Orion Center Symposium

The Sixteenth International Orion Symposium

The Dead Sea Scrolls at Seventy: "Clear a Path in the Wilderness"
in conjunction with the University of Vienna, New York University, the Israel Antiquities Authority, and the Israel Museums
April 29-May 2, 2018

To see the abstracts please click here.
To see the program brochure (1) click here.
To see the program brochure (2) click here.

His Excellency Martin Weiss, the Austrian Ambassador to Israel,
will greet the symposium on Tuesday evening, May 1, rather than Sunday evening, April 29, as originally scheduled.

To mark seventy years since the initial discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, an international symposium will be held in Jerusalem, April 29-May 2, 2018. The overarching symposium theme will be "The Wilderness"--as a real place; as the location of biblical episodes, most notably during the formative years of Israel's wandering from Egypt to the Promised Land; as a motif; and as a concept (sometimes idealized, sometimes demonized). The wilderness itself may be seen as a biblical staging area for formative episodes in Israel's history; as a conceptual framework, that itself constitutes a formative element in Second Temple literature; and as a geographical locale, the location of the Qumran group's activity and a theater for contemporary archaeological exploration. Thus, the upcoming symposium explores "the wilderness" from multiple angles—exegetical, historical, sociological, archaeological—as these relate to Qumran, other Judean Desert sites, the Dead Sea Scrolls, and relevant late antique literatures, cultures, and religions.

The conference will feature invited lectures; open sessions; and an evening of public lectures at the Israel Museum. A program of sessions will be posted here as soon as it becomes available.

Scholars and graduate students in related fields are welcome to attend symposium sessions.