|Sydney November Meeting|
The final meeting for 2021 for Sydney members will be held on Friday, 19 November, with a paper by Dr Janine Luttick. The meeting will again be held via Zoom and will commence at 2.00pm Sydney time (and should conclude by 3.30pm). Her paper is titled: “The Raising of Jairus’ Daughter (Mark 5:21–24, 35–43): A Reading in light of Depictions of Children’s Bodies in the First Century CE.”
While modern scholarship has produced a rich deposit of literature on the stories of the raising of Jairus’ daughter and the healing of the bleeding woman (Mark 5:21–24, 35–43 and 5:23–34 respectively), much of the treatment of these episodes privileges the account of the woman. The story of the bleeding woman is commonly taken up as the main frame of reference for reading the whole of 5:21–43, often controlling how the account of Jairus’ daughter is interpreted. Detailed analyses that focus primarily on the story of Jairus’ daughter exist, but are rare. At the same time, when examining both stories together, secondary literature often identifies body-related themes in both episodes, although little of this specifically considers the depictions of children’s bodies that were part of the cultural landscape of first century CE. This paper seeks to expand the frame of reference by which the story of Jairus’ daughter may have been heard. Locating the account in its first-century milieu, the paper offers an examination of the raising of Jairus’ daughter in light of Greco-Roman depictions of children’s and females’ bodies in written and visual texts in the first century CE, particularly those of dying and dead bodies. The analysis points towards the observation that notions of the household appear to be reconfigured for those who identify with Jesus, while at the same time duplicating some of the conventional images of family and children that populated the first-century landscape. The paper illustrates how a change in the vantage point from which the account of Jairus’ daughter is examined expands the vision of the story within the broader narrative of Mark’s gospel and conveys ideas about the family, (female) children and household amongst those who encountered the gospel.
Dr Janine Luttick is a lecturer in biblical studies at Australian Catholic University, in the faculty of theology and philosophy. Janine completed a PhD at ACU. Her dissertation considered the story of the raising of Jairus’ daughter in Mark’s gospel by examining the role of the body in Mark’s gospel and the function of depictions of females’ bodies in Judaism and Greco-Roman culture in the first century CE. Currently, her interests are focused on representations of children and childhood in the Bible and ancient world. Her other interest is the role of learner agency in biblical studies. In 2020, Janine was awarded the ACU Citation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning (Early Career) for learning design and teaching practice that facilitates student agency and voice through critical engagement with the Bible in dialogue with challenges of the contemporary world.
Please RSVP to Stephen Cook by 12 November and he will send you the Zoom link closer to the date.
|New Sydney Coordinator|
The Sydney/NSW Branch of FBS has a new Coordinator: Stephen Cook. Many thanks to the previous Coordinator, Gili Kugler, who has done a great job in that role. Stephen can be contacted at email@example.com.
|Report on the 2021 FBS Conference|
The 2021 FBS Conference held via Zoom from 30 September to 1 October was most successful. A wide range of speakers, on two streams, with Frank Moloney as the keynote speaker, provided a wealth of interesting and stimulating material. Up to eighty people were zoomed in at the one time, and the feedback has been very positive. FBS has a conference every two years.
|2021 Issue of Australian Biblical Review Mailed Out|
The 2021 issue of Australian Biblical Review (Volume 69) was mailed out on 16 September, earlier than usual to allow for the delivery delays occurring worldwide at the moment. Details of the articles in this issue can found here and the full text of all of the book reviews can be found here.
|Postage Rate Increases|
In September Australia Post announced changes to some international postage rates.There are now five zones: New Zealand—$8.50, Asia/Pacific—$9.60, North America—$13.50, Europe and Africa—$14.60 and Middle East—$15.00. Current subscription rates can always be found on the ABR Page.
|August Melbourne Meeting Cancelled|
The third Melbourne gathering of the Fellowship for Biblical Studies for 2021, due to be held on Friday, 13 August, was cancelled. Instead, U-Wen Low presented his paper, “Revelation as Performance—A Pastiche of Methods” on Zoom, and a good number of members viewed it and asked questions.
|August Zoom Meeting for Sydney Members|
The third meeting for Sydney members was a remote meeting via Zoom on 13 August. Dr Alexandra (Ali) Robinson from United Theological College presented a paper with the title “What does it mean to reject Lordship? An examination of the epistle of Jude.”
The term κυριότητα in Jude 8 can be understood as either “authority” or “lordship.” Each meaning would affect the way the rest of the letter is read. Does the epistle rebuke the people who do not submit to the direction of church leaders and traditional doctrine? Or does the epistle reveal an apostasy of rejecting Jesus himself? This paper will bring out the distinction between the two directions and will determine which of the two meanings fits better in the context of the epistle.
Dr Alexandra Robinson is a lecturer in New Testament Studies at United Theological College. She received her PhD at Macquarie University where she researched the harsh rhetoric of Jude’s epistle in relationship with Jewish woe oracles and Greco-Roman invective. This research led to the publication of her monograph (2019) with T&T Clark and subsequent articles on harsh rhetoric in both Jude’s epistle and the gospel of John, published through New Testament Studies, Novum Testamentum and the Journal of Greco-Roman Christianity and Judaism. Since taking up a position at UTC, she has begun work on Luke’s gospel looking at the significance of female characters such as Mary, the mother of Jesus.
|Melbourne Meeting Cancelled|
The second Melbourne gathering of the Fellowship for Biblical Studies for 2021, due to be held on Thursday, 27 May, at the Centre for Theology and Ministry, has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 outbreak. A link has been sent to members for a Zoom meeting at 7.30 to view the paper by Dr Megan Turton titled, “Natural Law and Positive Law: The Principles of ‘Bloodguilt’ in the Biblical Laws and Narratives.”
|Tour of Chau Chak Wing Museum|
On 23 April Sydney FBS members were treated to a tour of the new Chau Chak Wing Museum of the University of Sydney at Camperdown, focussing on artefacts related to Biblical Studies, from the periods of ANE to the Roman Empire. 24 members attended.
The tour entailed fun and enriching activities that enabled members to (lit.) touch pieces of the world reflected in the ancient texts they are dealing with. This was also a great opportunity to finally meet in person, after so long!
|FBS Member Achievements in 2020|
The list of achievements by FBS members during 2020 is now online at the Achievements Page.
|2020 Annual General Meeting|
The Annual General Meeting of the Fellowship for Biblical Studies was held as a Zoom meeting on Thursday, 5 November. 30 members participated. The Presidential Address was given later in the evening by Zoom by Dr Robyn Whitaker, titled: “The Tale of Two Feasts: The Use of Rhetoric in Matthew 14.”
The following officers and members of the Executive were elected to hold these positions for the next year:
|ABR Editor (Old Testament):||Mark O’Brien|
|ABR Editor (New Testament):||Alan Cadwallader|
|ABR Book Review Editor:||Gareth Wearne|
|Committee Member:||Chris Monaghan|
|Committeee Member:||Gili Kugler|
Meetings during 2021 will be held on Friday, 12 March at 2.00pm (speaker: Chris Porter), Thursday, 27 May at 6.30pm with dinner (speaker: Megan Turton), Friday, 13 August at 2.00pm (U-Wen Low) and Thursday, 4 November at 6.30pm with dinner (AGM with speaker to be confirmed).
A list of member’s achievements in 2020 was presented to the meeting. See the Achievements Page.
|Australian Biblical Review now in the ATLA database|
All of the articles and book reviews of Australian Biblical Review since its first issue in 1951 are now available online in the ATLA (American Theological Library Association) database. Access can be obtained through libraries.
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