to bear intersectional approaches that engage gender, race and sexuality.

Session 3: Masculinity Studies in Biblical Scholarship: Feminist, Womanist, and Queer Assessments: The Feminist Hermeneutics of the Bible and the LGBTI/Queer Hermeneutics program units present Masculinity Studies in Biblical Scholarship: Feminist, Womanist, and Queer Assessments. This invited panel will focus upon current trends in masculinity studies in the field of biblical studies with special attention to what feminist, womanist, and queer interpretations bring to the topic.

Session 4: Latino/a/e and Latin American Biblical Interpretation: José Esteban Muñoz The Feminist Hermeneutics of the Bible program unit is co-sponsoring the Latino/a/e and Latin American Biblical Interpretation's invited panel on the impact and influence of the work of the late queer performance theorist José Esteban Muñoz on the study of religion and sexuality.



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Gender, Sexuality, and the Bible

Jennifer L. Koosed
Katy E. Valentine
Description: This group engages in critical discussion with research on sexuality and gender in disciplines such as critical theory, philosophy, literature, cultural studies and the social sciences. It explores the implications of this research for biblical and postbiblical studies.

Call for papers: FIRST SESSION: An open session focused around non-binary (“enbee” or “NB”) gender identities. We invite papers that explore non-binary identities of/in ancient texts, of interpreters, in reception history, as part of the identity of the scholar, and more. We encourage presenters to take an intersectional approach to gender and sexuality. In a commitment to interrogate the overwhelming whiteness of scholars, we particularly welcome contributions with Queer of Color emphases. SECOND SESSION: An invited panel to review Jennifer Bird’s book Marriage in the Bible (Rowman & Littlefield). THIRD SESSION: A joint session with Senses and Cultures exploring gender, sexuality, and the senses. While gender, sexuality, and the senses have been explored separately, we are excited about the potential overlap between the two, as seen in the research of Constance Classen, Anne Létourneau, and Uroš Matic. Papers can address any aspect of gender and/or sexuality and the senses in the Bible. We are particularly interested in the intersections of the fields with masculinity studies, the deconstruction of whiteness, or the less studied senses, such as taste, smell, touch, kinaesthesia (the sense of movement), and proprioception (the sense of the body in space). Proposals are encouraged to contain an explicit reflection on methodology, the scope of the data that will be examined, and the theories and methods that will be applied in the presentation.

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Genesis

Theodore Hiebert
Megan Warner
Description: The Genesis unit promotes sustained and continued dialogue and scholarship on the book of Genesis from a variety of methodological perspectives, especially (yet not limited to) those approaching and treating the text as a canonical whole. It creates space for those working on Genesis to share their work in a focused place.

Call for papers: Session 1: Genesis as an Origin Story. The Book of Genesis is the Bible’s origin story, and yet we don’t give this enough focused attention, so we’d like to make this the topic of this session in San Diego. We’ve asked participants to consider the following questions: 1) For whom is Genesis an origin story? 2) How does Genesis as an origin story construct their identity? 3) Why does it matter to them? And, 4) how does your own place in the world and in the academy influence your answer? We have invited four participants from different contexts to address these questions. Each person will have 20-30 minutes to speak, and then we will set aside the last 30 minutes of the session for questions and discussion. Session 2: Genesis and Geography. This is an open session. We invite papers on the geography of Genesis and on topics for which the geography of Genesis plays a significant role. Session 3: Open. We invite papers on any topic in Genesis studies. Session 4: This will be a Joint Session with the Intertextuality in the Hebrew Bible group.

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Gospel of Luke

Kylie Crabbe
Description: The Gospel of Luke garners continued interest because of its distinctive narrative construction and its rhetorical, theological, and ethical emphases. The unit is interested in exploring Luke’s literary features and theology, and in encouraging new research on the gospel.

Call for papers: The Gospel of Luke Program Unit invites submissions for an open session covering any aspect of research related to the Gospel of Luke, including (e.g.) exegetical, historical, narratological, postcolonial, reception-historical, social-scientific, textual, and theological approaches. Proposals for papers that engage in reading Luke with new, minoritized, or multiperspectival approaches are especially welcome. The section will also host two additional sessions composed of invited papers and open discussion. The first invited panel focuses on Purity in the Gospel of Luke. The second, co-hosted with the Acts of the Apostles Program Unit, focuses on Disability and Impairment in Luke and Acts. Contributors to the open session are also welcome to address these themes in their proposals.

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Gospel of Mark

Kara J. Lyons-Pardue
Robert S. Snow
Description: The Gospel of Mark Section is a venue for research on the text and themes of the Gospel of Mark and its various contexts.

Call for papers: The Gospel of Mark program unit plans for three sessions for 2024. The first session extends an open call for papers focused specifically on interpretations of Mark 1:16-45 as a textual unit, which continues a multi-year series working through Mark from beginning to end, with a view to fostering conversation about the textual, historical, hermeneutical, and theological aspects of the Gospel in larger-scale perspective. The second session extends an open call for papers examining the topic “Mark within Judaism.” Papers should interrogate Mark’s relationship to various elements of early Jewish culture, such as contemporary halakhic debates, scriptural interpretation, ritual purity, dietary practices, priesthood, temple, land, etc., as well as those that address methodological issues about what it means to read Mark “within Judaism.” The third session extends an open call for papers on any topic or text advancing scholarship on the Gospel of Mark. Proposals for all three sessions should show a clearly defined thesis, methodology and argument.

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Greco-Roman Religions

Barbette Stanley Spaeth
Maria Doerfler
Description: This unit is highly interdisciplinary and comparative, a forum regularly bringing together historians of religion, specialists in Christian origins, classicists, archaeologists, and social scientists from across the world to pursue questions that foster new cooperative research initiatives.

Call for papers: We are planning four sessions; please indicate the number of the session for which you are submitting. 1: "Movement in and beyond the Ancient Mediterranean: Migrants, Tourists, Pilgrims, Travelers." Recently, scholarly attention has increasingly turned to different modes of movement in premodernity and the effects that movement had on the social, cultural, and religious life of persons and peoples. This session explores how the movement of individuals and people groups, whether forced (e.g., through exile, displacement, or natural disaster) or voluntary (e.g., in pilgrimage, travel, or through imperial expansion), transformed religion within and beyond the ancient Mediterranean. 2: "Goddess Worship in Greco-Roman Antiquity." Ancient Greek and Roman worship of goddesses was commonplace and highly variegated. This panel explores three themes related to this phenomenon: the viability of “Goddess worship” as a scholarly category, regional and chronological variations in these cults, and Greco-Roman goddess worship in relationship with other religions, including Judaism, Christianity, and neopaganism. 3: "New Work in Greco-Roman Religions." We invite papers dealing with any aspect of Greek or Roman religion, including their interactions with Judaism, Christianity, and modern paganism. 4: "Reaching Far and Wide: Elite Values and Wider Social Interactions in Religious Settings across the Ancient Mediterranean" (with the Society for Ancient Mediterranean Religions). While elite influences have shaped both ancient religions and the surviving evidence for them, religious events were also often opportunities during which individuals could encounter others beyond their familiar contexts. This panel invites papers discussing such interactions, including those concerning less mainstream religious ideas and actions.

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Healthcare and Disability in the Ancient World

Chris de Wet
Isaac Soon
Description: This unit, titled Disability Studies and Healthcare in the Bible and the Ancient World, seeks to foster scholarship related to disability, illness, medicine, and healthcare in the biblical world and text. Major areas of interest include: the religious, legal, and cultural status of persons with disabilities or illness in the biblical and formative Jewish and Christian periods; the representation of disability and illness in biblical and cognate texts; the theology of such texts; the history and archeology of medicine and healthcare in the ancient Near East and Greco-Roman worlds; and the subjects of disability, illness, medicine and healthcare in the history of biblical interpretation.

Call for papers: The unit plans to have five sessions at the 2024 meeting. Two thematic sessions and an open call for papers, and two co-sponsored book review panels:

1) At least one open session welcoming paper proposals on any aspect of health and disability related to the Bible.

2) A session which invites papers aspects related to old age, aging, gerontology and ancient geriatrics, including papers that engage with critical-theoretical approaches and methodologies related to old age in antiquity.

3) A thematic panel will focus on pragmatic texts and practical approaches in the area of healing, healthcare and related subjects (e.g. magic, astro-medicine, divination, dream interpretation). So, contributions may deal with recipe collections, handbooks or compendia (euporista, vade mecum etc.) proper or with the integration of respective knowledge into other, not necessarily medical works such as biblical, rabbinic, early Christian, Manichean, Irano-Persian, Islamic traditions or other texts (e.g. marginalia, miscellaneous manuscripts). Papers can explore their materiality, discursive strategies (recipes, lists, practical advice, narratives), authors and audiences (“users”?), purposes and socio-political or cultural backgrounds.

4) An invited book review panel (co-sponsored with the Religious Competition in Late Antiquity Unit) will engage Megan Nutzman’s Contested Cures: Identity and Ritual Healing in Roman and Late Antique Palestine (Edinburgh University Press 2022). The book argues for religious intersection and cross-fertilization in the realm of ritual healing, and asks about what this meant for the communal identity of Jews, Samaritans, Christians, Greeks and Romans in late antique Palestine.

5) A co-sponsored session reviewing Isaac T. Soon, A Disabled Apostle: Impairment and Disability in the Letters of Paul (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2023).

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Hebrew Bible, History, and Archaeology

Kerry Sonia
Kristine Garroway
Description: This program unit exists to foster discussion of the relationship between archaeology in all its aspects (including survey, excavation, and epigraphic data) and the history of the ancient Israelite kingdoms and/or the Hebrew Bible.

Call for papers: The Hebrew Bible, History, and Archaeology unit is hosting two sessions for the 2024 meeting and co-sponsoring a third session with the Historiography and the Hebrew Bible program unit. First, we are hosting a book review panel, focused on the edited volume From Nomadism to Monarchy?: Revisiting the Early Iron Age Southern Levant (Eisenbrauns, 2023), which will include the editors and four invited panelists. Second, we invite papers for an open session. We welcome any paper proposal that fosters discussion about the relationship between archaeology in all its aspects (including survey, excavation, and epigraphic data) and the history of the ancient Israelite kingdoms and/or the Hebrew Bible. We strongly encourage graduate students and junior faculty to submit abstracts for this session. Finally, we are co-sponsoring a book review session on Omer Sergi's book, The Two Houses of Israel: State Formation and the Origins of Pan-Israelite Identity (SBL Press, 2023).

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Hebrew Scriptures and Cognate Literature

Alice Mandell
Eric Harvey
Description: The Hebrew Scriptures and Cognate Literature Section provides a major forum for research on specific points of contact between the Bible and the literatures of Israel's neighbors, to better elucidate the Bible as a collection of ancient Israelite writings.

Call for papers: This year we invite papers to two sessions: 1. An open session to all papers related to the theme "Hebrew Scriptures and Cognate Literature" 2. In San Diego, the Assyriology and the Bible Section will host an open, joint session on “Methodology and Cognate Comparanda” in the study of the Hebrew Bible, Assyriology, and the wider ancient Near East, together with the Hebrew Bible and Cognate Literature section. Proposals on scholarship that bridges across these research areas, or discusses tools and methods to incorporate their different types of evidence, both textual and material, are welcome.

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Hebrews

Eric F. Mason
Madison N. Pierce
Description: The famous and almost proverbial saying that Hebrews appears to its viewer as a “melchisedekitisches Wesen ohne Stammbaum” was uttered by Franz Overbeck in the year 1880, during the high noon of historicism. The missing genealogy that Overbeck lamented meant peculiarly to him a lack of historical context. This perceived “lack” was the consequence of flawed presuppositions originating in ideological frameworks, and consequently led New Testament scholarship to view Hebrews as the “enigmatic,” the “other” one, and furthermore led to the neglect of its historical context by Hebrews scholarship. Consequently, the context was judged as “irrelevant” for Hebrews interpretation. Recent scholarship on the contrary has developed a particular interest in Hebrews’ context. Therefore, while maintaining the distinctiveness of Hebrews it is the aim of this Group to explore extensively and facilitate scholarly research on Hebrews’ relations to other early traditions and texts (Jewish, Hellenistic and Roman), so that Hebrews’ historical, cultural, and religious identity may be mapped in greater detail.

Call for papers: In 2024, the Hebrews Program Unit will have two open sessions: (1) an open session with papers exploring the intersections between Hebrews and other early Christian traditions; and (2) an open session with papers exploring any topic related to the study of Hebrews.

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Hellenistic Judaism

René Bloch
Professor Sarah Pearce
Description: This section is devoted to the history of (a) Judaism of the Hellenistic period (that is, "Hellenistic" understood chronologically from Alexander the Great to Augustus), (b) Greek-speaking Judaism in antiquity (that is, "Hellenistic" understood linguistically), and (c) the interaction between Judaism and its host cultures in antiquity ("Hellenistic understood culturally and socially).

Call for papers: The Hellenistic Judaism Unit is organizing three sessions at the San Diego meeting. Paper proposals are accepted for two sessions. 1) The first is a session dedicated to “Ancient Antisemitism.” At a time when antisemitism is on the rise in many parts of the world, the Hellenistic Judaism section invites proposals on all aspects of antisemitism in the Greco-Roman world including literary animosity against Jews, political actions (such as expulsions from Rome or the anti-Jewish riot in Alexandria in 38 CE), and theological polemics in early Christianity. We are also interested in methodological questions on terminology and in papers on the history of research on ancient antisemitism. 2) The second is an open session: we invite submissions on any topic in the field of Hellenistic Judaism. Paper proposers are asked to indicate for which of the two sessions their papers are intended, i.e. Antisemitism in Antiquity or Open Session. 3) Invited book review panel on a Critical Edition of the Hebrew Manuscripts of Ben Sira: Translation and Philological Notes, ed. J.-S. Frédérique Michèle Rey, Eric D. Reymond (Brill, 2024).

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Historical Geography of the Biblical World

Chris McKinny
David Moster
Description: This unit provides a platform for scholars to present original research related to the historical geography of the biblical world. While we anticipate many studies related to both the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament and the New Testament, we welcome studies of related regions and texts as well.

Call for papers: This unit provides a platform for scholars to present original research related to the historical geography of the biblical world. While we anticipate many studies related to both the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament and the New Testament, we welcome studies of related regions and texts as well.

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Historical Jesus

Hilde Brekke Moller
Tucker Ferda
Description: Historical Jesus research is one of the oldest and most debated areas in Biblical Studies. We encourage critical analyses of historical methods, recent trends and contemporary reception, and we give scholars and students opportunities to present their latest Jesus research.

Call for papers: The Historical Jesus program unit organizes three sessions for the 2024 meeting. One of them will be an open session, for which we invite papers. Two sessions are themed and will have invited speakers. One of those also invites proposals. 1) Open session. We welcome proposals on topics related to the historical Jesus 2) Invited panel/CFP: Significant Contributions to the Quest for Jesus. We welcome papers that engage with significant contributions to the scholarship on the historical Jesus. 3) Invited panel: The Past, Present, and Future of the Seditious Jesus Hypothesis: Engaging Fernando Bermejo-Rubio’s They Suffered Under Pontius Pilate: Jewish Anti-Roman Resistance and the Crosses at Golgotha.

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Historiography and the Hebrew Bible

Lauren A. S. Monroe
Mahri Leonard-Fleckman
Description: This unit (formerly Current Historiography and Ancient Israel and Judah) explores how historians use the Hebrew Bible for purposes of historical research and writing.

Call for papers: The Historiography and the Hebrew Bible program unit invites paper proposals that examine specific historical questions or topics that pertain to the texts of the Hebrew Bible. Papers that engage contemporary debates surrounding the theories and methods of history writing are particularly welcome. In addition to one or more open session(s), we will be cohosting a special session on "Pentateuch and Pedagogy" with the Pentateuch program unit. This session will feature invited papers that reflect on the historical and historiographic challenges of teaching Pentateuch. We will also co-host a session of invited papers with the Hebrew Bible, History, and Archaeology unit on Omer Sergi's 2023 book, "The Two Houses of Israel: State Formation in Israel and Judah and the Origins of Pan-Israelite Identity" (SBL). The goal of this book panel will be to use Sergi's book as a point of departure for a provocative and stimulating discussion of present research and future directions in the fields of Bible and Archaeology, especially in relation to historiographic practices.

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History and Literature of Early Rabbinic Judaism

Krista N. Dalton
Simcha Gross
Description: This section is devoted to both historical and literary study of the Rabbis of Late Antiquity (ca. 70 CE - 640 CE). We encourage studies that are interdisciplinary and comparative, and that take into account the wider social and cultural environments in which the Rabbis worked.

Call for papers: The History and Literature of Early Rabbinic Judaism invites papers for the 2024 Annual Meetings. The program unit seeks submissions related to ancient Jews and their neighbors that explores textual, material, and theoretical intersections with rabbinic literature. In addition to an open call for papers, the program will organize two thematic panels: 1) a session on the reception of Jesus in the Jewish First Millennium and 2) a session on midrash and hermeneutics.

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Homiletics and Biblical Studies

Dr. Karoline M. Lewis
Description: The Homiletics and Biblical Studies Section encourages dialogue among scholars in both fields who share an interest in critical exegesis, its various methods, and the unique hermeneutical and theological problems inherent to the relationship between biblical interpretation and proclamation.

