PSCO Presentation: 5 November 2015

Near Eastern Afterlives of Ancient Jewish Materials

John C. Reeves (University of North Carolina at Charlotte)


John Reeves will discuss his current project bringing together the Near Eastern afterlives of ancient Jewish materials, especially within Manichaeism and Islam.

Prof. Reeves (Ph.D., Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion) is Blumenthal Professor of Judaic Studies and Professor of Religious Studies at the Department of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Much of his work probes the margins of conventionally conceived categories, exploring the overlaps and commonalities discernible among a host of Near Eastern fringe groups and texts which inhabit the twilight realms of cosmic arcana, apocalyptic fervor, and religious dualism in late antiquity and the medieval era. His books include Prolegomena to a History of Islamicate Manichaeism (2011); Trajectories in Near Eastern Apocalyptic: A Postrabbinic Jewish Apocalypse Reader (2005); Heralds of That Good Realm: Syro-Mesopotamian Gnosis and Jewish Traditions (1996); and Jewish Lore in Manichaean Cosmogony: Studies in the Book of Giants Traditions (1992). He has been awarded a 2015/2016 ACLS Fellowship for his research project on “Illuminating the Afterlife of Ancient Apocryphal Jewish Literature,” wherein he assesses a number of ideas about the possible survival or continuous transmission of Second Temple and early Roman era Jewish compositions among later Jewish communities in the Islamicate East, Fatimid North Africa, medieval Andalusia, Byzantium, and western Europe.

Audio Recording

Here is an audio recording of this session.

You can also download this recording.

Suggested Readings

A PDF of suggested readings has been posted on our Facebook page.

Meeting and Dining

All are welcome! As usual, those interested are also welcome to join us for an informal dinner prior to the session. Those wishing to dine together before the seminar will meet at 6:00 p.m. in the Second-Floor Lounge of Cohen Hall and then walk next door to the food court in Houston Hall. Or, just meet us in the Houston Hall downstairs food-court between 6:00-6:45 p.m.

As usual, the PSCO seminar will begin at 7:00 p.m. and end at 9:00 p.m. We meet in the Second-Floor Lounge of Cohen Hall.