Deadline: 2015-07-01
Level Of Study: PhD

PhD in the History and Culture of Ancient Judaism and Early Christianity

The PhD project is embedded in the newly created ‘History and Culture of Ancient Judaism and Early Christianity research field jointly hosted by LUCAS and LUIH. The supervisor is Professor Jurgen K. Zangenberg (LUCAS and LUIH; The chronological framework of the project ranges from Alexander to Constantine, the geographical covers the predominately Greek- or Latin-speaking regions surrounding the Mediterranean basin. The successful PhD project will offer a nuanced and innovative case study based on textual and material evidence illustrating how ancient Jewish and / or Christian authors or communities positioned themselves within and interacted with their specific Mediterranean context(s). The dissertation can address questions of identity or community formation as well as the development of ancient Jewish and / or Christian material culture.   The successful candidate will be expected to carry out the following activities: Writing a PhD thesis;
Submitting research results for academic publications (journals, etc.);
Presenting papers at conferences, both in the Netherlands and internationally;
Some teaching in the second and third year of the appointment;
Co-organising workshops together with the supervisor of the programme;
Participating in the PhD training programme of the National Research School of Classics OIKOS;
Contributing to the activities of Kinneret Regional Project, of which Leiden University is a consortium member (;
Participating in reading and discussion groups, seminars and workshops within the Classics Department of the LUCAS Research Institute and the Ancient History Department of the LUIH Research Institute, as well as the wider Faculty of Humanities.
  The successful candidate will have a Masters or equivalent degree in the field of either Judaic Studies (focus: Ancient Judaism), Early Christian / New Testament Studies, Theology (focus: New Testament Studies), Classics (focus Ancient Judaism or Early Christianity), Ancient History or Classical Archaeology (focus material culture of Ancient Judaism or Early Christianity) and will have obtained this degree no longer than ten years ago. The MA thesis must be of high quality, with a grade of at least 8.0 on a ten-point scale, or comparable assessment;
The applicants MA thesis will testify to well-developed research skills, including the ability to formulate relevant and creative research questions and hypotheses, descriptive and analytical skills, and a clear and persuasive style of writing;
The applicants CV will illustrate familiarity with and experience in research on the study of ancient Jewish texts preferably from the Greco-Roman period and early Christian literature from the 1st and 2nd centuries AD in their historical and cultural context within the ancient Mediterranean basin, as well as of the material culture of ancient Judaism and early Christianity;
The applicant will have good reading competence in ancient Greek and Latin in addition to an excellent command of English in reading, writing and speaking, as well as German and French in reading. Expertise in ancient Hebrew or Aramaic is welcome, but is not a formal requirement;
The applicant will be able to work both independently and as part of a team;
The PhD research should result in a doctors degree from the Faculty of the Humanities of Leiden University under the primary supervision of Professor Jurgen K. Zangenberg;
The applicant will undertake to complete the proposed PhD research within 4 years (1.0 FTE) or five years (0.8 FTE).
Leiden Universitys Faculty of Humanities ( hosts a wealth of expertise in such fields as literature, history, languages, art history, linguistics, religion and area studies, covering practically the entire world. The Leiden University Centre for the Arts in Society (LUCAS, and the Leiden University Institute for History (LUIH, are two of six research institutes within the Faculty of Humanities. LUCAS focuses on the study of art, literature and culture through various media; LUIH is responsible for most of the historical research carried out at Leiden University.   The successful applicant will be appointed initially for a period of 12 months, with the preferred starting date of 1 October 2015. Following a positive evaluation of capabilities and compatibility and providing progress is satisfactory, the appointment will be extended by a further 3, resp. 4, years. The appointment must lead to the completion of a PhD thesis at Leiden University. Appointment will be under the terms of the CAO (Collective Labour Agreement) of the Dutch Universities. The gross monthly salary is set at € 2.125,- in the first year, increasing to € 2.717,- gross per month in year four. This is based upon full-time employment and conforms to current salary scales under the collective employment agreement (CAO) for Dutch Universities. An appointment with Leiden University includes pension accrual and other benefits such as an annual holiday premium of 8% and an end-of-year premium of 8.3%. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax break. Leiden University offers an attractive benefits package with additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses (8.3 %), training and career development and sabbatical leave. Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax break.

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