Spring 2024 Shapiro Lecture with Dr. Michal Bar-Asher Siegal
11 Apr 2024

It’s complicated! Network analysis and Jewish-Christian relationships in the Babylonian Talmud.

This talk will introduce a new set of methodological tools for understanding the connections between Jews and Christians in late antiquity. Together with a zoologist, Prof. Yossi Yovel, Bar-Asher Siegal will use network analysis, commonly used in sciences, to generate models of inter-religious Christian-Jewish networks. Bar-Asher Siegal’s talk will demonstrate the scope, nature, and advantages of network analysis for revealing the complex intertwined evolution of the two religions. The network analysis approach is a tool for pointing scholarly research in new directions, which only reveal themselves as a result of this type of mapping but can also lead us down new and exciting paths that are currently unknown.

Dr. Michal Bar-Asher Siegal

Dr. Michal Bar-Asher Siegal is a scholar of rabbinic Judaism. Her work focuses on aspects of Jewish-Christian interactions in the ancient world, and compares early Christian and rabbinic sources. She is a faculty member at the Goldstein-Goren Department of Jewish Thought, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, and she was an elected member of the Israel Young Academy of Sciences. During the 2022-2023 academic year, she is the Horace Goldsmith Visiting Professor in Judaic Studies at Yale University. Her first book is Early Christian Monastic Literature and the Babylonian Talmud (Cambridge University Press, 2013; winner of the 2014 Manfred Lautenschlaeger Award). Her second book is Jewish-Christian Dialogues on Scripture in Late Antiquity: Heretic Narratives of the Babylonian Talmud (Cambridge University Press, 2019; finalist, National Jewish Book Award, 2019).