Editor(s): Tom Thatcher, Chris Keith, Raymond F. Person, Jr., Elsie R. Stern
The recent publication of The Dictionary of the Bible and Ancient Media (Bloomsbury, 2017) presents an excellent opportunity for a session on the status quaestionis of the contributions of media studies to biblical studies. At SBL in Boston, a panel will reflect on the current state of the field and propose directions that appear to be promising for future research.
The Dictionary of the Bible and Ancient Media is a convenient and authoritative reference tool, introducing specific terms and concepts helpful to the study of the Bible and related literature in ancient communications culture. Since the early 1980s, biblical scholars have begun to explore the potentials of interdisciplinary theories of oral tradition, oral performance, personal and collective memory, ancient literacy and scribality, visual culture and ritual. Over time these theories have been combined with considerations of critical and exegetical problems in the study of the Bible, the history of Israel, Christian origins, and rabbinics. The Dictionary of the Bible and Ancient Media responds to the rapid growth of the field by providing a source of reference that offers clear definitions, and in-depth discussions of relevant terms and concepts, and the relationships between them.