Orion Center Newsletter Update
Orion Grant Recipients Speak
Three Orion grant recipients spoke at our coffee hour talks this spring:
Dr. Avner Glicklich (History of Israel, Tel Aviv University), Noach
Hacham (Doctoral Student, History of Israel, Hebrew University) and
Ronit Nikolsky (Doctoral Student, Religious Studies, Hebrew University).
At the most recent event, Dr. Avner Glicklich spoke about his
application of comparative religion, anthropology and phenomenology in
order to understand the priests’ experience when they conducted
sacrifices in the Jerusalem Temple. He draws comparisons with Greek
religion and culture, particularly sports and theater, and poses the
question: Why were the priests themselves drawn to Hellenistic (that is,
Greek) influence? The Scrolls’ component of his work includes a new
perspective on the priestly origins of the Qumran sect and on aspects of
that community’s self-understanding.
Orion Center Welcomes New Web Master
Hebrew University doctoral candidate, David Emanuel, has been appointed
webmaster of the Orion Center website and moderator of the Orion email
discussion group. David recently completed an M.A. degree in the field
of “The Bible and Ancient Near East” at the Hebrew University’s Rothberg
International School and is working on a Ph.D on “Inner Biblical
Interpretation and Allusion in Historiographic Psalms”. He served as an
Orion Student Intern last year, while taking a graduate seminar on
Biblical Interpretation in the Dead Sea Scrolls with Orion Center
Director, Dr. Esther Chazon.
David also holds an M.Sc. in Computer Science from University College,
London, and worked in that field as Project Executive for Reuters in
London. He thus brings strong computer skills and experience, in
addition to knowledge of the Bible and Dead Sea Scrolls, to his new
position at the Orion Center. David replaces former Orion Chief of
Publications, Dr. Avital Pinnick, who has taken a position in the
private computer market. The Center wishes both David and Avital well
in their new endeavors!
The Virtual Qumran Project
The Orion Center for the Study of the Dead Sea Scrolls and Associated
Literature has been awarded a grant by the Dorot Foundation to develop a
Virtual Qumran tour on the Orion web site.
Virtual Qumran (VQ) will provide information about the Dead Sea Scrolls
and the new picture they offer of Jews, Judaism and the origins of
Christianity during the formative Second Temple period. This will be an
educational resource for high school and college students, teachers, and
the general public. The information will be presented in an entertaining
format and will include scans of scroll fragments, artifacts, maps, a
timeline and pictures with captions.
VQ will be organized as an on-line tour of the caves and archeological
site at Qumran. The visitor will be able to enter the caves, buildings
and other installations (water cisterns, cemeteries, etc.) where he or
she can learn about the activities conducted there and the people
engaged in them.
At the pottery workshop, for example, the visitor will be able to
compare the pottery made at Qumran with that from other sites, learn
about the life styles and beliefs of different communities and about
modern scientific techniques of pottery analysis, including neutron
activation of the clay in nuclear reactors. During the visit to the
communal hall, the visitor will get a sense of communal meetings, meals,
study, and worship, while learning about competing institutions of
Second Temple Judaism - including the Jerusalem Temple and the fledgling synagogue.
The VQ tour will be fully co-ordinated with the scholarly pages of the
Orion web site, providing additional resources for those who wish to
pursue a specific topic in greater detail. The tour and expanded Orion
web site reflect the most up-to-date academic research on the Dead Sea
Scrolls, which is the hallmark of the Orion Center.
The Orion Center wishes to thank the Dorot Foundation for its generous
contribution to the Virtual Qumran Project.
Sixth International Orion Symposium
Sapiential Perspectives: Wisdom Literature in Light of the Dead Sea Scrolls
20-22 May 2001
Beit Maiersdorf, Mt. Scopus
The recent publication of two volumes of the “Discoveries in the Judaean
Desert” series, devoted exclusively to sapiential texts, XX and XXXIV,
provides the impetus for a reassessment and reevaluation of this group
of compositions within Judaism and early Christianity. Prior to the
discovery of the Scrolls, our knowledge of wisdom literature in the
Second Temple period was limited to contemporary biblical books,
apocryphal works, and pseudepigraphical writings. Recently published
compositions, especially 4QInstruction (formerly Sapiential Work) and
Mysteries, now allow for a more refined and nuanced picture of wisdom
literature and its impact on and interaction with other genres. In
addition to shedding light on the world of their authors, these texts
also provide a missing link between earlier and later sapiential
compositions. Analysis of these newly published works also demonstrates
how the authors reacted to and reused biblical wisdom in their new
Top of page