Call for papers: The Homiletics and Biblical Studies Section invites papers in our open call session for the 2024 Annual Meeting. The papers can address any topic related to the intersection between homiletics and biblical studies. The Homiletics and Biblical Studies Section encourages dialogue among scholars in both fields who share an interest in critical exegesis, its various methods, and the unique hermeneutical and theological problems inherent to the relationship between biblical interpretation and proclamation.

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Institute for Biblical Research

Jerry Hwang
Jennifer Brown Jones
Description: The historical goals of the Institute for Biblical Research include fostering the study of Scripture within an evangelical context, establishing facilities for the furtherance of biblical studies, and encouraging university and college students toward a vocation of biblical scholarship. Website: www.ibr-bbr.org

Call for papers: Some of our research groups are issuing a call for papers. Others have invited presenters. Note that all paper proposals for IBR and the Kirby Laing Centre Scripture Collective sessions must be submitted directly to the sponsor(s) of the relevant session, not through the SBL system. See https://www.ibr-bbr.org/research-groups for details on each group.

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International Organization for Septuagint and Cognate Studies

Reinhart Ceulemans
Description: The IOSCS is an Affiliate of the SBL. For further information on the IOSCS, please contact the program unit chair.

Call for papers: The International Organization for Septuagint and Cognate Studies (IOSCS) is soliciting papers for its annual meeting in San Diego, to be held in conjunction with SBL. We invite proposals for twenty-minute papers on any aspect of the LXX and cognate literature. One of the sessions will be devoted to the language of LXX within its historical-linguistic context and to the place of LXX in the study of Postclassical Greek (chair Marieke Dhont of the new 'Septuagint within the History of Greek Network'). Proposals of max. 350 words for that session or on any other relevant topic are welcome and should be submitted through the SBL Annual Meetings website. All presenters and panelists must be members in good standing order of IOSCS (see http://ioscs.org/ for details). Please direct any queries to Reinhart Ceulemans at reinhart.ceulemans@kuleuven.be.

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International Qur’anic Studies Association (IQSA)

Andrew J. O'Connor
Description: The International Qur’anic Studies Association fosters scholarship on the Qur’an, its context, its relationship to other scriptural traditions, and its influence upon literature and culture. IQSA facilitates the broad and open discussion of the Qur’an from a variety of academic perspectives.

Call for papers: For the 2024 meeting in San Diego, IQSA will be accepting papers that address any aspect of the Qur’anic text. These may explore particular themes in a given surah or aspects of the Qur’an’s conversation with the religious traditions of Late Antiquity, or even discuss methodological concerns when studying the text or highlight features of physical manuscripts. All topics are welcome."

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International Syriac Language Project

Richard A. Taylor
Description: All papers are presented as contributions to the International Syriac Language Project (ISLP), the aim of which is to redefine ancient-language lexicography for the 21st century, and to lay the foundations for a new comprehensive Syriac-English lexicon. The group and its invited contributors is interdisciplinary and collaborative, and therefore includes specialists in related fields.

Call for papers: All papers are presented as contributions to the International Syriac Language Project (ISLP), the aim of which is to redefine ancient-language lexicography for the 21st century, and to lay the foundations for a new comprehensive Syriac-English lexicon. The group and its invited contributors is interdisciplinary and collaborative, and therefore includes specialists in related fields.

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Interrelations of the Gospels

James W. Barker
Olegs Andrejevs
Description: This section focuses on the production and reception of early Christian Gospels, particularly the ways subsequent authors redacted and rewrote previous Gospels in whole or in part. Perennial inquiries include the Synoptic problem and John's relation to the Synoptics, but additional texts-both extant and hypothetical-are also evaluated. The unit fosters an open forum that does not privilege or exclude any methodologically rigorous source-critical hypothesis.

Call for papers: For the 2024 meeting in San Diego, the Interrelations of the Gospels section will convene three panels. One is an open-call session commemorating the centenary of B. H. Streeter's The Four Gospels; this will be a joint session with the 'Connecting John' consultation, but please submit Streeter proposals only to the Interrelations group. Second is an invited panel on the topic of editorial fatigue. Third is an open-call for papers discussing any aspect of the interrelations of the Gospels.

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Intertextuality and the Hebrew Bible

Susanne Gillmayr-Bucher
Soo Kim Sweeney
Description: The purpose of this unit is to provide a forum for presentation and discussion on the study of intertextuality in the Hebrew Bible. This unit explores various issues related to methodology as well as interpretation, considering not only the Hebrew Bible but also its connection to ancient Near Eastern literature, Second Temple texts, the New Testament, interreligious sources, art, and film.

Call for papers: Intertextuality and the Hebrew Bible will host four sessions in 2024. The first session will be a joint session with the "Exile (Forced Migration) Unit, focusing on intertextual engagement between reading the Book of Genesis and various exilic forms, return, or diaspora (OPEN Call). We would like to invite proposals for our second session (Invited Papers, joint with Genesis unit) and third session (OPEN Call) based on the theme of "Leaving Home, Returning Home, or Making Home: Reading Genesis Intertextually." We are particularly interested in proposals that explore the themes of family conflicts, separation, and reconciliation, exiles caused by various factors such as climate change, internal displacement, and involuntary migrations, as well as the lives of the diaspora in Genesis and how they relate to our present time. Regarding methodological engagement, we are interested in proposals dealing with the relationship between intertextuality and various reading strategies, which would occur in re-reading the book. They include source criticism, redaction criticism, literary and rhetorical criticism, gender studies, and contemporary cultural or intersectional connections. Papers that deal with intertextual reading in heuristic reading experiences will also be welcome. Our final session is OPEN to all proposals related to Intertextuality and the Hebrew Bible, with preference given to the call for our joint sessions and the focus on the book of Genesis. We strongly encourage the participants to reflect on their concept or methodology of 'intertextuality.'

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Intertextuality in the New Testament

David M. Moffitt
Isaac Augustine Morales, O.P.
Description: The purpose of this unit is to provide a forum for presentation and discussion on intertexual interpretations of New Testament passages. This unit focuses on ways in which the language of texts are recited, echoed, reconfigured, or recontextualized by other texts from the LXX, Greco-Roman philosophers, orators, decrees, Second Temple sources, Hebrew Scriptures, or another ancient source.

Call for papers: The Intertextuality in the New Testament (INT) Section invites proposals for papers during the 2024 annual meeting. Papers may focus on any aspect of intertextuality and New Testament interpretation but should articulate the kind of intertextual work or method being employed.

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Inventing Christianity: Apostolic Fathers, Apologists, and Martyrs

Travis Proctor
Shaily Shashikant Patel
Description: This unit focuses on the writings of the Apostolic Fathers, the apologists, and the authors of martyrdom accounts (AFAM) in the second and third centuries. The goal is to explore their role in the invention of “Christianity” and early Christian identities.

Call for papers: For the 2024 Annual Meeting, Inventing Christianity invites submissions for four panels: 1.Food Rituals and the Invention of Early Christianity: For our first session, we invite submissions related to food and the invention of Christianity in the second and third centuries. We are especially interested in studies of food and foodways that examine the development of Christian eating practices. Areas of examination might include environmental, cultural, doctrinal, or institutional influences. The session is open to any aspect of food ritual as sites of Christian self-definition and differentiation. 2. Beyond Orthodoxy/Heresy (Joint Session with Development of Early Christian Theology): For our second session, organized by the joint efforts of the Inventing Christianity and Development of Early Christian Theology Sections, we invite papers on the theme of “Beyond Orthodoxy/Heresy,” with a focus on the second and third centuries. For this session, we welcome papers that propose alternative paradigms for reconstructing early Christian culture and theology, and which trouble, nuance, or reconsider current scholarly models of “orthodoxy”, “heresy,” and the orthodoxy/heresy binary. 3. Jerusalem: For our third session, we invite papers on Inventing Christianity in Jerusalem. Papers may engage with the theme of Jerusalem as a site of controversy or pilgrimage, as a real or idealized space, as an element of early Christian ritual and liturgical practice, or as a theoretical or theological concept in early Christian writings. 4.Open Call. Our fourth session is an open call session, and welcomes proposals on any topic related to the theme of “Inventing Christianity” in the second or third centuries. We especially welcome proposals that feature the Apostolic Fathers, early Christian apologists, and/or early Christian martyrdom accounts.

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Islands, Islanders, and Scriptures

Althea Spencer Miller
Brian Kolia
Description: This section is a platform for island and islander views, languages, peoples, swaggers, rhythms and more. It engages interests and realities of islanders from and between the Caribbean and Oceania, and how those condition the reception, translation and interpretation of scriptures.

Call for papers: 1. (ISLANDER) NOMADISM AND IDENTITY. Islanders' nomadism, various colonial histories, and dispersions arguably can generate ongoing demands on identity formation in new locations. For Islanders, relocation often involves movement from smaller to larger places, resulting in the transformation/re-formation of identity cohesion as cultural acclimation occurs. Here, too, is an ancestral reverberation of the nomadism of Israel's matriarchs and patriarchs, Jesus' Galilee, Paul's journeys, John’s exile and other moments in which peoples commingle in various imperial contexts. We invite papers that meaningfully engage with the idea of islander nomadism, given (a) the impact of our colonial histories and neo-colonial present and/or (b) our experiences as diasporic or displaced islanders. We also invite presentations that utilize multi-sensuous modalities that engage these incipient theorizings for their hermeneutical, translation, and/or exegetical possibilities. 2. INDIGENOUS/SETTLER READINGS: STORY, RELATION, LAND. This unique session is an opportunity for settler scholars and allies to share and collaborate with Indigenous writers and scholars. Learning from Indigenous emphases and exploring indigenous ways of knowing, our focus is on scripture as Story, rooted in Land, and expressed in Relation. Together, we will explore Indigenous and settler-colonial receptions of scripture and facilitate the creation of new, collective readings. We will explore and reinforce ongoing scholarly responsibilities to Indigenous peoples and places and consider the implications of this work for the field of biblical studies, broadly conceived. Story, Relation and Land are not a final goal, but are conceived as entry points into a deeper conversation around ideologies of identity, economy, ecology and appropriation. Expressions of interest are welcome.

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Israelite Prophetic Literature

Jina Kang
Hyun Chul Paul Kim
Description: This section aims to provide an open forum for scholars to present papers on a variety of topics germane to the study of ancient Israelite prophecy and prophetic literature.

Call for papers: The Israelite Prophetic Literature is accepting proposals for the following sessions: (1) WE ARE ACCEPTING PROPOSALS with papers that define the intersections between “humor and trauma” as a hermeneutical lens to prophetic texts in the Hebrew Bible. Preference will be given towards interdisciplinary approaches or comparative approaches (whether in ancient near eastern, sacred, or popular/cultural expressions). (2) WE ARE ACCEPTING PROPOSALS on a broad range of topics dealing with prophetic literature.

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Israelite Religion in its Ancient Context

Alice Mandell
Timothy Hogue
Description: A forum for the study of religion in Israel and Judea within their larger Southwest Asian and East Mediterranean contexts. Aims to bring together a wide variety of questions, perspectives, periods, disciplines, theories, methods, and kinds of data, e.g., verbal text (literary and pragmatic), visual art, artifacts and architecture; philology (broadly), art-history, sociology and anthropology, and history; theology, ritual, gender, and ethnicity. Above all, the forum seeks to facilitate the systematic framing of questions and analysis of religion in theoretical terms, with theoretical scholarship.

Call for papers: This year we are accepting papers for two sessions. One is completely open. The second session will be a joint session with the Ritual in the Biblical World section. In this joint session, we welcome papers that take a practice-based approach to the study of religion in the ancient Levant, with a focus on Israel and Judah noting that new discoveries as well as new emphasis on domestic religion have dramatically changed scholarly histories of Israelite religion and emphasized its diversity and complexity.

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Jesus Traditions, Gospels, and Negotiating the Roman Imperial World

Adam Winn
Jill Engelhardt
Description: The section aims to encourage the exploration of the diverse ways (accommodation; cooption, ambivalence; self-protective protest; challenge; alternative communities and contestive practices; exposure of imperial strategies etc.) in which Jesus traditions and gospels negotiate the Roman imperial world.

Call for papers: Proposals for papers on any aspect of this negotiation are welcome for the program unit's two sessions.

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Jewish Christianity / Christian Judaism

Jae Hee Han
Description: The broad aim of this research unit is to clarify the religion, history, and sociology of the ancient groups traditionally called, collectively, “Jewish Christianity,” but increasingly “Christian” or “Jesus-believing Judaism.” The group also seeks to clarify the issues involved in conceptualizing such groups as a distinct category of religion in antiquity.

Call for papers: For the 2023 SBL Annual Meeting, the "Jewish-Christianity/Christian Judaism” section welcomes proposals on any topic related to our general theme, including but not limited to proposals relating to our two foci. We plan to hold two sessions this year. 1) This first session, cosponsored with the Christian Apocrypha unit, will focus on questions of Judaism in and through “Apocryphal” literature. This session continues the vibrant conversation from the previous year on topics relating broadly to "Pseudepigrapha," "Christian Apocrypha," and/or Jewish texts transmitted by Christians. Questions of representation of Jews and Judaism in Christian apocryphal texts, as well as representations of Christians in Jewish texts, are also welcomed. 2) Our second session, Manichaeans: Real and Imagined, which is cosponsored with the Syriac Studies unit, raises broader questions regarding the "location" of Manichaeism within and beyond the boundaries of Syriac Studies, and in conversation with adjacent fields, including heresiology, late antique Judaism, liturgy, scholasticism, book culture, and the Roman-Sasanian borderlands. Given the emergence of Manichaeism as a form of "Aramaic Christianity," where should Manichaeism "fit" in relation to the study of Syriac Christianity or Christianity more broadly? What desires and anxieties animate the emergence and durability of "Manichaeism" as a distinct category of thought, in the past and in the present? In what ways might the Manichaean literature, writ large, prove useful for the study of the late antique world and its many communities?

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Johannine Literature

Benjamin Reynolds
Christopher Skinner
Description: Our mission is to address issues and concerns having to do with the analysis and interpretation of the Johannine literature--a major component of the Christian Scriptures, encompassing for our purposes the Gospel of John and the three Johannine letters. The section has historically been committed to highlighting new voices and issues in the field.

Call for papers: The Johannine Literature Section welcomes papers for the 2024 SBL Annual Meeting. We will have three sessions, including one invited session with panelists and respondents on the topic of Emotions in John. We invite paper proposals for two entirely open sessions, which may focus on the Gospel, the Letters of John, or a combination of the two. A wide variety of methodologies, interdisciplinary readings and interpretations are encouraged.

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John the Baptist

James F. McGrath
Tony Burke
Description: While there is always a steady trickle of interest in John the Baptist, recent publications in English, Spanish, and Italian suggest that there is a current surge not only in interest in John as a historical figure, not only also as a literary figure in the canonical Gospels, but in his appearance in Christian apocrypha and in Mandaean literature. These areas are often separated among different program units, and this consultation will provide a place for them to come together and interact.

Call for papers: In this inaugural year of the John the Baptist program unit we are pleased to have three sessions: 1) A book review session focused on two new books: James F. McGrath's John of History, Baptist of Faith (Eerdmans 2024) and Edmondo Lupieri's John of the Mandaeans (Gorgias 2024). While the panel will be assembled by invitation, expressions of interest to the program unit chairs are welcome. This session is co-sponsored by the Traditions of Eastern Late Antiquity AAR program unit. 2) A session exploring non-canonical accounts of the life and death of John the Baptist. This session will be co-sponsored by the Christian Apocrypha SBL program unit. 3) A third open session.

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John's Apocalypse and Cultural Contexts Ancient and Modern

Michelle Fletcher
Olivia Stewart Lester
Description: This section provides an interdisciplinary forum for nontraditional and traditional methods to interact in the exploration of the meaning and significance of the Apocalypse of John and related literature in both their ancient and modern cultural contexts.

Call for papers: In 2024, the John’s Apocalypse section will host four sessions, including one open call: (1) The first is an invited panel on the future of gender studies and the book of Revelation. (2) With the SBL Novum Testamentum Graece – Editio Critica Maior unit, we are co-sponsoring an invited session on the the publication of the Editio Critica Maior of the Book of Revelation. (3) With the Latina/o/e and Latin American Biblical Interpretation section, alongside multiple AAR and SBL units, we invite papers that consider the impact and influence of the work of the late queer performance theorist José Esteban Muñoz on the study of religion and sexuality, especially since 2024 is the 25th anniversary of the publication of Disidentifications. We welcome attention to any facet of Muñoz’s work. In biblical studies, we are particularly interested in the intersections of his thought with latinidades, gender, sexuality, island hermeneutics, the apocalypse, and the utopian. (4) Finally, we invite papers for an open session on any topic related to John’s Apocalypse and Cultural Contexts Ancient and Modern.

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Josephus

Davina Grojnowski
David B. Levenson
Description: The Josephus Group will support the Brill Josephus Project, which is publishing all of his works with translation and commentary. We shall reach out collaboratively to the SBL community with a wide variety of topics related to the study of Josephus.

Call for papers: The Josephus Seminar will host two sessions at the 2024 meeting: 1) a joint session with the Philo of Alexandria Seminar focused on the Brill Josephus and Brill Philo Commentaries (proposals by invitation only); 2) an open session on any Josephus-related topic. We are especially interested in proposals that address the reception history of Josephus’ works.

