Call for Papers

The Eighth North American Syriac Symposium
Brown University, Providence, RI
June 16-19, 2019

Call for Papers

The Eighth North American Syriac Symposium will convene at Brown University on June 16-19, 2019.  Held every four years since 1991, the North American Syriac Symposium brings together scholars and students for exchange and discussion on a wide variety of topics related to the language, literature, and cultural history of Syriac Christianity, extending chronologically from the first centuries CE to the present day and geographically from Syriac Christianity's homeland in the Middle East to South India, China, and the worldwide diaspora.  

We invite paper proposals for the 2019 Brown Syriac Symposium on the them of

Syriac Worlds: Interactions, Exchanges, Contributions

Throughout its long history, Syriac Christianity has flourished in the midst of other languages, religions, cultures, and societies.  However turbulent its circumstances, Syriac has enabled distinctive articulations and cultural expressions for its speakers.  Moreover, not only have there been constant interactions, but Syriac has been an active medium of exchange.  Contributions, borrowings, adaptations, and innovations have characterized the literary, material, philological, and cultural productions of Syriac speakers from the start. This Symposium welcomes proposals for scholarly papers on all topics that address Syriac in any of its historical time periods, within this broad theme.

Proposals may be submitted either for individual papers or as part of a proposed panel.  Individual presentations must be limited to 20 minutes, plus 5 minutes of discussion time.  Please submit contact information for the presenter(s) and an abstract of 250-350 words.  Those wishing to propose a panel of 3 to 4 papers (4 papers maximum) on a specific theme must submit a separate abstract for each presentation, a title for the panel, and full contact information for all presenters and the session moderator.

All proposals should be submitted electronically to nasyriacsymposium@gmail.com on or before January 2, 2019.  Notification of acceptances of paper and panel proposlas will be made in early February, with a view to publishing the program in early March.

In addition to papers and panels, the symposium will feature keynote lectures by: 

  • Liv Ingebord Lied, MF Norwegian School of Theology, Oslo
  • Kathleen McVey, Princeton Theological Seminary (Emerita)
  • Ellen Muehlberger, University of Michigan at Ann Arbor
  • Michael Penn, Stanford University
  • Columba Stewart, St. John's University
  • David G. K. Taylor, Oxford University

Additional informaion for the Symposium can be found at the following website, which will be updated regularly: https://www.brown.edu/academics/religious-studies/events-0/syriac-symposium.

If you have any questions, please contact us at nasyriacsymposium@gmail.com.

We look forward to welcoming you to Brown University in the summer of 2019!

Best wishes,
Susan Ashbrook Harvey
on behalf of the local steering committee:

Local Steering Committee:
Susan Ashbrook Harvey, Brown University (Chair)
Sargon Donabed, Roger Williams University
Jae Hee Han, Brown University
Sandra Keating, Providence College
Nancy Khalek, Brown University
Ute Possekel, Harvard Divinty School