Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Interspaces between Word, Gaze and Touch


Interspaces between Word, Gaze and Touch
The Bible and the Visual Medium in the Middle Ages. Collected Essays on «Noli me tangere», the Woman with the Haemorrhage, the Head of John the Baptist


Prof. Barbara Baert


To understand the origins, spread and changing functions of images in Christianity requires an interdisciplinary approach. This book will explore the limits and possibilities of such an approach, against the background of current methodological developments. The rise of visual studies and the re-evaluation of anthropology have contributed to a favourable climate for interdisciplinary research in the humanities. With regard to the Bible and the Visual Medium, the basic focus this book is concerned with, a strong new pact has been forged between Theology and Art History. Carefully calibrated methodologies have been developed to unite the world of the word and the world of the visual medium as a truly interdisciplinary research object. Historical-critical exegesis, church history, iconology and cultural anthropology together provide foundational support for knowledge of broader visual themes, and the functions of works of art. In their interplay they become the gateway to the Interspaces of word, gaze and touch.
The three chapters of this book plumb the interspaces between the world of texts (word), images (gaze) and sensation (touch). The choice of the three themes was carefully considered. They provide an optimal means of testing the strengths and limitations of the most recent interdisciplinary research in the study of the Bible and the visual medium. Furthermore, they take on exceptional forms at the intersection of the interspaces. Finally, each of the themes is anchored in a particular biblical phrase, which sealed its most influential pact between word an image, and gave rise to impressive visual traditions within Christianity: Do not touch me (John 20:17), Who touched my clothes? (Mark 5:30), He must increase, but I must decrease (John 3:30).

The is book available on the page of the publisher.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The “dark” passages of the Bible

We invite your comments concerning the following passage of Verbum Domini:

  • Which texts would you consider the “dark passages” of the Bible?
  • Is “the correct interpretation” a remedy for these passages?

The “dark” passages of the Bible

In discussing the relationship between the Old and the New Testaments, the Synod also considered those passages in the Bible which, due to the violence and immorality they occasionally contain, prove obscure and difficult. Here it must be remembered first and foremost that biblical revelation is deeply rooted in history. God’s plan is manifested progressively and it is accomplished slowly, in successive stages and despite human resistance. God chose a people and patiently worked to guide and educate them. Revelation is suited to the cultural and moral level of distant times and thus describes facts and customs, such as cheating and trickery, and acts of violence and massacre, without explicitly denouncing the immorality of such things. This can be explained by the historical context, yet it can cause the modern reader to be taken aback, especially if he or she fails to take account of the many “dark” deeds carried out down the centuries, and also in our own day. In the Old Testament, the preaching of the prophets vigorously challenged every kind of injustice and violence, whether collective or individual, and thus became God’s way of training his people in preparation for the Gospel. So it would be a mistake to neglect those passages of Scripture that strike us as problematic. Rather, we should be aware that the correct interpretation of these passages requires a degree of expertise, acquired through a training that interprets the texts in their historical-literary context and within the Christian perspective which has as its ultimate hermeneutical key “the Gospel and the new commandment of Jesus Christ brought about in the paschal mystery”. I encourage scholars and pastors to help all the faithful to approach these passages through an interpretation which enables their meaning to emerge in the light of the mystery of Christ.
[Verbum Domini 42]
Access to the entire document in 9 languages.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Colloquium Biblicum Lovaniense

Colloquium Biblicum Lovaniense LX
Bijbelse Studiedagen te Leuven
Journées Bibliques de Louvain
July 26 – 28, 2011

The Apocryphal Gospels within the Context of Early Christian Theology

President: Jens Schroeter

Sponsored by: Katholieke Universiteit Leuven | Université Catholique de Louvain | FWO / FNRS, Brussel

Invited speakers:

  • Jens SCHROETER (HU-Berlin): The Apocryphal Gospels within the Context of Early Christian Theology
  • François BOVON (Harvard Divinity School): Jésus en Égypte: Les évangiles apocryphes de l’enfance comme livres utiles a l’âme
  • Geert VAN OYEN (UC Louvain): Het Protevangelium Jacobi: een apocriefe tekst buiten categorie
  • Rémi GOUNELLE (Strasbourg): Les Actes de Pilate: un évangile judéo-chrétien?
  • Stephen J. PATTERSON (Eden Theological Seminary): Platonism in the Apocryphal Gospels
  • Judith HARTENSTEIN: Erscheinungsevangelien (Gespräche mit dem Auferstandenen) im Kontext frühchristlicher Theologie: Anknüpfungspunkte und Besonderheiten der christologischen Vorstellungen
  • Jörg FREY (Zürich): Apokryphisierung im Petrusevangelium
  • Pheme PERKINS (Boston College): Jewish Christian Gospels: Primitive Tradition Imagined
  • Ismo DUNDERBERG (Helsinki): Johannine Traditions in the Second Century
  • Paul-Hubert POIRIER (Laval): L’Évangile de Thomas (NH II,2), témoin de la théologie chrétienne primitive
  • Tobias NICKLAS (Regensburg): Das Judasevangelium
  • Christoph MARKSCHIES (HU-Berlin): Apokryphen als Zeugnisse spätantiker mehrheitskirchlicher Frömmigkeit – das Beispiel des Bartholomäusevangeliums
  • Enrico NORELLI (Geneve): Les premieres traditions sur la Dormition de Marie comme catalyseurs de formes
  • Joseph VERHEYDEN (KU Leuven): The Early Church and “the Other Gospels”

Detailed description and the programme: Colloquium Biblicum Lovaniense

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The New Testament and Rabbinic Literature

The present book brings together the contributions of the foremost specialists on the relationship of the New Testament and Rabbinic Literature. It contains the proceedings of a Symposium held at the K.U.Leuven in January 2006. The contributors, from different European countries as well as from Israel, present in detail the history of rabbinical scholarship by Christian scholars and deal with the main issues in the study of rabbinic materials. As could be expected, much attention is given to halakhic issues, but literary questions in Midrash, Targum and Mystical Literature are also dealt … read morewith. All contributions are in English, and the volume is completed with a very large “cumulative bibliography” which will enhance its usefulness.

Biographical note

Reimund Bieringer

is professor of New Testamentat the Faculty of Theology, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven and author of numerous books and articles on New Testament topics, particularly on Paul.

Florentino García Martínez

was Professor of Early Judaism and Dead Sea Scrolls at the Universities of Groningen (Netherlands) and Leuven (Belgium). He is the editor-in-chief of the Journal for the Study of Judaism and editorial secretary of the Revue de Qumran. He has written numerous books and articles on Second Temple Judaism and the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Didier Pollefeyt

is professor of Jewish-Christian Relations at the Faculty of Theology, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven.

Peter Tomson

is professor of New Testament, Patristics and Rabbinics at the Faculty of Protestant Theology in Brussels, Belgium. He is General Editor of the Compendia Rerum Judaicarum ad Novum Testamentum.

Table of content

Contributors include: William Horbury, Isaiah Gafni, Giuseppe Veltri, Günter Stemberger, Catherine Hezser, Roland Deines, Peter J. Tomson, Lutz Doering, Friedrich Avemarie, Thomas Kazen, Jan Joosten, Menahem Kister, Miguel Pérez Fernández, Martin McNamara, and Crispin Fletcher-Louis.

The is book available on the page of the publisher.
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