Helen Bond


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Ever since I first encountered historical criticism I've been fascinated by the documents that make up the New Testament, particularly the gospels. How did these texts originate? What kind of groups found them useful? What are the relations between them? And how can we disentangle their complex weave of history, theology and defence? More recently I've been drawn to studies of traditions and how groups remember their past, all of which can tell us a great deal about the emergence of various forms of early Christianity.

I’m interested in most aspects of the social, cultural and religious context of Second Temple Judaism and early Christianity, including Josephus, the Herods, and the Roman government of Judaea. I've written books on Pontius Pilate and the high priest Caiaphas, and shorter articles on a range of other literary or historical themes. Recently I’ve been immersed in historical Jesus studies, and became intrigued not only by the figure of Jesus but also the history of the scholarly Quest devoted to him. I have a number of current projects:

  • a monograph about characters in Mark's passion narrative.
  • an edited 3-vol work (with Chris Keith and Jens Schroeter) on The Reception of the Jesus Tradition in the first three Centuries (to be published by Bloomsbury Academic).
  • an edited volume (with Eddie Adams) on the reception of Jesus in popular culture, Putting the Bible on the Box (Sheffield Phoenix, 2014)
  • an edited volume (with Larry Hurtado) on Peter in Earliest Christianity (Eerdmans, 2014)

In July 2011, I became Director of the Edinburgh Centre for the Study of Christian Origins (CSCO). The Centre aims to promote research into the earliest period of Christianity. Details of upcoming events and the kind of things we are interested in can be found on our blog site: www.christianorigins.co.uk

I’ve also been involved in a number of media projects; for a list of some of the more recent, click here:

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Pontius Pilate in History and Interpretation, Durham University

Award Date: 1 Jan 1994


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