Fixing History: Ethics, Ritual, and Two Objects at Princeton
A defixio or so-called magical binding tablet from Antioch opens up questions about emotions, ritual, and ethics in antiquity. This lecture argues that small, so-called “magical” texts from antiquity should be read alongside contemporaneous philosophical disputes about the passions—philosophical disputes that are connected with the question of how to live as an ethical person.
Laura Nasrallah is the Buckingham Professor of New Testament Criticism and Interpretation at Yale Divinity School and Yale University’s Department of Religious Studies. She is author of Archaeology and the Letters of Paul; Christian Responses to Roman Art and Architecture: The Second-Century Church Amid the Spaces of Empire; and An Ecstasy of Folly: Prophecy and Authority in Early Christianity. She is co-editor, with Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza, of Prejudice and Christian Beginnings: Investigating Race, Gender, and Ethnicity in Early Christian Studies; with Charalambos Bakirtzis and Steven J. Friesen, of From Roman to Early Christian Thessalonikē: Studies in Religion and Archaeology; and with AnneMarie Luijendijk and Charalambos Bakirtzis, of the forthcoming From Roman to Early Christian Cyprus: Studies in Religion and Archaeology.
Department of Religion