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Princess, Poetess, Priestess, Ornament of Heaven: Enheduanna, the Women of Mesopotamia & Our Biblical Narrative
Sunday, December 4, 2022 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pmFree
Most ancient texts come to us without authorship or attribution, yet the first named author in history was a woman: Enheduanna (ca. 2285-2250 BCE). She was a Princess and a High Priestess in Sumer who told us the grandeur and sorrows of her life in the hymns and petitionary prayers that she wrote. Her compositions were highly valued, and therefore they were copied and re-copied in antiquity; many are thought to be early foundations of some of our own biblical psalms and hymns. We will explore the groundbreaking “She Who Wrote: Enheduanna and Women of Mesopotamia” currently on view (through Feb. 2023) at the Morgan Library (NYC) and not only see the woman and her work, but we will tease out many connections to our biblical narrative that can be seen in the exhibition.
Sharon Keller, who served as CSP’s 15th Annual One Month Scholar in residence in January 2016 and who earned her doctorate at NYU in the Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies in the area of Bible and the Ancient Near East, is a member of the Classics faculty at Hofstra University. She has been an Assistant Professor of Bible and Ancient Semitic Languages at The Jewish Theological Seminary and at Hebrew Union College; she has also held appointments at NYU, and New York City’s Hunter College—teaching biblical text courses as well as more general courses in biblical literature and history, as well as the courses in the art and archaeology of the lands of the Bible and the ancient Mediterranean world. She has written and edited numerous scholarly articles and academic books, most of which relate to the interplay between biblical Israel and ancient Egypt. Her most popular book, Jews: A Treasury of Art and Literature was awarded the prestigious National Jewish Book Award. Known for the enthusiasm and humor that she brings to all of her talks that make otherwise esoteric subjects easily accessible, Sharon is an in-demand lecturer and adult education course instructor throughout the United States.
CSP Partners: Beth Israel (San Diego, CA), Brotherhood Synagogue (Gramercy Park, NYC), Congregation Adath Jeshurun (Elkins Park, PA), Congregation Beth Shalom (Seattle, WA), Congregation B’nai Tzedek (Fountain Valley, CA), Congregation B’nai Israel (Tustin, CA), Jewish Collaborative of Orange County, Shomrei Torah Synagogue (San Fernando Valley, CA), Temple Bat Yahm (Newport Beach, CA), Temple Beth David (Westminster, CA),Temple Beth El of South Orange County (Aliso Viejo, CA), Temple Beth Emet (Anaheim, CA), Temple Beth Ohr (La Mirada, CA), Temple Beth Tikvah (Fullerton, CA), Temple Beth Shalom (Needham, MA), Temple Beth Sholom (Santa Ana, CA), Temple Emanuel (Newton, MA), Temple Judea of Laguna Woods, CA, The Boston Synagogue (Boston, MA), Town & Village Synagogue (NYC, NY), University Synagogue (Irvine, CA), Valley Beth Shalom (Encino, CA) & Walnut Street Synagogue (Chelsea, MA)