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Joshua-Judges

Christoph Berner
Sarah Schulz
Description: The Joshua-Judges Section will seek to reach a synthesis of all genuinely pertinent information and insight needed to interpret Joshua and Judges responsibly and competently. Specialists will contribute to understanding contents, background, text, structure, and interpretation of these books.

Call for papers: At the 2024 Annual Meeting, we will have two sessions. -- 1. An open session on Joshua and Judges. Papers dealing with any topic related to either book are welcome. -- 2. An invited session on “Nation and Narration”. In this session, we wish to explore how various narrative elements in the books of Joshua and Judges construct or shape national identity (regarding key features such as integration, social order, political and/or religious self-determination and self-assertion) and thus might hint at literary strategies serving the purpose of “nation-building”.

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Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion

Jimmy Hoke
Kathleen Gallagher Elkins
Melanie Johnson-DeBaufre
Description: The JFSR is the oldest interdisciplinary, interreligious feminist academic journal in religious studies. Founded in 1985, it is published twice annually, in the spring and fall. Located at the intersection of feminist theory and studies in religion, it welcomes contributions that explore a diversity of feminist theories, practices, cultures, and religions. Its editors are committed to rigorous thinking and analysis in the service of the transformation of religious studies as a discipline and the feminist transformation of religious and cultural institutions. Website: http://www.fsrinc.org/jfsr/

Call for papers: The JFSR is the oldest interdisciplinary, interreligious feminist academic journal in religious studies. Founded in 1985, it is published twice annually, in the spring and fall. Located at the intersection of feminist theory and studies in religion, it welcomes contributions that explore a diversity of feminist theories, practices, cultures, and religions. Its editors are committed to rigorous thinking and analysis in the service of the transformation of religious studies as a discipline and the feminist transformation of religious and cultural institutions. Website: http://www.fsrinc.org/jfsr/

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Korean Biblical Colloquium

Chan Sok Park
Hyun Chul Paul Kim
Jin Young Kim
Description: The purpose of this organization is to promote Korean scholarship in biblical studies and related fields and to facilitate fellowship and networking among Korean scholars in those fields. Members of KBC include Koreans and others who are engaged in biblical studies and related fields and who are interested in developing Korean perspectives in those fields and sharing their scholarly experiences with fellow Korean scholars.

Call for papers: Theme: “K-Pop and Hip-Hop: (How) Can Korean/Asian-American biblical scholars learn from Womanist interpreters, and vice versa?” This joint-session of Womanist Interpretation unit and Korean Biblical Colloquium unit will explore the intersectional ways and possibilities among various minoritized biblical interpretations/interpreters. What similarities, and differences, can we hear from these interpretive voices? How can we appreciate hermeneutical influences from each other, but also acknowledge and learn from dissonant hermeneutical tunes mutually? What limits and potentials for our hermeneutical and existential dialogues both in academia and in society, and beyond? OPEN (WE ARE ACCEPTING PAPER PROPOSALS) and INVITED (some presenters will be invited).

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Latino/a/e and Latin American Biblical Interpretation

Gilberto A. Ruiz
Jacqueline M. Hidalgo
Description: The issue of contextualization at the level of reception or interpretation, involving not only location but also perspective, has become paramount in Biblical Studies in recent years. For some time now, a good and growing number of Latino/a American and Latin American biblical scholars have been addressing the problematic of reading the Bible explicitly from their particular placements and optics in society and culture. This proposed Consultation seeks to pursue such work in sustained and systematic fashion by bringing together scholars—Latino/a and Latin American as well as others with an interest in such discussions—from across the spectrum of biblical criticism. Its scope is conceived as broad: first, the biblical texts as such, both testaments; second, readings and readers of these texts in modern and postmodern biblical criticism; lastly, traditions of reading the Bible outside academic criticism. Its approach is also envisioned as wide-ranging: open to a variety of methodological approaches and theoretical perspectives, from the more traditional to the more recent.

Call for papers: For 2024, we seek proposals for three sessions. Alongside multiple AAR and SBL units, we will host two sessions that consider the impact and influence of the work of the late queer performance theorist José Esteban Muñoz on the study of religion and sexuality, especially since 2024 is the 25th anniversary of the publication of Disidentifications. We are inviting panelists for one session, and we are working alongside several units on an open call for an additional session. We welcome attention to any facet of Muñoz’s work. In biblical studies, we are particularly interested in the intersections of his thought with latinidades, gender, sexuality, island hermeneutics, the apocalypse, and the utopian. The second open session, co-sponsored with Poverty in the Biblical World and the AAR’s Liberation Theologies and Latina/o Religion, Culture, and Society program units, honors three leading figures of liberation theology who passed away last year: Enrique Dussel, George/Jorge Pixley, and Franz Hinkelammert. We invite proposals that engage their intellectual legacies, especially by considering their impact on contemporary religious thought and biblical interpretation; the relevance of their ideas for addressing current social and economic crises; intersections between theology, philosophy, and biblical studies in their work; comparative analyses of their contributions and methodologies; and interpretations of scriptural texts that employ their thought to examine the texts’ economic and political dimensions and implications. Finally, we welcome papers for an open session on general topics in Latina/o/e and Latin American biblical interpretation, especially in papers that examine the uses of the Bible in Latina/o/e and Latin American communities, with particular attention to women’s reading practices, reading practices in migrant communities, and bilingual reading practices.

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Latter-day Saint Association of Biblical Scholars

Joshua M. Sears
Shon Hopkin
Description: Latter-day Saint Association of Biblical Scholars

Call for papers: The Latter-day Saint Association of Biblical Scholars (LDSABS) invites presentation proposals for as many as two sessions. Successful paper proposals will demonstrate grounding in the academic methodologies connected to biblical studies and will engage any aspect of the Bible or its reception within the wider Latter-day Saint tradition, including as the Bible is received and reflected in other scriptural texts of the tradition.

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Letters of James, Peter, and Jude

Troy W. Martin
Dennis R. Edwards
Description: The Letters of James, Peter, and Jude Section considers research on these letters that contribute to understanding them and their social contexts. It encourages the use of rhetorical, social-scientific, sociorhetorical, ideological, and hermeneutical methods, as well as other cross-disciplinary approaches in addition to the historical-critical method.

Call for papers: The Letters of James, Peter, and Jude section is conducting a (multi-year) critical assessment of the evidence and methods that inform modern dialogues on matters of “introduction,” including authorship, date, literary relationships, etc. This represents an opportunity to investigate untested assumptions, to revisit long-held viewpoints, and to explore new avenues for answering some foundational interpretive questions. In 2024, we will have four sessions: (1) a joint session with The Bible in Ancient (and Modern) Media, which allows the work of leading experts in ancient media studies (e.g., literacy, linguistics, memory, etc) to engage issues relevant to the Catholic Epistles in an effort to determine how insights on ancient media culture might broaden and inform discussions surrounding the authorship of these letters; (2) a book review of Travis B. Williams and David G. Horrell, 1 Peter: A Critical and Exegetical Commentary, International Critical Commentary, 2 vols. (London: Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2023), in which experts on 1 Peter will assess the commentary and respond to different interpretive conclusions reached therein (e.g., authorship, persecution, recipients, spirits in prison, etc); (3) an invited session with papers devoted to critically assessing the evidence, methods, and assumptions that inform scholarly conclusions regarding the dating of James, 1-2 Peter, and Jude; and (4) an open session with papers exploring any topic related to the study of the Letters of James, Peter, and Jude (although papers that focus specifically on re-evaluating the evidence commonly informing debates about the dating of James, 1-2 Peter, and Jude will be given particular consideration).

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LGBTI/Queer Hermeneutics

Jimmy Hoke
Laurel W. Koepf
Description: Sexual orientation and kinship continues to be contested in public, ecclesial and academic communities across the globe and Biblical interpretation underpins much that is oppressive in these efforts. This section provides a forum for interrogating issues related to these interpretations and for formulating interpretive methods that emerge from the diversity of LGBTI/Q experience and thought.

Call for papers: Sexual orientation and kinship continues to be contested in public, ecclesial and academic communities across the globe and Biblical interpretation underpins much that is oppressive in these efforts. This section provides a forum for interrogating issues related to these interpretations and for formulating interpretive methods that emerge from the diversity of LGBTI/Q experience and thought. We are excited to co-sponsor a panel with Mysticism, Esotericism, and Gnosticism in Antiquity on "Queer and Trans Mystical." The study of medieval Jewish and Christian mystical traditions and Queer theory has had a mutually beneficial relationship for the past couple decades - this panel will bring queer and trans approaches into dialogue with ancient practices of secrecy, revelation, embodied transformations, and different ways of knowing. As always, we will hold an Open Session where scholars should feel welcome and highly encouraged to propose papers driven by any wide range of interests and topics around LGBTIA2Q+ approaches and perspectives on biblical texts, contexts, histories, reception, and politics.

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Linguistics and Biblical Hebrew

Aaron Hornkohl
Misheck Nyirenda
Description: The goals of the unit: to provide a forum where scholars can share the results of their research on different aspects of Biblical Hebrew; advocate the advantages of linguistic methods for biblical studies; build a platform for interdisciplinary partnership with other disciplines and units.

Call for papers: 2024 Annual Meeting The Linguistics and Biblical Hebrew Section solicits papers for FIVE sessions: The FIRST SESSION is non-thematic and open to a range of linguistically informed papers. We invite papers that address the study of Biblical Hebrew using a well-articulated linguistic theory and/or apply linguistics to particular Biblical Hebrew constructions or corpora. The SECOND SESSION is a thematic session entitled ‘Syntax of Deverbal Nominals’. We invite proposals for papers for a Linguistics and Biblical Hebrew thematic session. We welcome papers that explore the syntax of deverbal nominals in Biblical Hebrew and the complex relationships with the verbs from which they derive. The THIRD SESSION, co-sponsored with the Masoretic Studies section is entitled ‘Contemporary Theoretical Perspectives on Masoretic Phenomena'. We invite paper proposals for a Linguistics and Biblical Hebrew joint session with Masoretic Studies. We welcome papers that explore a Masoretic phenomenon through a contemporary theoretical perspective and the implications of such an analysis on the interpretation of the Masoretic data. The FOURTH SESSION is a joint open session with NAPH, entitled ‘Linguistics and Biblical Hebrew’. Papers that address the study of Biblical Hebrew using a well-articulated linguistic method are welcome, and those that apply linguistics to particular Biblical Hebrew constructions or corpora are especially encouraged. The FIFTH SESSION is a joint thematic session with NAPH, entitled 'The Linguistic Profile of the Pentateuch'. Converging lines of evidence indicate the early recognition of certain biblical corpora, among them the books of the Torah. We invite papers that apply well-articulated linguistic theory to the Hebrew of the Pentateuch and/or apply linguistics to particular Biblical Hebrew constructions in the Pentateuch, especially in contradistinction to other biblical corpora and/or non-biblical sources.

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Literature and History of the Persian Period

Adrianne Spunaugle
Jason M. Silverman
Description: The Literature and History of the Persian Period Group emphasizes an interdisciplinary approach to biblical texts and related literature of the 6th-4th centuries BCE by bringing together archaeologists, Assyriologists, classicists, Egyptologists, and sociologists, to name but a few, with biblical scholars specializing in various facets and texts pertinent to this era.

Call for papers: For 2024 we invite papers for three sessions. 1) With the Deuteronomistic History section we invite papers on Presences and Absences of Persia in the Deuteronomistic History. Please send abstracts through the DtrH section. 2) With the Egyptology and Ancient Israel section we invite papers on "Elephantine in Context". Please send abstracts though the Egyptology section. Both sessions combine invited speakers with an open call. 3) Lastly, we invite any papers on Persian period literature, especially those seeking a critical methodology for dating literature from the Persian Period.

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Mark Passion Narrative

Jocelyn McWhirter
Thomas R. Shepherd
Description: The Mark Passion Narrative Seminar approaches Mark 14-16 from a variety of methodological approaches in dialogue. The goal is twofold – to gain new insights into the Mark PN within the context of the entire Gospel of Mark and to illustrate how methods in dialogue can produce meaningful understandings of texts.

Call for papers: The Mark Passion Narrative Seminar invites its members and friends of the seminar to propose papers that address any theological theme in Mark 14-16. Our 2.5-hour sessions each feature three presentations followed by a response and discussion. Submit your proposal through the SBL website. Questions? Contact co-chair Jocelyn McWhirter, jmcwhirter@albion.edu.

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Masoretic Studies

Elvira Martin-Contreras
Description: The purpose for this section is to discuss, research and promote the field of Masoretic Studies among Hebrew Bible Scholars. Masoretic Studies seeks to clarify the translation and interpretation of the Hebrew Bible text through the use of the Masorah, to further our understanding of the history of the Masorah, and to explore related fields (e.g. grammar, Rabbinic Studies).

Call for papers: The Masoretic Studies section is planning to have four sessions at the 2024 Annual Meeting. The first three sessions will be open. Papers can address any topic pertaining to Masoretic studies, such as Masoretic annotations, comparative Masora, Hebrew biblical manuscripts, etc. The presentation of the work of doctoral candidates and early career researchers are especially welcome. The fourth session co-sponsored with the Linguistics and Biblical Hebrew section has the theme “Contemporary Theoretical Perspectives on Masoretic Phenomena.” Papers that explore a Masoretic phenomenon through a contemporary theoretical perspective, and the implications of such an analysis on the interpretation of the Masoretic data, are welcome in this session.

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Matthew

Carolin Ziethe
Nathan Eubank
Description: The Matthew Section sponsors invited and submitted papers, panels, reviews and welcomes submission on any topic related to Matthean scholarship.

Call for papers: The Matthew Section plans to hold three sessions at the 2024 Annual Meeting. The first is an open session. We welcome submissions on any topic relevant to the study of Matthew’s Gospel. Submissions will be evaluated based on the originality and clarity of the thesis proposed, command of current and classic scholarship (author; year), quality and clarity of supporting evidence, and the overall contribution it makes to Matthean scholarship. Please note that proposals lacking a clear thesis and explicit reference to the scholarly context of the proposed paper will not be considered. Non-western perspectives are especially encouraged. Abstracts should be less than 300 words. The other two sessions are invited panels, one on Matthias Konradt’s, Christology, Torah, and Ethics in the Gospel of Matthew. The other, in collaboration with the Synoptic Gospels Section, is a review of Alan Culpepper’s new Matthew commentary (NTL).

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Meals in the HB/OT and Its World

Margaret E. Cohen
Michelle A. Stinson
Description: The unit explores the cultural-anthropological centrality of meals, utilizing the considerable data about food and feasting from the OT/HB and ANE (textual, iconographic, archaeological), to address questions of gender, social formation/identity, intercultural dynamics, ecology, ideology & theology.

Call for papers: The SBL ‘Meals in the HB/OT and Its World’ unit will host two sessions at the 2024 SBL Annual Conference in San Diego. The first is a joint-session with the ‘Book of the Twelve’ unit. This open session welcomes paper proposals on the topic of ‘Agrarian and Food-Focused Readings of the Book of the Twelve.’ If the majority of the population of ancient Israel—even among the elites—had a close connection to the land, how might this familiarity with agriculture/husbandry have influenced the literature that they produced? Fruitful avenues for investigation include (but are in no way limited to) trauma/violence depicted with the language and metaphors of food/agriculture (e.g., warfare in the Book of Joel), agricultural abundance (or lack thereof) as a recurring theme within a book/s, as well as explorations of the Book of the Twelve’s use of food language, meal scenes, and agricultural imagery for exploring the experience of judgment and restoration (e.g., the ‘cup of wrath’ in Obadiah, hills flowing with ‘new wine’ in Amos 9). The second is a non-themed open session. We invite papers that deal broadly with food, foodways, feasting, famine, agriculture and more within the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament and its World. As we look to foster new voices in the field, we especially encourage submissions from early career scholars and graduate students. Our unit members can offer supportive feedback and we welcome new colleagues working on a variety of topics which intersect with food.

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Metacriticism of Biblical Scholarship

Jill Hicks-Keeton
Mark Leuchter
Description: This unit interrogates the contours and boundaries of the discipline of biblical studies, including analysis of the guild's historic and current preoccupations, methods, and participant composition, while providing a forum for constructive recommendations for future directions in the field.

Call for papers: We are hosting three sessions. One is an invited panel on the theme "The Vulnerable Bible," featuring three recent books in conversation on the theme of "the Bible" and vulnerability (to moral critique, manuscript discoveries, textual corruption, readings and "mis"readings, etc.): Andrew Jacobs' Gospel Thrillers, Rebecca Scharbach Wollenberg's The Closed Book, and Jill Hicks-Keeton's Good Book. The second invited panel is a collection of senior scholars invited to review their own first books. For the third panel, we are issuing an open call on the broad theme "Claiming the Boundaries of Biblical Studies." Critical research over the last several decades has attempted to account for the reality that scholarly study of the Bible has always been animated by agendas beyond the Academy. In recent years, the “big tent” ethos of the Society of Biblical Literature has led to various groups and institutions explicitly identified by these agendas have attempted to assert their place within the field of biblical studies within the society, but this is a symptom of larger trends where the study of the Bible is claimed by special interest groups with an eye to specific political, economic, and even military goals. This session invites paper proposals that address how such groups attempt to claim and redefine the boundaries of biblical studies in different ways. Proposal topics might include: the use of biblical texts for justifying international military conflicts, methodologically questionable approaches to archaeology in Israel and elsewhere, the stigmatizing of theories that challenge status-quo approaches to research methods, and the privileging of theological axioms in institutional settings involving the examination of biblical traditions. Paper proposals that address any of the goals and interests of the program unit will also be considered.

