Crises in Leadership: Early Jewish Apocalypses and the Revolt of Bar Kokhba

Date: 
11/30/2017 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Location: 
Hilary J. Boone Center
Speaker(s) / Presenter(s): 
Shayna Sheinfeld

In 70 CE the second Jewish temple was destroyed. According to late antique rabbinic sources, Judaism is saved through the quick thinking of one particular rabbi, and thus begins the easy transition from the second temple to the rabbinic period. Historical sources do not support the idea of an easy transition, however. Instead, sources such as the apocalypse of 2 Baruch and the Bar Kokhba revolt reveal that there was dissension among Jews as to who should lead. This talk will explore the presentation of authority in 2 Baruch and in the material evidence from the Bar Kokhba revolt in order to highlight of the crisis of leadership in Jewish communities during this formative period of Jewish history.

Shayna Sheinfeld  (Ph.D. McGill University) is Visiting Assistant Professor of Religion at Centre College, Danville, KY. Her research investigates evidence from the first through third centuries C.E. in order to understand how early Jewish and Christian communities made sense of their world, in particular how they responded to crisis.

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