The Poetics of Christian Performance: Prayer, Liturgy, and their Environments in East and West (5th to 11th Century)

[RG # 144] The Poetics of Christian Performance: Prayer, Liturgy, and their Environments in East and West (5th to 11th Century)

September 1, 2015 - June 30, 2016


Bruria Bitton-Ashkeloni (The Hebrew University of Jerusalem)
Derek Krueger (University of North Carolina at Greensboro)

This interdisciplinary research project is exploring the performance of prayer, liturgy, and hymns among a variety of Eastern and Western Christian traditions from the end of Antiquity to the Middle Ages. Focusing on the history and environments of worship shifts the emphasis in the comparative study of Christianity beyond the history of doctrine.

The timeline extended from the Council of Chalcedon in 451 - when the great division between Eastern Christianities took place - to the eleventh century, just before the cultural upheaval brought about by the Crusades. The geographical framework includes Christianity's religious centers - Palestine, Constantipole, and Rome - and its periphery - East Syria and Medieval France. New models of piety, the ways in which people imagined their interaction with the divine, and the rise of asceticism in the late antique Mediterranean world brought forth new conceptions and patterns of worship. Novel religious performances played a vital role in shaping Christian identities in Byzantium and the Latin West as well as encoding specific poetics and theories of how religion should function. Bringing together historians of religion, art, architecture, and music, the project is focused on religious performance as a way to re-narrate the history of Christian religious culture in the East and West in its social and intellectual contexts.





Yitzhak Hen

Chair of Board of Directors
Professor at the Department of History
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Professor Yitzhak Hen is a historian of the early medieval West.

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His particular interest is in the intellectual and religious culture of the post-Roman Barbarian kingdoms of Western Europe. Part of his research is dedicated to the examination of early medieval manuscripts, and to the study of early medieval liturgy in its cultural, social and religious context.

Read more about Professor Hen here. 

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Derek Krueger

University of North Carolina
Derek Krueger is the Joe Rosenthal Excellence Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.  His research interests include …

Yossi Maurey

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Yossi Maurey holds a PhD (2005) in musicology from the University of Chicago, and has served as Senior Lecturer at the Department of Musicology at The Hebrew …

Warren Woodfin

Queens College
Warren Woodfin is Kallinikeion Assistant Professor of Byzantine Studies at Queens College, where he holds joint appointments in the Departments of History and …