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Metaphor Theory and the Hebrew Bible

Danilo Verde
Description: This section aims to advance the understanding of how metaphor operates in the Hebrew Bible, with a focus on how applied metaphor theory can enhance our work as Bible scholars; it also aims to deepen our knowledge of the diverse metaphorical language used in the Hebrew Bible.

Call for papers: For the 2024 SBL Annual Meeting, we plan to organize three sessions. The first is a roundtable on “Woman Zion,” co-sponsored with the Biblical Hebrew Poetry and Book of Isaiah groups. While only invited speakers will contribute to this panel discussion, we accept proposals for the second and third sessions. The second session will focus on the reception and development of Hebrew Bible metaphors in intertestamental literature, including the Dead Sea Scrolls, and in the New Testament. The third session is open to papers covering any aspect of contemporary theories of metaphor that can contribute to the understanding of metaphorical phenomena in the Hebrew Bible. To be considered, abstracts must contain the following elements: scope, main thesis, case study, methodology, and relevance of the proposal.

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Midrash

Rivka Ulmer
W. David Nelson
Description: The Midrash Section is a scholarly forum for the comprehensive, interdisciplinary study and analysis of the particular mode of interpreting the Bible developed and utilized by the rabbis of late antiquity.

Call for papers: The Midrash Section invites paper proposals for two sessions it will sponsor at the 2024 Annual Meeting of the SBL: 1) A joint session with the Aramaic section. Possible topics for this open session include: "Exegetical questions in the Targumim," “Aramaic in the earlier Midrashim;” “Midrashim that are preserved entirely in Aramaic, e.g., the Esther Midrash in the Babylonian Talmud;” “What is the function of the Aramaic sections in later Midrash? Why not Hebrew;” “The Aramaic dialects in midrashic narratives in the Jerusalem Talmud;” “Does Aramaic in Midrash reflect a spoken language at the time when Christianity developed?” “Aramaic in Genesis Rabbah.” 2) An open session devoted to any aspect of the study of Midrash and related literature including medieval midrash and Bible commentaries.

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Minoritized Criticism and Biblical Interpretation

Eric A. Thomas
Yii-Jan Lin
Description: The issue of contextualization at the level of reception and interpretation, involving not only social-cultural location but also ideological perspective, has become paramount in Biblical Studies in recent years. For some time now, a substantial and ever-growing number of African American, Asian American, and Latino/a American biblical scholars have been addressing the problematic of reading the biblical texts explicitly from their respective placements and optics in society and culture. This proposed Consultation seeks to expand such work by bringing together scholars from these and other population groups, both national and international, that have traditionally been classified as “minority” groups but who today classify themselves as “minoritized” groups. A word about the term “minoritized” is in order. Such groups have undergone what in Racial-Ethnic Studies is known as a process of racialization or ethnicization, grounded in real or perceived biological or cultural features, respectively. The process itself is dialectical as well as differential. It is dialectical insofar as it entails a construction of a racial or ethnic Other by a Self, which in the process constructs itself as separate. It is differential insofar as such a construction involves an unequal relation of power between Self and Other, one of domination and subordination, respectively. When such a process takes place at the level of a political unit or state, then one can speak of such groups as “minoritized” by a “dominantized” group formation. The proposed Consultation thus seeks to bring together critics from such groups not only within the United States but also globally, in order to work together as critics on the problematic of minoritization-dominantization at all levels of the discipline as conceived and practiced today. Its scope is thus quite broad: (1) the ancient texts as such, canonical as well as extracanonical; (2) readings and readers of these texts in modern and postmodern

Call for papers: This year we are seeking papers along the theme of minoritized explorations of the Kingdom of God—that is, papers that ask: what are minoritized visions of the basileia tou theou? What are reading practices employed by minoritized, intersectional, decolonial interpreters of this kingdom, particularly as counter to notions of a universalized kingdom of God/heaven constructed by white supremacy (racism, heteronormativity, misogyny, capitalism, etc.)? How does one "unmap" the kingdom of God/heaven across the Hebrew Bible and New Testament as dominant discourses have conceptualized it, and rethink it, as home place, as playground, or something Otherwise?

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Mysticism, Esotericism, and Gnosticism in Antiquity

Jaeda Calaway
Paul Robertson
Description: This unit is dedicated to the critical investigation of religious currents of secrecy (esotericism), knowledge (gnosticism), and/or their revelation through religious praxis (mysticism) as they developed during the formative periods of Judaism and Christianity (500 BCE-500 CE). This unit is committed to the examination of texts and artifacts created and used in early Jewish, Christian, Greco-Roman, Egyptian, Persian, and Babylonian contexts. We are open to the application of a wide range of historical, comparative, and critical methodologies, including reception history for those who wish to study the effects of these texts and artifacts in later historical periods.

Call for papers: (1) MEGA welcomes papers on any topic related to the study of knowledge (gnosticism), secrecy (esotericism), and their revelation through religious praxis (mysticism) from a wide variety of critical methodologies and theoretical perspectives. (2) In addition, we welcome papers in conjunction with AAR’s Platonism and Neoplatonism group on "Theosis and the Bounds of Being": theosis, as a consummate expression of transcendence from antiquity to the present, challenges the delimitations of knowledge, cosmos, and contemplation and strains at the very boundaries of experience. Theosis challenges epistemological limitations, bending and breaking ways of knowing, and complicates the boundaries between orthodoxy and heterodoxy. This joint panel encourages submissions exploring the boundaries that characterize theosis, where they are, whether they exist, what they may be, how they function, and how they constrain, restrict, enable, and inspire. (3) Finally, we welcome papers in conjunction with the LGBTIQ/ueer Hermeneutics Group on "Queer and Trans Mystical." This joint panel welcomes papers that will bring queer and trans approaches into dialogue with ancient practices of secrecy, revelation, embodied transformations, and different ways of knowing.

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Nag Hammadi and Gnosticism

Pamela Mullins Reaves
Tuomas Rasimus
Description: The Nag Hammadi and Gnosticism Section provides a forum for current international research on the Coptic codices discovered at Nag Hammadi, Egypt, in 1945. Research areas include issues of text, interpretation, social and religio-historical contexts, codicology, and translation.

Call for papers: The Nag Hammadi and Gnosticism Section plans to hold three sessions at the 2024 Annual Meeting in San Diego. There is an open call for papers on any topic related to the study of Nag Hammadi and/or Gnostic traditions. We especially welcome proposals addressing Gnostic and related traditions in dialogue with Neoplatonism. We also plan to hold a session with invited papers focused on how Nag Hammadi and Gnostic traditions contribute to revised understandings of Christian origins in the second and third centuries. For all sessions that seek proposals, advanced graduate students and scholars of traditionally under-represented groups are especially encouraged to submit abstracts for consideration.

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National Association of Professors of Hebrew

Paul Overland
Zev Garber
Description: The NAPH is an Affiliate of the SBL. For additional information on the NAPH, please contact the program unit chair.

Call for papers: For the NAPH session titled, "How to Facilitate Meaningful L2 Output for Learners of Biblical Hebrew," kindly propose either (a) a theory-and-rationale paper explaining the nature of meaningful L2 output, and its pertinence for BH learners, or (b) a paper describing and demonstrating how you have facilitated such L2 output (specify learner-level, whether first-semester, second-semester, or third-semester-or-above). We encourage all papers to be of publishable quality. Contact Paul Overland (poverlan@ashland.edu). The NAPH session titled, "Imagine Universal Assessment of Proficiency in Biblical Hebrew (Working Group)," is Year Two of a two-year panel that has been exploring and experimenting with development of a national exam in Biblical Hebrew. While session-visitors are welcome and may offer observations, the ultimate direction and outcomes will be determined by panelists who already have committed to work on this project. A session on "Zionism, Religion and Today's Israel" will be offered. In the 127th year of the birth of modern Zionism (1897), there is much of the biblical message to celebrate: a sovereign Jewish nation on the ancestral land, the ingathering of the exiles, Jewish identity revival, and, no less of a miracle, the triumphant rapprochement in Jewish-Christian-Muslim relations. From the birth of Zionism to today, religious tropes have dominated Israeli society and continue to be appropriated by Israeli politicians and pundits with a zeal matched only by the ancient prophets. This session will explore the rhetoric being brought into play today by the full spectrum of the Israeli political movements, whether those advocates are the secular and modern orthodox in support of a more liberal leaning society or ultra-orthodox leaning to the more conservative vision of tomorrow’s Israel. Final session, Book Event, Zev Garber and Kenneth Hanson, eds., Jewish Studies and the Fourth Gospel (GCRR Press, 2024).

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Nature Imagery and Conceptions of Nature in the Bible

Dalit Rom-Shiloni
Mark J. Boda
Description: The section focuses on the plethora of nature references in the Bible, discussed multi-disciplinarily by scholars of Bible, archaeology, iconography, life & natural sciences, and more. Our goals are to enable better exegesis of biblical nature imagery and to address biblical conceptions of nature.

Call for papers: We are planning to have three sessions in San Diego 2024, all open for suggested proposals. (1) We invite papers for the Open session on any topic relevant to this group’s focus on nature imagery in the Bible. (2) We call for proposals on the theme Precipitation (rains of different kinds) and Water sources which are used within various biblical texts including narrative, poetry, wisdom, and beyond. This will bring to completion our three year focus on climate experiences. We encourage presenters to engage in multi-disciplinary collaborations to decipher the biblical imagery, its contents and functions. Finally, (3) The Ancient Near Eastern Iconography and the Bible, the Biblical Lexicography, and the Nature Imagery and Conceptions of Nature in the Bible Program Units are pleased to announce another year of collaboration. We are planning a joint session on the theme of “Identification of Flora and Fauna in the Bible.” We seek proposals for papers that engage methodological considerations on textual, iconographical, archeological and/or biological materials in establishing the varieties of plants, animals, and other aspects of nature that appear in the Bible.

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Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education (NetVUE)

David Cunningham
Lynne Spoelhof
Description: NetVUE

Call for papers: NetVUE

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New Testament Textual Criticism

Christina M. Kreinecker
Jan Krans
Description: The New Testament Textual Criticism Section seeks to foster the study and criticism of the text of the New Testament—including examination of manuscripts and other sources, evaluation of their textual variation, restorations of texts, and the investigation of the history of its transmission—in its cultural and historical contexts. SBL has had a group dedicated to this topic as far back as 1946.

Call for papers: The programme unit welcomes paper proposals from all aspects of New Testament Textual Criticism, including the examination of manuscripts and other sources in a variety of languages; codicology and material studies; the investigation of the textual history and transmission of the New Testament through the ages; and critical reflection on methodology, approaches, and the history of the discipline. Please submit your proposal through the SBL online system.

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Novum Testamentum Graecum: Editio Critica Maior

Christina M. Kreinecker
Annette Hüffmeier
Description: The unit presents the on-going work on the Editio Critica Maior (ECM), a comprehensive text-critical edition of the Greek New Testament that exhibits the history of the Greek text through its first millennium as documented in manuscripts from the second century until the invention of letterpress printing. It provides scholars engaged in the tasks of exegesis and textual criticism with all the relevant materials found in Greek manuscripts, patristic citations, and early translations. The selection of Greek manuscripts rests on an evaluation of all known primary witnesses, and each of the manuscripts selected is cited completely with all its variants. This opens the way for a new understanding of the history of the text, the more so because all relevant evidence is stored on databases. The primary line of the ECM presents a text based on a careful application of internal and external criteria, streamlined by the Coherence-Based Genealogical Method.

Call for papers: This year the programme unit plans to host two sessions. For the open-call session we welcome paper proposals of reports and updates on the on-going work and research on the Editio Critica Maior (ECM) as well as papers that critically reflect on the ECM. The second will be a joint invited session with the “John’s Apocalypse and Cultural Contexts Ancient and Modern” programme unit to discuss and reflect on the new ECM of the Book of Revelation. Please submit your proposal through the SBL online system.

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Numismatic Evidence and Biblical Interpretation

David M. May
Michael P. Theophilos
Description: This Program Unit explores how ancient coinage illumines the interpretation of early Christianity and biblical literature. It will appeal to scholars interested in epigraphic, iconographic, and historical questions, as well as those who specialize in the social history of early Christianity.

Call for papers: The Numismatic Evidence and Biblical Interpretation Section welcomes papers for the 2024 SBL Annual Meeting. We will have three sessions. The first session (open call) invites paper proposals on the numismatic illumination of the social and cultural world of the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. This may include, but is not limited to, historical, linguistic, cultural and archaeological dimensions. The second session (open call) invites paper proposals which focus on any specific aspect of how ancient coinage illuminates the interpretation other biblical literature, including, among other considerations, epigraphic, iconographic, and historical matters. The third session (invited) consists of a collaborative session with colleagues in the Rhetoric of Religious Antiquity Program Unit and guests from the American Numismatic Society (New York).

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Papyrology and Early Christian Backgrounds

AnneMarie Luijendijk
Brent Nongbri
Description: The Papyrology and Early Christian Backgrounds Group explores how the ancient papyri illumine the world of early Christianity and will appeal to scholars interested in paleographic, linguistic, and textual questions, as well as those who specialize in the social and cultural history of early Christianity.

Call for papers: The Papyrology and Early Christian Backgrounds Group is sponsoring three sessions at the 2024 Annual Meeting. Two of the sessions are accepting proposals for papers which can address any of the group’s themes, including paleography, codicology, linguistics and textual criticism, as well as larger questions relating to papyrology and the social and cultural history of early Christianity. A third session will be a book panel with invited speakers reviewing Roberta Mazza's book, Stolen Fragments: Black Markets, Bad Faith and the Illicit Trade in Ancient Artefacts (Stanford University Press, 2024).

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Paul and Politics

Arminta Fox
Anna Miller
Description: The purposes of the Paul and Politics Group are to bring together several currently separate but often overlapping lines of investigation and interpretation of the apostle Paul, his mission, his letters, and his longer-range impact. Those lines of investigation include "Paul and the politics of the churches," "Paul and the politics of Israel," "Paul and the politics of the Roman Empire" and "Paul and politics of Interpretation."

Call for papers: The Paul and Politics Section proposes four sessions at the 2024 Annual Meeting in San Diego, California. Three of the sessions will be open for paper proposals. The FIRST SESSION is a call for papers that interrogate Pauline literature, sexuality, bodily autonomy, and reproductive justice in ancient and contemporary politics, recognizing that reproductive rights are currently a significant site of ongoing social and political struggle. Papers that consider this focus through multiple lenses such as gender analysis, economic inequalities, political systems analysis, feminist analysis, and womanist analysis are especially encouraged. The SECOND SESSION is an open call session for pre-circulated papers with preference given to early career researchers and graduate students working on topics related to the relationship(s) between "Paul" and "politics" (in the broadest sense of both of these terms). The THIRD CALL is an open session inviting papers on any element of research related to the relationship(s) between “Paul” and “politics” in the broadest sense of these terms. The FOURTH SESSION, co-sponsored with the Feminist Hermeneutics of the Bible Section, is titled “Gal. 3:28 in Feminist and Womanist Perspectives.” This invited panel of feminist and womanist scholars will enhance our understanding of this critical text by bringing to bear intersectional approaches that engage gender, race, and sexuality.

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Paul within Judaism

Karin Hedner Zetterholm
Matthew V. Novenson
Description: While the opposition between Paul and Judaism has been the undisputed point of departure in much previous Pauline scholarship, the aim of this program unit is to develop Pauline studies from the hypothesis that Paul remained within and practiced Judaism.

Call for papers: For the 2024 Annual Meeting we will have one invited and one open-call session. The invited session will focus on texts that may seem difficult to reconcile with the Paul within Judaism perspective. For the open-call session we welcome in particular proposals dealing with passages that appear difficult to reconcile with the Paul within Judaism perspective.

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Pauline Epistles

Laura Dingeldein
Matthew Thiessen
Description: The Pauline Epistles section aims to stimulate critical analysis of the letters of Paul by offering a platform for new research. The section maintains a historical orientation and typically focuses on situating the undisputed Pauline letters in their immediate social, political, religious, and intellectual contexts.

Call for papers: For the 2024 Annual Meeting in San Diego, the Pauline Epistles section is planning two open-call sessions. For these sessions, we invite any paper proposals that fit our section description (which is provided above). We will give special consideration to paper proposals that focus on Paul’s views regarding sexual practices and sexuality. In addition to these open-call sessions, we will host a panel of invited speakers to explore the topic of “Paul and Porneia.” Finally, we plan to co-sponsor, with units on The Historical Paul and Healthcare and Disability in the Ancient World, a book panel on Isaac Soon’s A Disabled Apostle: Impairment and Disability in the Letters of Paul (OUP, 2023).

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Pauline Theology

Erin Heim
Lisa Bowens
Description: The unit has been set up in order to explore central issues in Pauline theology. No single understanding of "Pauline theology," or of how it is to be delimited from other aspects of Pauline discourse, is assumed at the outset. A complementary goal is the introduction of Pauline textual and theological insights into conversations with other fields, for example, with brain research, ecology, and race.

