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The Material Gospel - 31/05/2019, Notre Dame (IN, USA)



As material objects, instantiations of “the Gospel” participated in ritual, political, economic, and readerly contexts. Gospel books were powerful. Augustine of Hippo complains that his audiences put Gospel books under their pillows to cure toothache. Amulets attest that even short excerpts enabled users to access the protective power of the material Gospel. The Gospel codex sometimes represented Christian identity, as Gospel books were processed in liturgy and imposed on the shoulders of ordinands. In times of persecution, Gospel books might even be subject to public execution in place of Christ himself. Yet Gospel books might also be erased or destroyed for apparently more mundane reasons, as various kinds of recycling attest. As an anthological object, the multi-Gospel codex contributed to the development of a fourfold canonical Gospel. Early Christian readers developed novel strategies to facilitate knowledge, navigation, and use of Gospel literature. In each of these contexts, the materiality of Gospel literature plays a decisive role.



LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: Hesburgh Library, University of Notre Dame (Notre Dame, IN, USA)



INFO: web -




Inscripción online / Registration online / Registrazione online



9.00–9.30: Coffee and pastries
9.30–11.30: Session I
11.30–12.30: Lunch
12.30–14.30: Session II
14.30–15.00: Coffee
15.00–17.00: Session III

All sessions will be held in Hesburgh Library at the University of Notre Dame.


Session I

David Lincicum (Notre Dame): Welcome
Clare Rothschild (Lewis University): “Galen’s De indolentia and the Early Christian Codex”
Jeremiah Coogan (Notre Dame): “Navigating the Gospel: Nonlinear Access and Practical Use”
Nathan Eubank (Notre Dame): Respondent

Session II

Chris Keith (St Mary’s University Twickenham): “The Gospel Read, Sliced, and Burned: The Material Gospel and the Construction of Christian Identity”
Angela Zautcke (Notre Dame): “Erasing the Gospels: Insights from the Sinai Syriac Gospel Palimpsest”
Paul Wheatley (Notre Dame): Respondent


Session III

Sofía Torallas Tovar (University of Chicago): “Resisting the Codex: Christian Rolls in Late Antiquity”
Matthew Larsen (Princeton): “Codex Bobiensis: A Real-and-Imagined Biography of One Gospel Manuscript”
Robin Jensen (Notre Dame): Respondent


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