I am pleased to announce that Dr. Alan Segal has accepted an invitation to be a guest blogger on The Busybody. Most readers will recognize the name, but for those who don’t a bio is provided below. Alan will be blogging about a few things over the next couple of weeks or so: Paul’s view of the resurrection, afterlife views in general, and the way the media battle between The DaVinci Code and The Passion of the Christ relates to internal Christian disputes. Please give Alan a warm welcome.
Alan F. Segal is professor of Religion and Ingeborg Rennert Professor of Jewish Studies at Barnard College, Columbia University in Manhattan. When appointed he was the youngest full professor in the humanities in the university. He was chair of the Department between 1981-1984 and occasionally thereafter.
He was born in Worcester Massachusetts, educated at Worcester Academy, Amherst College (B.A. 1967), Brandeis University (M. A. 1969), Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion (B. H. L. 1971) and Yale University (M. A. 1971, M. Phil. 1973, Ph. D. 1975). His studies included English Literature, Psychology, Anthropology, Comparative Religion, Judaica, Christian Origins, and Rabbinics.
Before moving to Barnard College at Columbia University, Professor Segal was appointed to Princeton University for two three-year terms starting in 1974 and to the University of Toronto with tenure. He received tenure at the University of Toronto in 1977, less than three years after beginning his teaching career.
He was also invited to the Aspen Institute for Humanistic Studies in Aspen Colorado and to leadership training at Aspen’s Wye Plantation in Maryland. While living in Israel in 1977-1978 on a Guggenheim Fellowship, he lectured at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Tel Aviv University, and Bar Ilan University. He has served as guide on trips to Egypt, Turkey, Jordan, and Israel and traveled extensively in Europe. He has held fellowships from the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, the National Endowment for the Humanities, The Annenberg Institute, the Mellon Foundation, and the J. S. Guggenheim Foundation.
In the summer of 1988 at the Jubilee celebration in Cambridge England, he became the first Jewish member of the Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas to address the society. He was elected into membership of the American Society for the Study of Religion and the American Theological Association. He was also the first American not living in Canada to be elected president of the Canadian Society for Biblical Studies.
Professor Segal’s publications include Jews and Arabs: A Teaching Guide (UAHC Press), Two Powers in Heaven (Brill), Deus Ex Machina: Computers in the Humanities (Penn University Bulletin Board), Rebecca’s Children: Judaism and Christianity in the Roman World (Harvard University Press), The Other Judaisms of Late Antiquity (Scholars Press). Paul the Convert: The Apostasy and Apostolate of Saul of Tarsus was published by Yale University Press in Spring 1990 and was the Editor’s Choice, the main selection of the History Book Club’s summer list. It was also a selection of The Book of the Month Club.
Professor Segal’s latest book is entitled Life After Death: A History of the Afterlife in Western Religion (Doubleday, 2004). It is the Editor’s Choice, the featured Summer Selection of the History Book Club, as well as an alternate selection of the Book of the Month Club and the Behavioral Science Book Club. It was voted one of the four best books in religion in 2004 by the AP. He has also written many scholarly articles for journals in the United States, Canada, and Europe.