Call for papers: The Pauline Theology Unit invites paper proposals for sessions exploring questions related to both (1) the interpretation of Pauline ethics and (2) the ethics of Pauline interpretation. On the one hand, papers might examine key and contested themes in Paul’s own moral teaching, the theological dimensions of Paul’s understanding of ethical agency and moral acts, the ethical valences or entailments of Pauline anthropology, ecclesiology, or other prominent theological themes, or draw discrete aspects of Paul’s ethics into conversation with other perspectives in moral theology, ancient or modern. On the other hand, papers might explore pressing moral questions which attend the production, reading and interpretation of Paul’s letters and/or the reception of their theology: What moral challenges attend the interpretation of Paul’s theology? Are there aspects of Paul’s legacy which are—or ought to be—morally impossible for us? What ethical considerations accompany the historical and doctrinal dimensions of attempts to ‘do justice to Paul’ as readers? The committee welcomes proposals which engage the long history of the reception of Paul’s letters and their theology as well as those which concentrate upon the more immediate horizon of contemporary scholarship, both historical and theological.

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Pentateuch

Dominik Markl
Julia Rhyder
Description: The Pentateuch Section provides a forum within the SBL for presentation and discussion of research on the Pentateuch, with a particular focus on transmission-historical issues and linkage of that area of inquiry with other more synchronic methodologies.

Call for papers: For the 2024 San Diego meeting, we will have an invited panel (co-sponsored with the Historiography and the Hebrew Bible unit) devoted to the topic of Pentateuch and Pedagogy. A second invited session will be a text workshop on Exodus 32 that explores how panelists might approach the task of teaching such a text in their respective contexts, and the role (if any) of compositional and historical models in their pedagogical approach. We will also host two open sessions in 2023. Paper proposals in all areas of Pentateuchal research are welcome.

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Performance Criticism of the Bible and Other Ancient Texts

Jeanette Mathews
Peter S. Perry
Description: This interdisciplinary unit is intended to foster discussion about how the creation and interpretation of biblical and other ancient texts has been shaped by their oral transmission and aural reception by ancient communities, using the methods associated with performance criticism.

Call for papers: The Performance Criticism of the Bible and Other Ancient Texts (PC-BOAT) section will offer three sessions on the topic of Bible Translation and Performance:
  • Translation Theory and Performance: James Maxey will help us to explore contemporary translation theories and performance criticism to facilitate synergy between these two approaches and to contribute to the advancement of both. Concrete examples in theory and practice of Bible translation will be discussed, which have an impact on Bible translation for various communities, academia, and church use. Gerald West will explore the relationship between translation and performance based on his research on community-based praxis. Two invited respondents will interact and the whole audience will be invited to participate.
  • Sign Language and Performance Criticism: There is much for biblical scholars to learn from the deaf community about performance as a critical lens to analyze biblical texts. For many scholars, performative issues such as tone, spatialization, and emotion are considered optional. However, in sign language, these elements are not optional. We are honored to have Mr. Noah Bucholz, a PhD candidate at Princeton Theological Seminary and a lecturer at Princeton University, as our primary speaker. Noah Bucholz is a profound Deaf scholar, well-known as a Bible translator and a trainer of deaf translators. His presentation will delve into the interplay of performance criteria in Sign Language linguistics and how Deaf epistemology can provide a different perspective on Bible texts, benefiting both the Deaf and hearing communities in exegesis, hermeneutics and translation praxis. Three panelists who are involved in Sign Language Bible translation projects in various capacities will respond with their own examples. This will be followed by a time of interaction between the presenter, panelists, and the audience.
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Philo of Alexandria

Justin Rogers
Description: Philo’s works are invaluable sources about not only his own thought and exegesis but also such related fields as Judaica, philosophy, history, Classics, New Testament, and early Christianity. This Seminar focuses on these topics and on commentaries-in-preparation on Philonic treatises.

Call for papers: For 2024, the Philo Seminar is planning three sessions: (1) an open call for papers, with special attention to Philo and the New Testament, (2) an invited panel on Philo's De providentia, (3) a joint session with the Josephus Seminar focused on the Brill Josephus and Brill Philo Commentaries (proposals by invitation only).

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Philology in Hebrew Studies

Ethan Schwartz
Description: This program unit aims to take up the dual challenge of reflecting self-critically on the nature of philology as a discipline and developing rigorous methodologies of philological study, particularly as may pertain to the Hebrew Bible and related literature.

Call for papers: Philology in Hebrew Studies will hold four panels in 2024: --- 1. INVITED. This session will feature scholars who regularly teach introductions to the Hebrew Bible in various institutional settings in the U.S. They will discuss how recent scholarly developments should impact how we are to teach such introductions today. The session is jointly sponsored with the Academic Teaching and Biblical Studies unit. --- 2. INVITED. This session will be a roundtable discussion of Robert S. Kawashima, The Archaeology of Ancient Israelite Knowledge (Indiana University Press, 2022). --- 3. MIXED INVITED/OPEN. This session will be a mix of invited and submitted papers on the question “What does the term ‘theology’ mean in the academic study of the Hebrew Bible?” Although this term is used frequently in our field, it means different things to different scholars—often leading to confusion. For instance, while some use it with reference to the content of primary texts, others use it with reference to a method or approach. While some regard it as an ideal to be achieved, others regard it as a pitfall to be avoided. In addition to a set of invited speakers, we welcome submissions for papers that critically investigate the meaning(s) of this term and make an argument for its possibilities or limits in the study of the Hebrew Bible. This session is jointly sponsored with the Theology of the Hebrew Scriptures unit. Proposals should be submitted to Philology. --- 4. OPEN. We welcome submissions that address any aspect of the theme of the unit, including those of the sessions described above.

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Postcolonial Studies and Biblical Studies

David Janzen
Sung Uk Lim
Description: This section offers a forum for papers exploring any aspect of the relation between postcolonial studies and biblical studies, including both the use of the Bible in the modern colonial enterprise and the application of postcolonial models to the ancient world.

Call for papers: The Postcolonial Studies and Biblical Studies Section will host four sessions at the 2024 Annual Meeting, three of which are jointly sponsored. 1. The first session is open and seeking papers that use postcolonial analysis and/or ideas associated with decolonization as a lens to explore biblical texts, their contexts, and/or the use of the Bible in modern colonial, postcolonial, and neocolonial contexts. 2. We will have an invited panel session on Bible Translation and Decolonization in Global Contexts, jointly sponsored with the Asian and Asian-American Hermeneutics section and the African Biblical Hermeneutics section. 3. The third session is jointly sponsored with the Minoritized Criticism and Biblical Interpretation section and reviews the book "Reading in These Times: Purposes and Practices of Minoritized Biblical Criticism," edited by Tat-siong Benny Liew and Fernando F. Segovia. 4. Finally, we will co-sponsor an invited session, Talk with the President, with the African Biblical Hermeneutics section, the Asian and Asian-American Hermeneutics section, the Contextual Biblical Interpretation section, the Islands, Islanders, and Scriptures section, the Latino/a/e and Latin American Biblical Interpretation section, and the Minoritized Criticism and Biblical Interpretation section.

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Poverty in the Biblical World

Francisco Lozada, Jr.
Kelly Murphy
Description: This unit will examine poverty, servitude, and related issues in the Hebrew Bible, Early Judaism, and Early Christianity. While non-canonical texts and related materials will be included, primary focus will be on biblical texts. Innovative interdisciplinary methods as well as traditional exegesis are welcome.

Call for papers: At the 2024 annual meeting, the Poverty in the Biblical World program unit will have three sessions. The first session will explore how the intersection of immigration policies, poverty, and biblical interpretation has been a subject of ongoing scholarly interest either in the social dimension reflected in the text or in the world the scholar/reader brings to the text. In recognition of the centennial of the 1924 Immigration Act (Johnson-Reed Act or the National Origins Act), this session aims to explore into the historical, social, and interpretative dimensions surrounding this pivotal legislation. Scholars are invited to critically engage with the 1924 Immigration Law, exploring its lasting impact on inequality and its intersections with biblical interpretation. This session will consist of invited papers. The second open session, co-sponsored with the Latino/a/e and Latin American Biblical Interpretation and the AAR’s Liberation Theologies and Latina/o Religion, Culture, and Society program units, honors three leading figures of liberation theology who passed away last year: Enrique Dussel, George/Jorge Pixley, and Franz Hinkelammert. We invite proposals that engage their intellectual legacies, especially by considering their impact on contemporary religious thought and biblical interpretation; the relevance of their ideas for addressing current social and economic crises; intersections between theology, philosophy, and biblical studies in their work; comparative analyses of their contributions and methodologies; and interpretations of scriptural texts that employ their thought to examine the texts’ economic and political dimensions and implications. Proposals for this joint session should be submitted to the Latino/a/e and Latin American Biblical Interpretation unit. Finally, our third session is co-sponsored with the Early Christianity and Ancient Economy program unit. Here we invite papers that explore any aspect of inequality in urban and/or rural environment

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Prayer in Antiquity

Andrew R. Krause
Description: The Prayer in Antiquity Section examines prayer in Israelite, Jewish, Christian and pagan contexts. Moving beyond historical- and form-critical methodologies, and approaches that reduce prayer simply to text, presentations will examine prayer within its cultural context and give priority to understanding prayer as embodied practice.

Call for papers: The Prayer in Antiquity program unit will host three sessions in the 2024 SBL Annual Meeting. The first session will address the relationship between prayer and ancient religious poetry. We welcome proposals relating to poetry and divine-human communication, broadly defined, in biblical, Jewish, Christian, and polytheistic sources in various languages and from various periods. Second, we will hold a partially-invited session on prayer and materiality. Proposals relating to prayer spaces, artifacts, and paraphernalia from various traditions and periods are sought. Third, our final session will be an open session. Proposals to this program unit should identify the texts that will be examined and the kind of methodology that will be used.

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Prophetic Texts and Their Ancient Contexts

Jennifer Singletary
Hanna Tervanotko
Description: The objectives of this group are: (1) to foster as much discussion as possible among participants in the sessions without limiting the number of participants; (2) to involve a wide variety of viewpoints from the international academy interested in "prophetic texts and their ancient contexts"; and (3) to encourage creativity and diversity among those interested in this field by inviting proposals for papers within the described parameters.

Call for papers: The objectives of this group are: (1) to foster as much discussion as possible among participants in the sessions without limiting the number of participants; (2) to involve a wide variety of viewpoints from the international academy interested in "prophetic texts and their ancient contexts"; and (3) to encourage creativity and diversity among those interested in this field by inviting proposals for papers within the described parameters.

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Pseudepigrapha

Karina Martin Hogan
Patrick Pouchelle
Description: The goals of this section include: to provide a forum for scholarly discussion of Jewish and Christian pseudepigrapha; to encourage the broader study of pseudepigrapha for its relevance in understanding early Judaism and Christianity; to facilitate both cross-disciplinary interaction and further integration of the study of pseudepigrapha within biblical studies.

Call for papers: The Pseudepigrapha Section is organizing four sessions for the 2024 Annual Meeting and is accepting proposals for papers in all four sessions. (1) An open session for any critical study of pseudepigrapha and related texts. (2) A continuation of our thematic session on "Neglected and Understudied Pseudepigrapha." This year, we will be focusing on the genre of prophecies and prophetic narratives. (3) A joint session with the Religion and Philosophy in Antiquity Seminar on the topic of Freedom of Choice. Presenters are expected to reflect critically on the history and development of this topic in ancient religious-philosophical traditions and examine how it is applied in Pseudepigrapha. (4) A joint session with the Deuterocanonical and Cognate Literature Section on the theme of Women and Women's Voices in the Apocrypha/Deuterocanonical Literature and Pseudepigrapha. We welcome papers that approach this theme from a variety of methodologies, from historical and literary studies to metacritical studies.

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Psychology and Biblical Studies

Ilona Rashkow
Pieter van der Zwan
Description: The objectives of the Psychology and Biblical Studies Seminar are (i) to provide a forum for developing the future agenda of "psychological criticism" within Biblical Studies; (ii) to assess the significance of these approaches for ongoing Biblical research, exegesis, and interpretation, and (iii) from time to time to to present an historical-critical overview of "psychological" approaches to scripture. As always, we request that reference to the biblical languages be included where relevant.

Call for papers: We invite papers about the psychological or psychoanalytic dimensions of political and other institutional exclusion / inclusion in biblical texts. This is a continuation of our three-year cycle about the psychological dimensions of biblical exclusion/inclusion where we have dealt with emotions and relations respectively in this regard during the past two years. Crucial is that papers need to be explicitly anchored in an accepted psychological theory.

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Q

Giovanni Battista Bazzana
Sara Parks
Description: The Q Section offers a forum for research on the “Sayings Gospel” Q. Since Q provides access to earliest Jesus tradition and to the theology and social history of Jewish Christianity, the Q Section integrates a broad variety of issues and methods. The Q Section website is http://neues-testament.uni-graz.at/de/forschen/internationales-q-projekt/sbl-q-section.

Call for papers: The Q unit is accepting papers on any aspect of the Q sayings material. Literary, historical, text-critical, metacritical, or topical approaches are all welcome. We encourage applications from non-Q scholars who wish to engage with Q’s contents through any of a number of lenses, and welcome explorations of relationships between “Q and” other areas, such as Pauline literature, historical Jesus research, Temple, Torah, scribality, gender, John the Baptist, polemics, rhetoric, apocalypticism, rabbinic Judaism, early Judaism, gospels, and more. The Q Unit aspires to host sessions that are encouraging and affirming to first-time presenters, precarious and early-career scholars, minoritized scholars, and graduate students, along with senior specialists in Q Studies.

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Qumran

Jonathan Ben-Dov
Jutta Jokiranta
Description: The Qumran Section of the SBL provides an equal-opportunity forum for presentation and discussion of views relating to the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Qumran settlement, and the people of that place and of those documents. The Qumran Section has three goals: (1) It provides a forum for scholarly discussion of any aspect of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the material culture of Qumran, and the history, literature, and worldviews of the people associated with them. (2) It encourages new discussions and new approaches in the field of Dead Sea Scrolls studies. (3) It strives for integrating the study of the Dead Sea Scrolls with other fields of biblical and related studies.

Call for papers: In 2024, the unit organizes three sessions. (1) The first is a continuation to last year’s Disclosing Reading Practices workshop session. Selected experts are invited to read a passage of their choosing, translate it, and present their close reading of it. The purpose of the session is to disclose interpretative processes that often remain implicit, to reveal the choices scholars do in their translations, and to invite discussion and interaction on the modes of indulging with the scrolls. The session is by invitation only. (2-3) In addition, we invite paper proposals to two open-call sessions that will address any aspect of the Dead Sea Scrolls and Qumran. We commit ourselves to balance senior and junior voices. In order to maximize opportunities for presenters, scholars should not present more than two years in succession. This restriction does not apply to invited papers.

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Racism, Pedagogy, and Biblical Studies

Raj Nadella
Description: This consultation will focus on strategies for addressing racism in the process of teaching and learning biblical studies. Presentations and discussions will deal with racist assumptions and practices at curricular, institutional, disciplinary, and meta-theoretical levels, as well as with respect to reading or use of specific biblical texts.

Call for papers: For this year's open session, we are inviting papers that focus on issues such as creating an anti-racist syllabus from head to toe (e.g., selecting readings, making course materials affordable, crafting inclusive policies) and navigating institutional racism in the university (e.g., inequitable procedures, hidden curriculum, power dynamics in the classroom)."

Tags: Pedagogical Theory (Learning & Teaching)

Reading, Theory, and the Bible

Peter Sabo
Rhiannon Graybill
Description: The Reading, Theory, and the Bible Section provides a forum to encourage innovative and experimental approaches to biblical studies, to facilitate critical reflection on the role of theory in reading, and to support biblical scholarship informed by cross-disciplinary conversation.

Call for papers: Reading, Theory and the Bible offers a home for innovative, experimental work on the Bible and related texts. We welcome work that explores new approaches and pushes the boundaries of scholarship and conventional hermeneutics. We work on the assumption that traditional questions of provenance, philology, and history are amply accommodated by other groups in the SBL. Critical theory, continental philosophy, and other recent theoretical movements are especially welcome, as are papers that take seriously literature and reading as forms of conversation and criticism. We also encourage innovative presentation. For 2024, we are planning four sessions: Our FIRST SESSION is an open session; we invite papers on any topic. Our SECOND SESSION is a cosponsored session with Latina/o/e and Latin American Biblical Interpretation and others on the impact and influence of the work of the late queer performance theorist José Esteban Muñoz on the study of religion and sexuality. Our THIRD SESSION, cosponsored with AAR's "Religion and Popular Culture," is on Andrew Jacobs' book "Gospel Thrillers." Panelists will be invited for this session. Our FOURTH SESSION is a cosponsored session celebrating the twentieth anniversary of The Journal of Bible and Critical Theory. Panelists will be invited for this session.

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Recovering Female Interpreters of the Bible

Bernon Lee
Joy Schroeder
Description: This unit focuses on the recovery of work by female biblical interpreters before the twentieth century who wrote from various faith and ideological standpoints. These female interpreters will be considered in their cultural and historical contexts, with the intention of analyzing their neglected contributions to the study of biblical literature.

