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MemberGrégoire Espesset

Current research themes: . History and historiography of academic Sinology and Western representations of Chinese culture / Histoire et historiographie de la sinologie académique et des représentations occidentales de la culture chinoise . History, philology and textual criticism of “Weft” (wei 緯) literature / Histoire, philologie et ecdotique des “Livres de trame” . Taoism (also spelt ‘Daoism’) in medieval China: History, historiography, sources / Le taoïsme en Chine médiévale : Histoire, historiographie, sources

MemberJohn Witte, Jr.

John Witte, Jr., JD (Harvard); Dr. Theol. h.c. (Heidelberg), is Robert W. Woodruff University Professor of Law, McDonald Distinguished Professor, and Director of the Center for the Study of Law and Religion at Emory University. A leading specialist in legal history, human rights, religious freedom, marriage and family law, and law and religion, he has published over 250 articles, 17 journal symposia, and 32 books. 

MemberHeather D Baker

As an Assyriologist who has also trained in archaeology and gained considerable experience of Near Eastern excavation, my primary interest is in combining textual information and material culture in the study of Mesopotamian society and economy. I apply this approach to the study of the Babylonian city and to investigating house and household. I am currently PI of an international project, Machine Translation and Automated Analysis of Cuneiform Languages (MTAAC), funded by SSHRC through the Trans-Atlantic Platform Digging into Data Challenge. Research Interests My work focuses on the social, political and economic history and material culture of 1st millennium BC Mesopotamia, with a particular interest in Babylonian urbanism and the built environment, and in the Neo-Assyrian royal household. My research and publications cover the following topics:

  • urbanism and the built environment
  • religious architecture
  • house and household
  • integration of textual and archaeological data
  • Hellenistic Babylonia (especially the city of Uruk)
  • the Assyrian royal palace and household
  • onomastics and naming practices
  • prosopography
  • slavery
  • society and economy
  • political history
  • cuneiform archives and archival practices

Employment

  • 2014–present: Assistant Professor in Ancient Near Eastern History, Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations, University of Toronto
  • 2009—2014: Senior Postdoc and PI of project “Royal Institutional Households in First Millennium BC Mesopotamia,” Institut fūr Orientalistik, University of Vienna
  • 2003–2009: Postdoc, START Project “The Economic History of Babylonia in the First Millennium BC,” Institut fūr Orientalistik, University of Vienna
  • 1999–2002: Research Associate, State Archives of Assyria Project, University of Helsinki; from July 1999, Editor-in-Charge of The Prosopography of the Neo-Assyrian Empire
  • 1993–1998: Editorial Assistant/IT Assistant (part-time), A Lexicon of Greek Personal Names (a British Academy Major Research Project)
  • 1994–1995: Curator Grade G (part-time), Department of the Middle East, the British Museum
  • 1984–1989: Field Archaeologist employed on various excavation and post-excavation projects in England, Cyprus, Turkey, Jordan, and Iraq

MemberAnthony Cerulli

Anthony Cerulli is an historian of religions whose research combines ethnographic, historical, and philological methods to address central issues in the study of religion, such as the nature of ritual, comparitivism, and the politics of religious rhetoric. His work also contributes to the fields of narrative medicine and medical and health humanities, where, in the American literary context, he has written about the relationship between religion, science, and authority in the work of Nathaniel Hawthorne. Most of his work is in South Asian Studies, where he examines associations between Indian religions and healing traditions. He is especially interested in how and why people “do things with texts” to heal and sustain wellbeing. To that end, his research looks at the intersections of premodern and modern literary cultures in India at sites of ritual healing, among Hindu communities, and in institutions of medical education. An exhibit from his photoethnography project, Manuscriptistan, exploring the aesthetics of manuscript archives in India is forthcoming in fall 2019.