Ryan Schroeder

Research Topic

Hebrew Bible and the Ancient Near East

Research Description

My research explores the transmission and development of ancient Hebrew/biblical literature, the history of ancient Israelite religion (especially prophecy and divination), ancient Near Eastern scribal cultures (e.g., in Mesopotamia and at Qumran), and the social functions of “scripture” in religious communities.

Why did you decide to study at UBC?

I chose to study at UBC because I wanted to conduct research under Dr. Sara Milstein (Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible and Ancient Near Eastern Studies), a world-class scholar of the transmission of biblical and Mesopotamian literature. I knew that other faculty members in the Department of Classical, Near Eastern, and Religious Studies would also be tremendously valuable and supportive of my research agenda. In my program of study at UBC I have been able to examine literary traditions running from the Late Bronze Age (e.g., Ugaritic material; c. 1400–1200 BCE) to late antiquity (e.g., the Mishnah; c. 200 CE), from Mesopotamia to Egypt. In our multidisciplinary department, I have also been able to supplement my training in textual evidence with courses in archaeology, which have enabled me to consider better the material aspects of reading and writing in the ancient world.

 

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree?

I decided to pursue graduate degrees for two reasons: (1) to develop my research and writing skills under the supervision of experts in my field of study (Religious Studies); and (2) to gain experience, expertise, and qualifications necessary for teaching at the university level. After I complete my PhD at UBC, I would like to become a professor, which will require excellence in both research and teaching (among other things!).