Call for papers: SESSION 1. “PROPHETS, PROPHETIC LITERATURE, AND WOMEN BIBLICAL INTERPRETERS (ca. 100 CE – ca. 1920 CE).” We invite proposals for 20-minute papers on women biblical interpreters active prior to the early twentieth century who dealt with prophets, prophecy, or prophetic literature. Possible topics include women who claimed prophetic authority to interpret the Bible, women who wrote about biblical prophets, or women who commented on prophetic literature in scripture. Examples of women who engaged prophetic biblical literature or claimed prophetic authority to interpret scripture include New Prophecy (Montanist) women; the martyr Perpetua (d. 203); Hildegard of Bingen (1098-1179); Margery Kempe (1373-1438); Nonconformist prophetic women of the English Civil War; Jane Leade (1624-1704); Mother Ann Lee (1736-1784); African-American preacher Zilpha Elaw (1790-1893); and countless others. Though biographical introductions to women thinkers may be helpful, especially when introducing historical figures unfamiliar to audiences, papers should focus primarily on the women’s work as biblical interpreters. SESSION 2: “WOMEN BIBLICAL INTERPRETERS THROUGH THE AGES (ca. 100 CE – ca. 1920)." We invite proposals for 20-minute papers on any topic related to women who interpreted scripture prior to the early twentieth century. Topics can include women who interpreted the Bible through their writing, teaching, preaching, speaking, art, music, or other mediums. Papers may deal with individual women; or may compare several women writing on the same theme or biblical passage; or may deal with some other aspect of women's scriptural interpretation through the ages.

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Redescribing Christian Origins

Jennifer Eyl
Christopher B. Zeichmann
Description: The Seminar contributes to the study of Christian origins by problematizing current consensus views, unexamined assumptions, and categories. It recontextualizes and redescribes key data through comparative analysis. It accounts for (i.e., explains) the production and continued function of cultural artefacts (mainly texts but not entirely) in terms of social theory.

Call for papers: The Redescribing Christian Origins Seminar invites a broad range of submissions that consider the relationship between supremacist ideologies and Christian origins. Potential submissions might interrogate the supremacist rhetoric and ideologies that appear in the texts and traditions of formative Christianity as well as Christians’ reception and redeployment of such rhetoric and ideologies. We welcome papers that center questions of gender and/or sexuality, race and/or ethnicity, supersessionism, empire, dis/ability and all other forms of supremacist discourse. The second seminar, jointly organized with the North American Association for the Study of Religion (NAASR), will feature a retrospective on the legacy of Jonathan Z. Smith and specifically, the influence of Drudgery Divine on the study of early Christianity. First published in 1994, this year marks the 30th anniversary of Drudgery Divine. Invited panelists will offer short reflections on various aspects of Smith’s work and intellectual legacy. This set of reflections will be followed by a larger discussion, in which we warmly encourage audience participation. Our third panel is an open call. We encourage all submissions related to the scholarly redescription of Christian origins. Papers from early career scholars are especially welcome.

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Religion and Philosophy in Antiquity

Athanasios Despotis
Isidoros Katsos
Description: This unit seeks to investigate how Christian, Jewish, and “pagan” intellectuals engaged with the concepts, questions, and writings of ancient philosophy in order to understand better the interconnections of “religion” and “philosophy” in late antiquity and to reassess the usefulness of those categories.

Call for papers: Our seminar is currently accepting proposals for four different sessions. 1. Fresh Perspectives on Early Christianity and Cynicism: This session aims to explore the similarities and differences between imperial Cynicism and early Christian works, focusing on their respective ideas, ethics, and practices. 2. Notions of Freedom: This joint session with the Pseudepigrapha Unit will critically examine the concept of freedom in ancient religious-philosophical traditions, including aspects of freedom of choice and freedom of speech. The panel will explore how these ideas are reflected also in Jewish and Christian pseudepigrapha. Various contexts of freedom, including metaphysical, cultural, ethical, and political aspects, will be discussed. 3. Biblical Inspiration and Ancient Religious Philosophical Discourses: This session, in conjunction with the SBL Unit Biblical Exegesis from Eastern Orthodox Perspectives, will delve into how Hellenistic Jewish and Early Christian authors understood the transmission of divine knowledge, focusing on inspiration, divination (referring also to the role of dreams). 4. Definitions of Superstition: This session will discuss technical terms and concepts used to describe forms of superstition in ancient religious and philosophical discourses.

Tags: Church History and Ecclesiology (Other), Greece and Hellenism (History & Culture), Religio-Historical Approaches (Interpretive Approaches)

Religious Competition in Late Antiquity

Catherine E. Bonesho
Rebecca Stephens Falcasantos
Description: This unit analyzes the competition between diverse socioreligious and philosophical groups of the ancient Mediterranean basin through the development of broadly comparative approaches and methodologies. It delineates the ways in which competitive interaction reshaped cultural and religious landscapes.

Call for papers: This year RCLA will host four sessions: 1. Gender, Power, and Competition: To continue 2023's conversation, we invite papers exploring the intersection of gender, power, and group competition in the ancient Mediterranean and southwest Asia through late antiquity. Topics might include discourses and practices of gender inclusion or exclusion, gender constructions, policing or contesting gender performances, rape culture, and related questions. We particularly encourage papers that engage in metacriticism and other critical reflections of scholarly approaches to these questions. 2. Competing over Antiquity: We invite proposals that focus on modern competitions over facets of religious antiquity (e.g., competing readings and methods of textual interpretation, the evocation of ancient objects, texts, or ideas in modern conflicts or modern competition over ancient artifacts), especially those addressing the methods, goals, and impact of these competitions on the reception and overall understanding of the ancient Mediterranean and southwest Asia. 3. An invited review panel, co-sponsored by Healthcare and Disability in the Ancient World, reviewing Megan Nutzman’s Contested Cures: Identity and Ritual Healing in Roman and Late Antique Palestine (Edinburgh, 2022). 4. Open Call: Our fourth session welcomes proposals on any topic related to religious competition in the ancient Mediterranean basin and late antique southwest Asia between and across all religious traditions, including explorations about religious competition in fictional, historical, and exegetical sources; material objects and art; imperial court contexts; cultural and religious landscapes; and reflections on method and theory. We are particularly keen to review proposals that focus on new approaches or methodologies to study religious competition in Late Antiquity, including Digital Humanities, for example social network analysis or digital text analysis.

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Religious Experience in Antiquity

Reed Carlson
Description: This section investigates the experiential elements of religions from the ancient near east to late antiquity, with a particular interest in examining (1) the relationship between texts and experience, (2) religious practices in the context of ritual, prayer, ecstasy, dreams and visions, 3) the role of embodied experiences (cognitive, neurological, and sensory) in the generation of religious ideas and commitment.

Call for papers: The Religious Experience in Antiquity unit will hold three sessions, one with an open call for papers. (1) We welcome paper proposals for an open session on any topic that investigates the experiential elements of religions from the ancient near east to late antiquity. We have a particular interest in papers that examine the relationship between texts and experience, religious practices (in the context of ritual, prayer, ecstasy, dreams and visions), and the role of embodied experiences (cognitive, neurological, and sensory) in the generation of religious ideas and commitment. In your proposal, we ask that you specify the texts or other material artifacts under discussion and include a clear methodological perspective. (2) Together with the Israelite Prophetic Literature program unit, we are holding a book review session of invited panelists on Anathea E. Portier-Young, The Prophetic Body: Embodiment and Mediation in Biblical Prophetic Literature (Oxford, 2024). (3) Our third session will be made up of invited papers from a forthcoming collected volume on religious experience in antiquity, edited by Reed Carlson, Brigidda E. Bell, and Frederick S. Tappenden, entitled Ominous Times: Anticipating Cataclysm in Early Judaism and Christianity (De Gruyter, 2025).

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Religious World of Late Antiquity

James Redfield
Megan Nutzman
Description: A forum for scholars working comparatively and thematically in the period and regions in which Christianity, Judaism, Manichaeism, and Islam formed within a rich environment of other religious traditions, where norms of authority, belief, practice, and identity were contested and settled.

Call for papers: We will host three thematic panels in 2024: 1. Back from the Dead: Lost Texts, Ideas, Things. We invite abstracts that make a case for “resurrecting” an obscure or cast-aside text (whether an ancient text or a scholarly work); a seemingly useless ancient object; or a modern intellectual paradigm that appears “worn out” or broken beyond repair. Proposals should suggest how their selection can enrich and deepen the study of religion in late antiquity. This will be a lightning panel with 8-minute papers followed by an extended discussion. 2. Theopraxy: Knowing the Gods by Doing. From the distinction between “myth and ritual” to the very concept of “theology,” knowledge often takes priority over practice in thinking about human/divine relationships. Recent studies of late ancient religion challenge this distinction, asking us to consider the means and methods of acquiring, transmitting, and transforming human knowledge of the gods as neither its expression nor its accessory but its very basis. Rather than models in which elite knowledge is diffused to “the people” who perform it, what changes if we take practices such as oracles, dreams, and prophecies, as a common vehicle for knowing the gods, shared by diverse branches of society? 3. Latent Late Antiquity. How does “late antiquity” (whether a period or a cultural construct) figure in our making or understanding of the present? This session will reflect on the questions, concerns, and tensions of contemporary experience that bubble (barely) beneath the surface – that is, in a latent way – of the study of late antiquity. How do these impulses propel or constrain the production and reception of our work on the religious world of late antiquity? We are also cosponsoring an invited review panel for Monika Amsler's The Babylonian Talmud and Late Antique Book Culture (Cambridge, 2023) with the Book History and Biblical Literatures program unit.

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Rhetoric and Early Christianity

Mark D. Given
Nina E. Livesey
Description: This section has historically explored the continuously-evolving field of rhetorical criticism of the New Testament in all its diversity. Marking a slight shift in focus, 'Rhetoric and Early Christianity' will extend RNT's refined critical lens to address a broader spectrum of source material.

Call for papers: The Rhetoric and Early Christianity Section fosters research centered on the arts of persuasion, broadly conceived, as they intersect with the study of Early Christian sources and worlds. We invite proposals for two themed sessions. First, we seek proposals that track, evaluate, or critique the Rhetorical Uses and Reuses of Scripture in Early Christianities. We are especially interested in papers that explore how early Christian writers (whether traditionally rendered orthodox or not) wielded passages that they considered Scripture (both canonical and non-canonical texts) to make arguments about their self-understanding, their communities, and their opponents. We will also consider papers that evaluate how early Christian writers understood and discussed the rhetorical function of Scripture for their argumentation. Second, we seek proposals that explore the Rhetoric of Early Christian Apologetics. The topic of apologetics can be broadly construed and seen within New Testament and later literatures, and among a variety of literary genres. Papers should aim to address the ways in which apologetics took shape, while also providing an assessment of its goals within selected texts. Finally, as usual we invite proposals dealing with other aspects of the intersection of rhetoric and the study of early Christianity for an open session.

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Rhetoric of Religious Antiquity

Donghyun Jeong
Rosemary Canavan
Description: The Rhetoric of Religious Antiquity Seminar provides a forum for collegial work on the Rhetoric of Religious Antiquity Commentary Series, and for the public exploration of facets of sociorhetorical interpretation that promise to contribute to the work of biblical scholars not directly associated with the project.

Call for papers: The Rhetoric of Religious Antiquity Seminar provides a forum for collegial work on the Rhetoric of Religious Antiquity Commentary Series, and for the public exploration of facets of sociorhetorical interpretation that promise to contribute to the work of biblical scholars not directly associated with the project.

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Ritual in the Biblical World

Daniel Belnap
Jade Weimer
Description: The Ritual in the Biblical World Section focuses on the nature, meaning and function of ritual found in textual sources (HB, NT, non-canonical) in the larger context of the material culture of the ancient world, employing insights and methods of the field of ritual theory and enthnography.

Call for papers: The Ritual in the Biblical World section will offer three sessions in the upcoming 2024 annual meeting. 1) The first session will be a joint session with the Bible and Emotion section. We invite proposals that examine the close relationship between emotion and ritual and the ways in which ritual engages with emotion to form, maintain and excise social structures. This session is the first of a series of joint sessions in which the relationship between ritual and emotion as presented in the biblical texts and surrounding Levantine cultures will be explored with a hoped for volume following the conclusion of the series. 2) The second session will also be a joint session with the Religions in Israel and Judah in their West Asian Environment section. In this joint session, we welcome papers that take a practice-based approach to the study of religion in the ancient Levant, with a focus on Israel and Judah noting that new discoveries as well as new emphasis on domestic religion have dramatically changed scholarly histories of Israelite religion and emphasized its diversity and complexity. 3) The third session will be an open session on all parameters of meaning and function of ritual found in textual and iconographic sources in the larger context of the cultures of the ancient world, employing insights and methods from the field of ritual theory.

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Senses, Cultures, and Biblical Worlds

Anne Katrine Gudme
Dominika A. Kurek-Chomycz
Description: This interdisciplinary unit investigates all aspects of sensory perception in the Bible and early Judaism and Christianity, including how various cultures thought about, used, and ascribed meaning to the senses. The unit embraces diverse approaches to the study of the senses, including philological, anthropological, psychological, linguistic, cognitive, literary, and phenomenological methods.

Call for papers: We invite paper proposals for the following three sessions:(1) Making Sense with the Senses. A joint panel with Mind, Society, and Cognition. We invite papers that investigate the interplay between cognition and the senses in biblical texts and in the material culture of the biblical world. For example, how do the senses contribute to refinement of ideas, creation of new knowledge, or development of practices? We welcome papers that apply a combination of cultural and cognitive theories.(2) Gender, Sexuality, and the Senses. A joint panel with Gender, Sexuality, and the Bible. While gender, sexuality, and the senses have been explored separately, we are excited about the potential overlap between the two, as seen in the research of C. Classen, A. Létourneau, and U. Matic. Papers can address any aspect of gender and/or sexuality and the senses in the Bible. We are particularly interested in the intersections of the fields with masculinity studies, the deconstruction of whiteness, or the less studied senses (see further below).(3) Senses and Material Culture. A joint panel with Archaeology of Religion in the Roman World. We invite proposals on the senses and material culture: how and why did material culture — objects, spaces, built environments — evoke the sensory experience of the inhabitants of the ancient world? We also welcome submissions focusing on methodological issues pertaining to the relationship between material objects and sense perception, as well as to researchers’ sensory engagement with ancient material artefacts. For all three joint panels, we welcome attention to less-studied senses, such as taste, smell, touch, sense of time, sense of pain, kinaesthesia (movement), and proprioception (body in space). All proposals should contain a brief description of the data that will be examined, as well as the theories and methods that will be applied in the presentation. We also invite present to consider non-traditional modes of presentation.

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Slavery, Resistance, and Freedom

Chris de Wet
Description: This unit will investigate the intersections between Ancient Near Eastern and Mediterranean slavery and biblical and early rabbinic texts, the diverse forms of resistance to it, and the meaning of freedom in slave-holding societies. Presenters will also examine how Jews and Christians—free, freed, and enslaved—have interpreted biblical texts on slavery and freedom and will propose how to “read for freedom.”

Call for papers: This program unit will have two sessions for this call for papers. The first is an open call for proposals that address any aspect of enslavement, resistance, and freedom from enslavement in the Bible and Ancient Near East; New Testament; early Christian history; early rabbinic literature; and ancient Mediterranean history; or later interpretations of biblical, rabbinic, or other classical texts. We also welcome comparative papers, e.g., on the Bible and the Qur’an or on early Christianity and contemporary slavery, or papers on the legacies of ancient slavery for trans-Atlantic slavery. We encourage papers that show the complex experience of slavery by taking into account such various dimensions as ethnicity, age, gender, or disability, as well as relationships among slavery, religion, and specific economies. Papers might also address the theological use of slavery as a metaphor and its consequences for children and people of various ethnicities in the ancient world. Time periods addressed in any proposal may be ancient, contemporary, or any time in between. The second is a pre-arranged book panel engaging with Candida Moss's study, God's Ghostwriters: Enslaved Christians and the Making of the Bible (2024).

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Social History of Formative Christianity and Judaism

Gil P. Klein
Karen B. Stern
Description: This section is dedicated to a study of formative Christianity and formative Judaism utilizing a broad methodological perspective that places an emphasis on interpreting the data within specific social, cultural, and linguistic contexts. We function as a clearinghouse for developments in social historical methodology and perspectives for our period. (previously Social History of Early Christianity)

Call for papers: The program unit will sponsor two sessions in 2024, each of which will include invited participants. The first unit will co-sponsor a book panel on Rafael Neis' book, When a Human Gives Birth to a Raven: Rabbis and the Reproduction of Species (UCPress 2023). The program unit will also sponsor a second session, an invited round table that considers “Voluntary Associations and Religion.” Our goal for the session is to consider voluntary associations and their interactivity, as broadly described, in order to spark creative conversation between experts working across multiple disciplines, using different genres of evidence (i.e. literary, architectural, papyrological, archaeological, epigraphic), across various regions (stretching from the eastern Mediterranean through other parts of the Greek and Roman worlds, Syria, and Mesopotamia, or North Africa), as well as in multiple languages. After a series of short introductory presentations that are artifact-centered, we will invite extended conversation among the invited participants and the audience.

