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Dissertation supervised by Robert Kraft, titled Martha Shamoni: A Jewish Syriac Rhymed Liturgical Poem of the Maccabean Martyrdoms

Additional less formal academic study

Midrash		 David Stern, University of Pennsylvania  2001
Hermeneutics of
Kabbalah Moshe Idel, University of Pennsylvania 2000
Jewish Liturgy Rothschild Symposium on Jewish Studies 2000
Modern Hebrew Hebrew Union College in Jerusalem Ulpan 2000
Modern Hebrew Hebrew University (HUJI) Ulpan 1996
Syriac Bar Ilan University, Ramat Gan, Israel 1995-1996
Jewish History Seminar, Aviezer Ravitzky, HUJI 1995-1996
Modern Hebrew FLAS Summer Consortium, Portland State 1990
Modern Hebrew University of Utah 1988-1990



"Ethical and Devotional Literature" Michael Terry, Ed., Reader's Guide to Judaism, Chicago, IL: Fitzroy Dearborn, 2000, pages 167-8.

"History: Talmudic Era," Michael Terry, Ed., Reader's Guide to Judaism, Chicago, IL: Fitzroy Dearborn, 2000, pages 253-4.

"Caves, Documents, Women: Archives and Archivists," The Dead Sea Scrolls Fifty Years after their Discovery: Proceedings of the Jerusalem Congress, July 20-25, 1997; Executive Ed., Galen Marquis, also ed. by Lawrence H. Schiffman, Emanuel Tov, and James C. VanderKam, Jerusalem, Israel: IES and The Israel Antiquities Authority, 2000, pages 761-772.

"Is there a Person in this Text? The First Sugya of Hullin" submitted for publication in Textual Reasoning: Journal of the Postmodern Jewish Philosophy Network, under revision.

"Media Papyri: Examining Carsten Thiede's Rediscovered Fragments of Matthew." Electronically published by IOUDAIOS at the following URL:


Bruce Chilton and Jacob Neusner, Judaism in the New Testament: Practices and Beliefs, New York, NY: Routledge, 1995. Note appeared in Religious Studies Review, Vol. 23, 195.

The Talmud of Babylonia, An American Translation: Volume XXXA: Tractate <.H>ullin; Chapters 1-2. Tzvee Zahavy, Translator (Brown Judaic Studies 253. Atlanta, GA: Scholars Press, 1992). Pp. xix + 238. Review appears in IOUDAIOS REVIEW, Vol. 2.924, Nov., 1992.


"Getting Past the Religion of the Text:  Proposing a Different Question." Paper presented to the Early Jewish Christian Relations Section, Society of Biblical Literature, SBL/AAR Annual Meeting, Toronto, Ontario; November 25, 2002.

"The Maccabean Martyrdoms: Versions and Varieties." Paper presented to the Pseudepigrapha Section, Society of Biblical Literature, SBL/AAR Annual Meeting, Toronto, Ontario; November 24, 2002.

"The Jewish Community and Early Syriac Christianity: Connecting the Dots." Paper presented to the Intertestamental History and Literature Session,  2002 International Meeting, The Society of Biblical Literature, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany, July 21, 2002.

"Have Story, Will Travel: Dislocation of the Maccabean Martyrdoms." Paper presented to the Philadelphia Seminar on Christian Origians, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, April 18, 2002.

"Paradigm Shift: Linking the Cairo Genizah." Paper presented at the Association for Jewish Studies Convention, Chicago, IL, December 21, 1999.

"Jewish Myth: An Exploration." Paper presented to the Department of Religious Studies Colloquium, October 1, 1999.

"Martha Shamoni: A Rediscovered Text of the Hasmonean Martyrdoms." Paper presented at Association for Jewish Studies, Late Antiquity Section, Boston, December, 1997.

"Caves, Documents, Women: Archives and Archivists." Paper presented at the International Congress on the Dead Sea Scrolls-Fifty Years after their Discovery, Jerusalem, Israel, July, 1997 [subsequently published].

"Materials for Midrash: An Examination of Some Non-Biblical Sources for Midrash and Aggada." Paper presented in the Rabbinic and Patristic Exegesis Group, SBL, New Orleans, November 1996.

"Expanded Text in the First 12 Chapters of Deuteronomy." Paper presented in the Textual Criticism of the Hebrew Bible Section, SBL, New Orleans, November 1996.

"How is this List Different from All Other Lists? The Virtual World of IOUDAIOS." Invited Panel presentation, Association for Jewish Studies, Boston, December 1994.

"Fourth Maccabees and the Asia Minor Provenance Hypothesis." Paper presented in the Hellenistic Judaism Section, SBL, Chicago, November 1994.

Presenter [with David Sandmel] "Digitized Manuscripts: Report and Demonstration of the Digitized Data Collection of the Jewish Manuscripts of the University of Pennsylvania." CARG Session, AAR/SBL Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA, November 1992.

"The Visions of Deborah." Paper presented at Visions and the Visionary Conference, School of Religion, University of Kansas, April, 1991.

A detailed professional vita with papers and presentations is available


Able to translate from Hebrew: Biblical, Mishnaic and Modern, as well as Aramaic: Biblical, Jewish Palestinian, Babylonian, Zoharic, Nabatean

Syriac, Ugaritic, Greek, French, German, Yiddish

Speak Hebrew and German

Beginning work in Arabic, Coptic, Latin



My work, listed above, includes the development of textual and archaeological information on the women of the time of Bar Kokhba, including the archive named for Babatha. I am currently finishing a dissertation which includes information about a more idealized figure, first (ca. 50 BCE, perhaps) given the name Martha Shamoni, known as Hannah and her Seven Sons in modern Judaism. In addition, I have developed a course on the personification of Wisdom in Jewish thought. I am planning next to compare these three representations of women against the historical background of Late Antiquity, the Talmudic Era, with a view to questions of their transformation or erasure in Jewish thought. The evidence is complex, and capable of a number of interpretations. It consists of archaeological data and archival texts for real women and men in the world of Babatha daughter of Simon, of Maoza and formerly of Ein Gedi, from 90 CE to 135 CE; literary texts found in Jewish and Christian sources which feature the personification of wisdom as Lady (Dame, Woman) Wisdom; and the complex literature on the Maccabean martyrdoms, including two rediscovered Syriac texts that present different perspectives on the mother of seven sons.

Other interests include the eschatology featured in the language associated with early Jewish martyrdom.


REFERENCES Available upon request