S24-107 Bible in Ancient and Modern Media

11/24/2013 9:00 AM to 11:30 AM

Room: 332 - Convention Center

Theme: Remembering the Temple: Memory, Identity, and the Problem of Material Culture

What roles does material culture play in the formation of cultural memory and identity? How can material culture convey and sustain cultural memories, how do cultural memories give meaning and significance to material culture, and what happens to those memories when those things are lost or destroyed? This session explores these questions, across history, with particular focus on items of material culture associated with the First and Second Temples. Emphasis is placed on how these items gain and shed meanings as they circulate through time and through space, from Jerusalem in the pre-exilic period to 17th century Europe. How does the loss of the Temples and their furniture both pose problems and create opportunities for groups that identify with the biblical past? How have these groups come to terms with and even capitalized on the loss of these cultural items? In what ways and forms do these lost objects live on in those societies? How has lost biblical material culture been quested after, recreated, and, significantly, claimed and contested, by groups of Judeans, Jews, and Christians? By bringing together specialists from across historical periods and fields of study—biblical studies, Jewish studies, social memory studies, material culture studies, history, and anthropology—this session seeks to illuminate how Judean, Jewish, and Christian communities have understood, used, and reused temple objects, and the roles that they have played in the construction of memory and identity before and after their loss.

Daniel Fisher, University of California-Berkeley, Introduction (5 min)

Daniel Fisher, University of California-Berkeley, Constructions of the Ark and Constructions of the Past in Deuteronomy and Exodus (30 min)

Dale Loepp, University of California-Berkeley, The Encaenia as Christian Sukkot: Recovered Memory of Israelite Temples (30 min)

Benjamin Fisher, Towson University, Remembering the Temple on the Amstel: The Biblical Past and Present of the Portuguese Jews (30 min)

Kevin McGeough, University of Lethbridge, Re-remembering the Temple: Esoteric Reconstructions of the Materiality of Solomon’s Temple Inspired by Archaeological Investigations (30 min)

Discussion (25 min)