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Social Sciences and the Interpretation of the Hebrew Scriptures

Eric X. Jarrard
Rosanne Liebermann
Description: This quintessentially interdisciplinary unit combines the skills that are unique to classic biblical scholarship with exciting and vibrant conversations and developments from disciplines in the social sciences, including anthropology, sociology, psychology, and political science.

Call for papers: The Social Sciences and the Interpretation of the Hebrew Scriptures will hold three sessions this year. (1) The first—jointly held with the Social Scientific Criticism of the New Testament unit—seeks papers addressing the current state of the field with the goal of evaluating what might be distinctive about biblical studies-oriented approaches to the social sciences and vice versa. We are especially interested in research in either/both testament(s) and/or related literature that critically engages with recent methods, models, and theories from the social-scientific disciplines as classically defined—anthropology, political science, psychology, sociology—and/or emerging subfields. (2) A second session is an invited panel with new research that engages Tim Hogue's new book The Ten Commandments: Monuments of Memory, Belief, and Interpretation (Cambridge University Press, 2023). (3) Our third session is open. We invite all proposals that incorporate methods and theories from the social sciences and apply them to issues related to the Hebrew scriptures.

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Social Scientific Criticism of the New Testament

Erin Roberts
Tony Keddie
Description: The Social Scientific Criticism of the New Testament Section program encourages the self-conscious employment of recognized models, methods, or theories of the social sciences in order to contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of the texts and social world of the New Testament.

Call for papers: The SSCNT unit is pleased to offer four sessions this year: 1. Open session. We enthusiastically seek proposals on any aspect of the social-scientific study of the New Testament and related literature. We especially encourage papers that engage with feminist, queer, decolonizing, and/or other critical reevaluations of classical theories and models. 2. “Intersectionality and Urban Space in Common Era Antiquity” (collaboration with Space, Place, and Lived Experience in Antiquity). We invite papers to consider ways that shared urban spaces such as marketplaces, crossroads, streets, cemeteries, shops, cauponae, insulae, domus, associations, etc. furnished places for such things as the generation of social contacts, differing forms of visibility, displays of identity, the exchange of ideas, the dynamic construction of social and religious identities, etc., and ways in which such generation, possibilities, displays, and exchanges shaped the practices, experiences, and imagination of urban spaces. 3. For a joint session with the Social Sciences and the Interpretation of the Hebrew Scriptures unit, we seek papers addressing the current state of the field with the goal of evaluating what might be distinctive about biblical studies-oriented approaches to the social sciences and vice versa. We are especially interested in research in either/both testament(s) and/or related literature that critically engages with recent methods, models, and theories from the social-scientific disciplines as classically defined—anthropology, political science, psychology, sociology—and/or emerging subfields. 4. An invited panel on “Jewish and Christian Utopian Communities of the Hellenistic-Roman Era” (collaboration with Utopian Studies). *Please state which of the first three sessions your proposal is for.

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Society for Ancient Mediterranean Religions

Jacob A. Latham
Zsuzsanna Varhelyi
Description: This new group is devoted to the study of the religions of the ancient Mediterranean basin broadly conceived. The Society for Ancient Mediterranean Religions aims to focus particular attention on the polytheistic religious traditions of Greece, Rome and the Near East, their interaction with each other, and with the monotheistic religious traditions of the region. Please visit out website (www.samreligions.org) for further information.

Call for papers: This new group is devoted to the study of the religions of the ancient Mediterranean basin broadly conceived. The Society for Ancient Mediterranean Religions aims to focus particular attention on the polytheistic religious traditions of Greece, Rome and the Near East, their interaction with each other, and with the monotheistic religious traditions of the region. Please visit out website (www.samreligions.org) for further information.

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Society for Comparative Research on Iconic and Performative Texts

James W. Watts
Description: The Society for Comparative Research on Iconic and Performative Texts (SCRIPT) was founded in 2010 to encourage new scholarship on iconic and performative texts. Our goal is to foster academic discourse about the social functions of books and texts that exceed their semantic meaning and interpretation, such as their display as cultural artifacts, their ritual use in religious and political ceremonies, their performance by recitation and theater, and their depiction in art. SCRIPT sponsors programming at existing regional and international scholarly meetings and at colleges and universities. We welcome new members and ideas for programs and venues to host them. For further information, see http://script-site.net/.

Call for papers: The Society for Comparative Research on Iconic and Performative Texts (SCRIPT) was founded in 2010 to encourage new scholarship on iconic and performative texts. Our goal is to foster academic discourse about the social functions of books and texts that exceed their semantic meaning and interpretation, such as their display as cultural artifacts, their ritual use in religious and political ceremonies, their performance by recitation and theater, and their depiction in art. SCRIPT sponsors programming at existing regional and international scholarly meetings and at colleges and universities. We welcome new members and ideas for programs and venues to host them. For further information, see http://script-site.net/.

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Society for the Arts in Religious and Theological Studies (SARTS)

Cindi Beth Johnson
Jennifer Awes Freeman
Description: The Society was organized to provide a forum for scholars and artists interested in the intersections between theology, religion, and the arts, to share thoughts, challenge ideas, strategize approaches in the classroom, and to advance the discipline in theological and religious studies curricula. The goal of the Society is to attract consistent participation of a core group of artists and scholars of theology and religion in order to have dialogue about the theological and religious meaning of the arts, and the artistic/aesthetic dimension of theological and religious inquiry.

Call for papers: The Society was organized to provide a forum for scholars and artists interested in the intersections between theology, religion, and the arts, to share thoughts, challenge ideas, strategize approaches in the classroom, and to advance the discipline in theological and religious studies curricula. The goal of the Society is to attract consistent participation of a core group of artists and scholars of theology and religion in order to have dialogue about the theological and religious meaning of the arts, and the artistic/aesthetic dimension of theological and religious inquiry.

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Space, Place, and Lived Experience in Antiquity

Harry O. Maier
Sarah F. Porter
Description: This unit seeks to engage diverse methodological and theoretical perspectives on social practices in antiquity as mediated through place or larger spatial frameworks. Presentations exploring the creation, use, or understanding of space or place through material remains and/or texts are welcome.

Call for papers: We are organizing three panels this year. 1. An open call: successful papers will have a clearly defined theoretical framework and direct relationship to lived experience in antiquity. 2. Spaces of catastrophe, ruin, and ruination. How do our sources understand spaces of catastrophe, ruin, and ruination? And how do we scholars understand them? We anticipate proposals concerning large-scale, public catastrophes (e.g., earthquakes, war, famine, etc.) but we also welcome proposals on a more domestic, intimate, private scale (e.g., familial trauma, pregnancy loss, financial ruin, etc.). Theoretical frameworks informed by gender, trauma, occupation, and war are especially sought. 3. A joint session with The Social Scientific Criticism of the New Testament dedicated to the theme of intersectionality and urban space in Common Era Antiquity. The session will be a combination of invited contributions as well as papers accepted for presentation. We invite proposals for papers that consider ways in which shared urban spaces such as marketplaces, crossroads, streets, cemeteries, shops, cauponae, insulae, domus, associations, etc. furnished places for, e.g., the generation of social contacts, differing forms of visibility, displays of identity, the exchange of ideas, the dynamic construction of social and religious identities, etc., and ways in which such such generation, possibilities, displays, and exchanges shaped the practices, experiences, and imagination of urban spaces.

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Synoptic Gospels

Michael Whitenton
Abraham Smith
Description: The Synoptic Gospels as a unit plays an important role in modern scholarship, including, but not limited to, generating debate about the relationships among the gospels. This section provides a forum for the discussion of papers from a variety of theoretical perspectives and critical methods on the content and formation of the Synoptic Gospels and what they reveal about the contexts of their composition.

Call for papers: The Synoptic Gospels section invites proposals for two open sessions on the content or formation of any of the Synoptic Gospels. We especially welcome papers that address the relationship between two or more Gospels or that deal with themes touching on multiple Gospels. In addition, we will hold an invited joint book review panel (with the Matthew Section) on Alan Culpepper’s Matthew: A Commentary (New Testament Library; WJK Press 2022). We are also co-sponsoring a book review panel with the Corpus Hellenisticum Novi Testamenti Section on Simon Gathercole’s The Gospel and the Gospels: Christian Proclamation and Early Jesus Books (Eerdmans 2022).

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Syriac Studies

Kristian Heal
Susan Ashbrook Harvey
Ute Possekel
Description: Syriac Studies invites papers on the Syriac versions of the Bible, on the interpretation and reception of biblical material in Syriac traditions, and on the literature and history of Syriac-speaking Christian communities and their interaction with neighbouring cultures (e.g., Greek, Armenian, Arabic) and religions (e.g., Jews, Manichaeans, Zoroastrians).

Call for papers: For the 2024 Annual Meeting, we invite proposals for one open session for which papers on any aspect of Syriac Studies are welcome, and three thematic sessions.

In our session on Syriac Chronicles: Identity and Community Formation we hope to address questions such as: How did one tell a history, one’s own or that of others? What should be remembered, how and why? What qualities do the literary features of Syriac chronicles add to the narrative content they offer?

A second thematic panel, on Genre and Performance in late antique Syriac Christianity, invites scholars to ask: How and what does performance contribute to our understanding of different categories of Syriac literature? Whom did performance include or exclude, with what impact on the literary genre and its content? What are the implications for the literary, social and cultural issues of late antique Christianity more broadly?

Our third thematic session, co-sponsored by the program unit on Jewish Christianity, invites proposals on Manichaeans: Real and Imagined. Here we hope also to raise broader questions regarding the location of Manichaeism within and beyond the boundaries of Syriac Studies, and in conversation with adjacent fields, including heresiology, late antique Judaism, and liturgy.

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Teaching Biblical Studies in an Undergraduate Liberal Arts Context

Jocelyn McWhirter
Dr. Sylvie Raquel
Description: This unit addresses the unique opportunities and challenges of teaching biblical studies in undergraduate liberal arts institutions. Sessions promote the sharing and evaluation of pedagogical objectives, strategies, and assessment tools, cultivate professional networks, and lead to published results.

Call for papers: SESSION 1: CONSTRUCTIVE USE OF AI. In 2022, Chat GPT and other processing tools driven by AI technology made their way into higher education. Professors received fully AI-generated assignments and were not prepared to respond to what they considered misapplication. The reality is that AI is infiltrating most aspects of the modern world. Professors must learn to help their students use AI processing tools properly. They can also learn to use them as pedagogical tools. The TBSULAC session welcomes papers on pedagogical approaches and proven strategies for teaching the Bible using AI. SESSION 2: BUILDING COMMUNITY IN PHYSICAL AND VIRTUAL CLASSROOMS. After the Covid pandemic, students and educators struggled to reintegrate into a regular classroom setting. Due to the development of new technology, many opted for virtual learning. However, online learning can lead to feelings of isolation and disconnection. Indeed, higher education does not just provide knowledge but also a creative and collaborative learning environment. This session welcomes papers on building communities in physical and virtual classrooms, including communication, motivation, engagement, participation, accountability, collaboration, mentoring, support, and more.

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Textual Criticism of the Hebrew Bible

Mika Pajunen
Daniel Olariu
Description: The Textual Criticism of the Hebrew Bible section concerns itself with the origin and nature of all forms of the biblical text. The discipline involves the comparison of data from the various witnesses to the biblical text (Masoretic text, Septuagint, Dead Sea Scrolls, etc.), and the evaluation of that data.

Call for papers: It is widely recognized that during the transmission process of the Hebrew-Aramaic text, both scribes and translators introduced exegetical nuances through the omission, addition, and/or subtraction of elements from their source texts. These maneuvers have given rise to various forms of exegesis, including linguistic, contextual, and/or theological exegesis. For the 2024 SBL Annual Meeting, the TCHB unit welcomes scholars to submit proposals focused on the theme “Exegesis Across Textual Traditions.” The unit will host three sessions: (1) An open-call session where we welcome proposals dealing with the origin and nature of the biblical text. Preference will be given to papers that address exegetical aspects introduced in different textual traditions. (2) A partly open-call and partly invited session that welcomes papers focusing on theological exegesis across textual traditions. (3) A joint, open-call session with the Aramaic Studies unit exploring theological-exegetical elements in Targumic literature. The program unit particularly encourages applications from younger scholars and underrepresented groups. As always, the sole criterion for the acceptance of papers will be their scholarly quality.

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Textual Criticism of the Historical Books

Jonathan Robker
Sarah Yardney
Description: This unit aims at enhancing cooperation and exchange of ideas between scholars working on the text of Samuel and Kings in various languages. (At the present, there is activity in editorial projects on critical editions of the Septuagint text, various projects on the daughter versions of the Septuagint, and projects around the Hebrew text aiming at commentaries,text-editions, or monographs on text-history.) Such cooperation is necessary, due to the very complicated nature of the textual history of these books, and promises good results, as it is the advantage of all parties to be informed of the progress of work by their colleagues.

Call for papers: The Program Unit “Textual Criticism of the Historical Books” covers the breadth of text-critical and text-historical research on the Historical Books in their various textual traditions. We particularly welcome papers that feature an intersection between textual criticism and other methodological approaches. All proposals must name the investigated biblical passages, describe the ancient sources, the chosen methodology, and explain how the proposal is linked with current text-critical research. We explicitly encourage submissions from students, early career researchers, women, and persons from underrepresented or traditionally marginalized backgrounds in the discipline. For the 2024 Annual Meeting, we are planning three sessions. Submissions are welcome for two general sessions on any text-critical topic relevant to the Historical Books. Papers may focus on one or several versions, including relevant data from medieval Hebrew manuscripts. In addition to text-critical papers in the strict sense, these sessions are open to papers with a focus on the intersection of textual criticism with literary, redaction, or narrative criticism, as well as with linguistics, such as lexicography and syntax. Papers in these related areas and cognate fields should either take advantage of text-critical findings or demonstrate the useful application of their approaches to textual criticism generally or specifically. Joint papers featuring cooperation between a textual critic and a specialist in another approach are especially welcome. We welcome presentations considering a particular version or versions, critical edition projects, or digital approaches to and resources for text-critical work. Finally, we are planning a thematic session on the Hexapla and materials relating to the Hexapla. Proposals for any topics that fit under this rubric will be considered.

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The Bible and Animal Studies

Sébastien Doane
Suzanna Millar
Description: Using animal studies and other critical theories (e.g., posthumanism, decolonial theory), this unit examines representations of (nonhuman) animals in biblical texts/contexts and related constructions of humanness and animality. We explore new ways of reading that critique and move beyond binaries like human-animal and nature-culture, aiming for interpretive practice supporting multi-species flourishing. Though our primary focus is the Bible, we aim to enrich biblical interpretation through dialogue with other scriptures and often-marginalized oral traditions of subjugated or colonized peoples.

Call for papers: The Bible and Animal Studies research unit will host four sessions. We welcome proposals for papers to sessions 1, 2, and 4. (1) An OPEN SESSION in which contributors use any aspect of animal studies to interrogate and explore biblical (and biblical-adjacent) texts. (2) A session on ANIMALITY AND GENDER, in which contributors consider questions like: how are women and nonhuman animals conceptualised and treated in interconnected ways? Does the breakdown of the male-female binary undertaken by queer theorists have implications for the human-animal binary? How do animals’ own gender relations manifest in biblical texts? (3) A BOOK PANEL on Arthur Walker-Jones and Suzanna Millar (eds.), Exploring Animal Hermeneutics (SBL 2024) (invited speakers only). (4) A JOINT SESSION with “Ecological Hermeneutics”. Half the session will feature an invited book panel on Dong Hyeon Jeong, Embracing the Nonhuman in the Gospel of Mark (SBL 2023). The other half will contain proposed papers which engage with the themes of this book, particularly focussing on the agency/actancy of animals and inanimate beings. What might this term “agency” mean for the different members of creation: humans, animals, insects, non-sentient beings, etc.; to what extent can non-sentient entities have agency (e.g., Psalm 148:8-10)?

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The Enoch Seminar

Joshua Scott
Description: The Enoch Seminar is an academic group of international specialists in Second Temple Judaism (Jewish, Christian, and Islamic Origins), who share the results of their research in the field and meet to discuss topics of common interest. The Enoch Seminar was founded in 2001 at the initiative of Gabriele Boccaccini, University of Michigan. Members of the Enoch Seminar are university professors and specialists in Second Temple Judaism, Christian Origins, and early Islam.

Call for papers: The Enoch Seminar is an academic group of international specialists in Second Temple Judaism (Jewish, Christian, and Islamic Origins), who share the results of their research in the field and meet to discuss topics of common interest. The Enoch Seminar was founded in 2001 at the initiative of Gabriele Boccaccini, University of Michigan. Members of the Enoch Seminar are university professors and specialists in Second Temple Judaism, Christian Origins, and early Islam.

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The Forum on Missional Hermeneutics

John R. Franke
Michael Barram
Description: The Forum on Missional Hermeneutics fosters interdisciplinary scholarship at the intersection of critical biblical interpretation, contextual theology, and mission studies. The Forum gives special attention to the concepts and practices of Christian mission in their historical, postmodern, and postcolonial manifestations and to their significance for the reception, interpretation, and usage of biblical texts in a variety of social, cultural, ethical, theological, and religious contexts.

