Course Number: RELIGION 156, AMES 138, JEWISHST 156
Course Attributes: CCI, EI, ALP, CZ
Course Time: Tues. & Thurs., 11:45am – 1:00pm
Judaism, Christianity, and Islam are characterized as religions of the book. Their sacred texts are foundational to the faiths they represent. In spite of shared histories, overlapping contents, and parallel perspectives, their Sacred Scriptures diverge in key points of content, interpretation, and uses by their communities. In this course, students will be introduced to the history, contours, and content of the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, the New Testament, and the Qur’an and hadith, exploring issues of scripture and authority, texts and manuscripts, translation and interpretation, performance, canonicity, ethical issues, and contemporary use.
Marc Zvi Brettler is an American biblical scholar, and the Bernice and Morton Lerner Professor in Judaic Studies at Duke University. He earned his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. from Brandeis University, where he previously served as Dora Golding Professor of Biblical Studies. He researches biblical metaphors, the Bible and gender, biblical historical texts, the book of Psalms, and the post-biblical reception of the Hebrew Bible, including in the New Testament. He is a co-founder of the website thetorah.com, which integrates critical and traditional methods of studying the Bible.
Mark Goodacre is a Professor in the Department of Religious Studies at Duke University. He specializes in the New Testament and Christian Origins. He earned his MA, M.Phil, and DPhil at the University of Oxford and was Senior Lecturer at the University of Birmingham until 2005.
His research interests include Jesus, the Synoptic Gospels, John’s Gospel, the Gospel of Thomas and Jesus in Film. He is the author of four books including The Case Against Q: Studies in Markan Priority and the Synoptic Problem (Harrisburg, PA: Trinity Press International, 2002) and Thomas and the Gospels: The Case for Thomas’s Familiarity with the Synoptics (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2012). He is well known for internet sites like The New Testament Gateway and his podcast, the NT Pod.
Ellen McLarney’s training is in Middle East Studies, Islamic Studies, and Comparative Literature. Her field of specialization is in Arabic literature, with a specific focus on the literary culture of Islamic societies. Her book Soft Force: Women in Egypt’s Islamic Awakening explores how Muslim women writers describe Islamic conceptions of women’s liberation, women’s rights, and women’s equality. She was in the Peace Corps in Morocco where she taught in the university and has lived in Tunisia, Egypt, Jerusalem, and Syria.