Research | Writing | Digital Humanities | Biblical Studies

J. B. Lightfoot Manuscripts

J. B. Lightfoot Manuscripts

Ben Witherington talks here about his discovery of many unpublished commentary manuscripts by J. B. Lightfoot that Witherington discovered at the Durham Cathedral library while on sabbatical at St John’s College, Durham University (where I work, as it happens). Some of this material is found in the notes of Witherinton & Still (eds.) Acts of the…Continue Reading

Old Commentaries are Concise

Old Commentaries are Concise

I was just referencing Ernst Haenchen’s The Acts of the Apostles (transl. from 1965 German edition) and reminded once again of how concise some of the older commentators can be. It is refreshing, really. It is for this reason I still prefer to consult I. Howard Marshall’s (1978) commentary on Luke often–He can say in half as many…Continue Reading

New College, Edinburgh: An American Link (expanded)

New College, Edinburgh: An American Link (expanded)

On 4 July 1843, Revd Dr William Cunningham was one of five professors recommended for service to the New College that the Free Church of Scotland, having recently broken away from the Church of Scotland, was establishing for theological training (one of them, Dr Black, was to serve in Aberdeen, the four others in Edinburgh). Before the present…Continue Reading

New College, Edinburgh: An American Link

New College, Edinburgh: An American Link

In the evenings I have begun reading New College Edinburgh: A Centenary History (1946), which I picked up at an Edinburgh book sale last year (a gem, I’ll say). I was interested to learn that in setting up the college in the mid 19th century, Revd. Dr. Cunningham, one of four early professors involved, was sent to America to survey…Continue Reading

Making the Most of Shifting Modes of Scholarly Communication

Making the Most of Shifting Modes of Scholarly Communication

That was the subtitle of a talk I gave at a seminar of the Centre for Humanities Innovation (CHI) at Durham University yesterday. What I wanted to do was initiate a conversation about new and old forms of scholarly communication and offer a way of classifying them to help scholars consider taking up new forms. Along the way,…Continue Reading

A Gracious Listener

A Gracious Listener

Joel Marcus of Duke University recently wrote a tribute to J. Louis Martyn in which he said, But he was even better as a seminar leader, and even better than that in one-on-one conversation, because he always conveyed the sense that, however stupid you thought yourself to be, he was learning something from you. And I…Continue Reading

‘Higher Criticism’ is not the Bogeyman

‘Higher Criticism’ is not the Bogeyman

I recently came across a post by Roger Olson called “The Absurdity of “Higher Criticism” of the Gospels.” I think I am as bothered about his characterisation of higher criticism (hereafter HC)–indeed, even the use of the term–as he is about HC itself. Olson implies that HC is basically a kind of biblical criticism* that is “…negative or destructive…Continue Reading

Changing Paratexts of Bibles over Time

Changing Paratexts of Bibles over Time

Recently I gave a CODEC Research Seminar on how the paratexts of Bibles–those framing features of Bibles such as book form, covers, page layout, etc.–have changed over time. A recording of the seminar is now available here: “From Scrolls to Scrolling.” The original abstract is as follows: Biblical texts have been recorded upon (or in) various media…Continue Reading

Crisis of Meaning in the (Digital) Humanities?

Crisis of Meaning in the (Digital) Humanities?

Fortnightly CODEC staff meet to discuss a reading selected on rotation. This week was my selection, Alan Liu’s “The Meaning of the Digital Humanities” PMLA 128.2 (2013). He argues that the problem of meaning in the digital humanities registers a crisis of meaning in the humanities more generally. In his words: My thesis is that an understanding of…Continue Reading