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The Historical Paul

Brigidda Bell
Benjamin L. White
Description: This program unit aims to reinvigorate the study of Paul as a historical figure. Through attention to biographical detail and social context, careful consideration of historical method, and engagement with a diverse range of comparanda, it seeks to describe him as a contextually plausible social actor.

Call for papers: The Historical Paul unit welcomes proposals for the following session: (1) an open session with papers that address any aspect of the unit's objective of seeking to describe Paul as a contextually plausible social actor, including papers on Paul that pay attention to biographical detail and social context, offer careful consideration of historical method, and engage a diverse range of comparanda. The unit will also host three invited sessions: (2) a session that considers the role that Acts plays in our construction of the historical Paul given new and divergent trends in Acts research; (3) a book review panel on Isaac Soon's book A Disabled Apostle: Impairment and Disability in the Letters of Paul (OUP, 2023) co-sponsored with the Healthcare and Disability unit and the Pauline Epistles unit; (4) a session on "epistolary leadership" that examines how various ancient figures exhibited transformational leadership through their letter-writing and how this sheds light on the historical Paul.

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Theological Interpretation of Scripture

Amy Peeler
Bo H. Lim
Description: This seminar explores the hermeneutical innovations and theological implications that ensue when critical biblical interpretation is conducted within diverse confessional communities, especially, but not only, those of the Christian tradition. It is this complex exploration itself that amounts to what may be called theological interpretation, an approach to biblical interpretation that gives particular attention to (1) the relationship between theological and other approaches to biblical studies, including historical criticism; (2) the significance and the challenges of expanding the contexts of biblical interpretation to include canon, creed, community, and constructive theology; (3) the relationship between biblical studies and systematic theology, practical theology, and philosophical theology; (4) the impact of theological convictions and religious practices (both traditional and contemporary) on biblical interpretation, and of theological interpretation on religious and academic communities; and (5) the actual theological interpretation of biblical texts. (Formerly Theological Hermeneutics of Christian Scripture)

Call for papers: The Theological Interpretation of Scripture will sponsor the following three sessions at the 2024 annual meeting: 1) An invited panel session on the topic of the Past, Present, and Future of Theological Interpretation on the 25th Anniversary of the Publication of Steve Fowl's Engaging Scripture (Blackwell, 1998); 2) An invited panel reviewing the New Testament in Color Commentary (IVPAcademic, 2024); 3) A session on Augustine as Theological Interpreter of Scripture in which we will be accepting papers. Papers may explore Augustine's own exegetical practice with particular biblical texts, his hermeneutical and theological methods, the role of exegesis in the construction of his theology, and how Augustine's use of the Bible might impact contemporary understandings of Scripture.

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Theology of the Hebrew Scriptures

David Frankel
Paul K.-K. Cho
Description: The purpose of the Theology of Hebrew Scriptures section is to promote sustained reflection, dialogue, and research on the various theological ideas, themes, and motifs that are found throughout the Hebrew Bible. It seeks to facilitate Jewish-Christian dialogue, creating a venue where Jewish and Christian interpreters can reflect together on a theological interpretation of the Hebrew Scriptures.

Call for papers: The Theology of the Hebrew Scriptures section will host four sessions, one co-sponsored with the Philology in Hebrew Studies unit. (1) For the first session, we will invite speakers for a panel discussion of Marc Brettler and Amy-Jill Levine’s book, The Bible With and Without Jesus (2020). (2) The second session, co-sponsored with the Philology in Hebrew Studies unit, will be a panel of invited and submitted papers on the question “What does the term ‘theology’ mean in the academic study of the Hebrew Bible?” Although this term is used frequently in our field, it means different things to different scholars—often leading to confusion. For instance, while some use it with reference to the content of primary texts, others use it with reference to a method or approach. While some regard it as an ideal to be achieved, others regard it as a pitfall to be avoided. In addition to a set of invited panelists, we welcome submissions that critically investigate the meaning(s) of this term and make an argument for its possibilities or limits in the study of the Hebrew Bible. (Please submit paper proposals to the Philology in Hebrew Bible unit.) (3) For the third session, we invite paper proposals that explore the topic “theological responses to trauma,” with particular emphasis on lament. Consider, for example, the laments of Jeremiah, Lamentations, Job, and the Psalms as individual and/or collective responses to trauma. How do they speak for individuals or the group? What role does bearing witness, gender, violent language, (the impossibility of) narrative, collective memory, and other aspects of trauma play in the formation of theological responses to trauma in the Hebrew Scriptures? Papers that engage specific texts, trauma theory, and lament are especially welcome. (4) For the fourth session, we invite proposals on any theme relevant to the purpose of the Theology of the Hebrew Scriptures unit.

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Theta Alpha Kappa

Elizabeth Rae Coody
Eric F. Mason
Description: Theta Alpha Kappa is the national honor society for religious studies and theology and is a member of the Association of College Honor Societies. Founded in 1976 at Manhattan College, the society has chartered over 350 chapters in institutions ranging from small religiously affiliated colleges and seminaries to large public research universities. Theta Alpha Kappa exists to encourage, recognize, and promote student excellence in the academic study of religion and theology through its local chapters, multiple scholarship opportunities offered by the national organization, publication of student articles in Journal of Theta Alpha Kappa, and other national programs. For more information, please see www.ThetaAlphaKappa.org or contact us at theta_alpha_kappa_inquiries@ThetaAlphaKappa.org.

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Transmission of Traditions in the Second Temple Period

Anja Klein
Dionisio Candido
Description: The unit will concentrate on the transmission of traditions particularly in the Second Temple period. It will focus on both transmission processes themselves and the practical mechanics employed in such processes. While literary evidence is central to this investigation, physical manuscripts, other material artefacts, iconography, and traces of oral transmission processes will be factored into the discussion whenever possible. In the textual evidence particular emphasis will be placed on texts in which two or more empirically attested versions of the same story (or book) differ considerably. All such cases in the different available corpora from the general time period will be taken into consideration.

Call for papers: The unit will host two sessions in 2024 , one open session and a joint session with the Book of Deuteronomy Section. (1) The first session is open for all proposals directly related to the agenda. We hope that the proposed papers would focus on processes of transmitting traditions in the Second Temple period and the practical mechanics employed in such processes. (2) An Open Joint Session with the Book of Deuteronomy Section. Here we welcome papers that explore the transmission of traditions specifically connected to Deuteronomy in Second Temple and Early Judaism(s). We understand transmission broadly, encouraging questions regarding the material, iconographic, theological, textual and/or historical transmission of Deuteronomy.

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Ugaritic Studies and Northwest Semitic Epigraphy

Christine Neal Thomas
Jimmy Daccache
Description: Our purpose is to foster the academic study of ancient Ugarit, the associated cuneiform alphabetic texts, and ancient Northwest Semitic epigraphic texts, especially in order to explore areas of commonality between these fields of study and Biblical literature.

Call for papers: The Ugaritic Studies and Northwest Semitic Epigraphy section plans to hold in 2024 two open, non-thematic sessions consisting of papers on any topic relevant to Ugaritic and Northwest Semitic studies.

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Use, Influence, and Impact of the Bible

Andrew Mein
Rebecca Esterson
Description: This program unit explores how the Bible has been used and/or influential in the way it has been received in society. The focus is upon the reception of the text in contexts other than a narrow critical-academic one.

Call for papers: For 2024 are planning a review session on The Nordic Bible, edited by Marianne Bjelland Kartzow, Kasper Bro Larsen, and Outi Lehtipuu (De Gruyter, 2023). For our open call, we invite papers on subjects relating to “the Bible and the body.” As usual we will also have an open session: proposals are welcome on any aspect of the Bible's reception history. Our preference is for papers that do not focus on the narrower history of scholarship, but explore wider aspects of the Bible's impact on religions, society and culture, art, literature and music.

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Utopian Studies

Debra S. Ballentine
Jonathan Kaplan
Description: The Utopian Studies consultation provides a forum in which (1) to foster a sustained and focused conversation about the intersection of the fields of utopian studies and biblical studies and (2) to examine the applicability of methodological and theoretical insights from utopian studies for biblical studies.

Call for papers: Utopian Studies is planning on holding three sessions at the 2024 Annual Meeting. Our first session will be an invited panel discussion co-sponsored with the Social Scientific Criticism of the New Testament Unit and will focus on the theme “Jewish and Christian Utopian Communities of the Hellenistic-Roman Era.” Our second session will be an open session co-sponsored with the Latina/o/e and Latin American biblical interpretation group; Islands and Islander Hermeneutics; Apocalypse of John in Ancient and Modern Contexts, Contextual Hermeneutics; Reading, Theory, and the Bible; and Metacriticism. This session will focus on the impact and influence of the work of the late queer performance theorist José Esteban Muñoz on the study of religion and sexuality, especially since 2024 is the 25th anniversary of the publication of Disidentifications. This session welcomes attention to any facet of Muñoz’s work. In biblical studies, we are particularly interested in the intersections of his thought with latinidades, gender, sexuality, island hermeneutics, the apocalypse, and the utopian. For our third session, we have an open call for proposals that address texts, issues, and imagery often treated as exemplars of utopia within Biblical Studies. We welcome papers from across the breadth of literatures, art, and material culture that SBL encompasses, and we aim to incorporate papers using a variety of methodological approaches. We are particularly interested in proposals addressing the topics of “ritual space,” “human-divine interactions,” or “physical manifestations/transformations” in ancient (Israelite, Jewish, or Christian) literature. Papers should attend to theoretical issues of Utopian Studies. Scholars at all levels are encouraged to submit.

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Violence and Representations of Violence in Antiquity

Jennifer Barry
Zsuzsanna Varhelyi
Description: This section promotes a robust discussion of violence and its representations in the ancient world. Papers utilize a variety of approaches and theoretical tools to consider what constitutes violence, seeking to advance knowledge about power and its effects in antiquity while also providing analogical materials for thinking about contemporary manifestations of religiously inflected violence.

Call for papers: Our section will be hosting two panels this year, one of which is an open call. The first is an invited panel on gender violence. The second panel, Revisiting Religious Violence is open call and is co-sponsored with Religious World of Late Antiquity. Amidst the expanding landscape of studying religious violence in antiquity and its palpable influence on our contemporary world, this co-sponsored panel extends an invitation for papers that delve into the evolution of this field in recent decades. As scholars grapple with the complexities of religious violence in both historical contexts and its enduring impact on our daily realities, we plan to seek contributions that reflect on the development of the study of religious violence. Moreover, we aim to explore new potential trajectories for contemplating and understanding the category of religious violence in the past. Authors will be encouraged to submit papers that critically examine the trends, methodologies, and key advancements in the study of religious violence, shedding light on how our understanding has evolved over time. Equally, we invite innovative perspectives that envision fresh trajectories for thinking with and through the concept of religious violence. This panel serves as a platform to engage with the dynamic interplay between historical research and the pressing realities of contemporary religious violence.

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Vulgate and Latin Bible

Prof. Dr. Michael Fieger
Reinhart Ceulemans
Description: This program unit is devoted to research on the Latin Bible in general and on the Vulgate and Old Latin tradition in particular. The unit covers a broad range of topics, from textual history of the Latin Bible to translation studies, reception studies, and patristics, as well as to modern interpretative-exegetical and theological disciplines that spring from the Latin Biblical tradition. It is the unit's explicit goal to be open to scholars from adjacent fields who occasionally deal with (aspects of) the Vulgate and the Latin Bible in their own research.

Call for papers: The Vulgate and Latin Bible program unit is soliciting papers for the 2024 San Diego Annual Meeting. We invite proposals for twenty-minute papers on any aspect of the Latin Bible. Proposals of max. 350 words should be submitted through the SBL Annual Meeting website. Please direct any queries to the unit chairs. Scholars from adjacent fields who occasionally deal with (aspects of) the Vulgate and the Latin Bible in their own research or in their work on other versions (Hebrew, Greek etc.) are encouraged to propose papers.

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Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in Theology and Religion

Sarah Farmer
Gina Robinson
Description: The Wabash Center encourages excellent teaching in departments of religion and theological schools through careful attention to the issues that every faculty member faces including course design, assessment, student learning goals, understanding the institutional context and the broader purposes of teaching. We offer programs at the SBL Annual Meeting as well as workshops, colloquies, and conferences which are organized throughout the year. Fully funded by Lilly Endowment Inc. and located on the Wabash College campus in Crawfordsville, Indiana, we also offer grants for institutions or individuals who wish to propose projects or research relating to teaching and learning. Our consultants program can facilitate on-site faculty conversations about pedagogical issues through a brief application process available online. Teaching and learning resources (both books and those available through the Internet) are also available through our website. See our website for a full listing of programs, grant deadlines, and resources: www.wabashcenter.wabash.edu.

Call for papers: The Wabash Center encourages excellent teaching in departments of religion and theological schools through careful attention to the issues that every faculty member faces including course design, assessment, student learning goals, understanding the institutional context and the broader purposes of teaching. We offer programs at the SBL Annual Meeting as well as workshops, colloquies, and conferences which are organized throughout the year. Fully funded by Lilly Endowment Inc. and located on the Wabash College campus in Crawfordsville, Indiana, we also offer grants for institutions or individuals who wish to propose projects or research relating to teaching and learning. Our consultants program can facilitate on-site faculty conversations about pedagogical issues through a brief application process available online. Teaching and learning resources (both books and those available through the Internet) are also available through our website. See our website for a full listing of programs, grant deadlines, and resources: www.wabashcenter.wabash.edu.

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Westar Institute

David Galston
Description: Westar Institute — home of the Jesus Seminar — is dedicated to fostering and communicating the results of cutting-edge scholarship on the history and evolution of the Christian tradition, thereby raising the level of public discourse about questions that matter in society and culture.

Call for papers: Papers must be submitted to Westar Seminars. There is no general call for papers in the SBL context. When Westar Seminars meet at the SBL, the Seminar in question will determine papers and discussion topics. If you are a scholar interested in Westar seminars, then you can join Westar as a Scholar and participate. See www.westarinstitute.org.

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Wisdom and Apocalypticism

Emma Wasserman
Description: We support work on Jewish & Christian sapiential & apocalyptic texts, ideas, and their interplay, committed to inquiry into both production & circulation and to grounding analysis in social-historical locations, as relates to knowledge production, economy, gender & sexuality, and race & ethnicity.

Call for papers: The Wisdom and Apocalypticism group invites proposals broadly for work on either (or both) of these topics. In addition, for 2024, we especially invite papers in the following two areas: 1) cognitive science and the study of apocalypticism and/or sapiential or wisdom traditions; and 2) following up our panels for 2022 and 2023, also on issues of race and apocalypticism.

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Wisdom in Israelite and Cognate Traditions

Bernd U. Schipper
Mark Sneed
Description: The Wisdom Section seeks to provide a forum for the exploration of new ideas in the study of Israelite and cognate conceptions of wisdom, focusing on wisdom in the Hebrew Bible and Deuterocanon along with related literature from elsewhere in the ancient Near East.

Call for papers: The Wisdom Section seeks to provide a forum for the exploration of new ideas in the study of Israelite and cognate conceptions of wisdom, focusing on wisdom in the Hebrew Bible and Deuterocanon along with related literature from elsewhere in the ancient Near East. Paper proposals related to this topic are invited for two open sessions. This section will also host an invited session on writing commentaries on Qoheleth (Ecclesiastes).

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Womanist Interpretation

Renita Weems
Mitzi J. Smith
Description: Womanist Interpretation is a unit that provides a space where black women who identify as womanist biblical scholars and graduate students present and receive generative affirming feedback on their intellectual work and respectful sustained critical dialogue with other womanist scholars/ship, students, and SBL units. It is a think tank for womanist epistemologies engaged in the intersectional political work of interpretation with a teleological goal of justice. As a mentoring space, it increases our presence and impact while facilitating hope, stamina, and longevity in the academy.

Call for papers: SESSION ONE is open; we especially invite womanist interpretation submissions that focus on reproductive justice, sexuality, the unsheltered, or ecological justice. Womanist co-conspirators are welcome to submit proposals. SESSION TWO is an invited panel on womanist interpretation and immigration or migration. SESSION THREE is an invited panel on womanist interpretation and public discourse. SESSION FOUR “K-Pop & Hip Hop” is open and invited. It is Co-sponsored with the Korean Biblical Colloquium. We seek papers that discuss what and how Korean and womanist biblical scholars can learn from one another, incorporating the language of K-Pop and Hip Hop.

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Writing/Reading Jeremiah

C. L. Crouch
Description: The Writing/Reading Jeremiah group invites new readings and constructions of meaning with the book of Jeremiah "this side" of historicist paradigms and postmodernism. We welcome all strategies of reading Jeremiah that seek to reconfigure, redeploy, and move beyond conventional readings of Jeremiah. Our manifesto: not by compositional history alone, nor biographical portrayal alone, nor their accompanying theological superstructures; rather, we seek interpretation from new spaces opened for reading Jeremiah by the postmodern turn.

Call for papers: The Writing/Reading Jeremiah group facilitates new readings and constructions of meaning with the book of Jeremiah. We welcome all strategies of reading Jeremiah that seek to reconfigure, redeploy, and move beyond conventional readings. In 2024 we issue an open call to established and emerging Jeremiah scholars to propose papers in keeping with this spirit of exploration.

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zTest Program Unit

Christopher J. O'Connor
Christopher Hooker
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Call for papers: Here is where the description would appear. Updating the description here.

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